Configuring the Madwifi module for Atheros based wireless controllers in Ubuntu 7.10


Bill Giannikos


While Ubuntu 7.10 already includes the Madwifi module, this driver is under constant development and your wireless card may require a later version than the one included in Ubuntu. Here we will guide you in the necessary steps in installing the latest Madwifi modules.


While this guide is mainly focused to laptop users there isn't any difference for desktop users.


You should run a full update for your installation of Ubuntu to ensure you have all the latest packages installed.

Installing the latest stable Madwifi module

Here are the steps in installing the latest Madwifi modules

1. Download the latest Madwifi module from In this guide we are going to use madwifi-0.9.4.tar.gz as at the time of writing these are the current ones.

2. Load up a terminal window if you are in the graphic interface.

3. Type in the following to install gcc and the kernel headers:

sudo apt-get install build-essential linux-headers-`uname -r`

4. Move to the /usr/src/ folder with:

cd /usr/src

5. Extract the contents of the file you downloaded with:

sudo tar -xzvf /path/to/madwifi-0.9.4.tar.gz

Remember to replace the “/path/to” in this command to the path of where your file is.

6. Move into the newly created folder with

cd madwifi-0.9.4

7. Now start the building process with:

sudo make

This will take a while.

8. Delete the older Madwifi module with

sudo rm -rf /lib/modules/`uname -r`/madwifi

9. And finally we install these drivers with:

sudo make install

10. Reboot your computer and the newer Madwifi module will be used.


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While Ubuntu 7.10 already includes the Madwifi module, this driver is under constant development and your wireless card may require a later version than the one included in Ubuntu. Here we will guide you in the necessary steps in installing the latest Madwifi modules.

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