Monday 26 March 2012

[Solved]: Ubuntu 11.10 wireless very slow in Dell XPS M1530

In one of my previous posts about slow internet connection experienced in Ubuntu 11.04, I could not solve the problem and finally I had to downgrade my laptop to Ubuntu 10.10.

Today's post is about slow wireless connection experienced in my Dell XPS M1530 laptop after installing Ubuntu 11.10 and how this problem was solved.

In my laptop I have installed Ubuntu on dual boot, along with Vista SP2. The wireless speed from Vista SP2 was fairly fast (after I manage to open a browser and try to download in Windows after long wait to boot and finally another long wait after double clicking on the browser application). So I concluded, the slow wireless speed in Ubuntu is something to do with the driver of the wireless adapter that is installed. From the information I got from lspci command, I searched for Linux driver for my wireless adapter, but I couldn't find any. Finally I got information about an utility in Ubuntu that allows installation of drivers which are released by the manufacturers for Windows OS. That is brilliant. I gave it a shot and got excellent speed in my WiFi connection.

I am listing below the steps that I followed to fix the wireless problem and get the WiFi connection to full speed on my laptop.
  1. Downloaded the drivers (.exe files) from for Windows OS. These driver packages (.exe files) are self extracting zip files, which can be opened and extracted using Archive Manager in Ubuntu
  2. Extract the downloaded drivers
  3. Using 'Package Manager', search for 'ndisgtk' and install ndisgtk
  4. Open 'Wireless Network Drivers', and click 'Install New Driver'
  5. Locate the .inf file from the extracted location above and click 'Install'
  6. In the 'Wireless Network Drivers' the driver will be listed with status Hardware Present: Yes

Hope this helps. :-)

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