44 members have voted
Today I went to an area hamfest and spent a couple hours wandering around with a friend of mine. Lots of fun stuff to look at, but I was a bit leary about making any big-ticket purchases. (Hamfest purchases are like a box of chocolates... etc....) Was unsuccessful in finding a power supply I needed, but I happened by a table that had all sorts of cheap WiFi gear. While I was tempted to grab one of everything, I settled for getting an old-ish looking Linksys wireless PCI card for a whopping $5. I didn't even check the model number or anything... I just figured that even if it turns out to be a dud, I'm only out a few bucks.Got it home and took a look at it. It appears to be a Linksys WMP11 (11 referring to 11 Mbit/sec, or 802.11b I am assuming). I did some web searching for it to see about getting that model card to run under a non-Windows OS. Most sites referenced a version number for compatibility, as the different versions of the card used different chipsets. This was puzzling, since I was unable to find a version number on the card anywhere. Finally, I found a listing of a number of wireless devices and their chipsets. This list told me that if there is *not* a version number on the card, then it is effectively "Version 1". The neat thing about this, is that the version 1 (or whatever it's called) of this particular card uses a chipset (Prism2) that is linux-friendly, while later versions use less cooperative chipsets.So... I am now going to plug this card into my firewall box and see if I can turn it into an access point.Because... you know... it would be cool. Never mind that I already have one in my house. This way I can have one for guests to use, that isn't attached to my LAN at all (and that I wouldn't have to generate certificates for everyone else to use). I am somewhat tempted to leave it open, but I'll have to see how that goes. At the very least, if I do end up tinkering with my ZyXEL wireless router and brick it, I would still be able to have a wireless network in the house.