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Getting the Belkin N+ Wireless USB Networking Adapter to work with Ubuntu

April 3, 2010

I wasted a whole (beautiful) day on this so I thought I’d document it in order to help out any wretched souls out there in the same boat. There’s a lot of incomplete and out-of-date documentation on getting wireless usb adapters to work with Ubuntu which is half the problem so do pay attention to dates. This knowledge will, alas, also decay as Ubuntu and the associated drivers evolve.

First, you should be running be running the latest version of Ubuntu, Ubuntu 9.10. This may work with older versions but then it may not. Do you feel lucky?

For the Belkin F5D8055 v2 device you want to use the RT3070 drivers. Download them from RALink Linux Support page. (Here’s a direct link but it may not work.)

Next you must compile the drivers. But before doing this you get to hack some magical C driver code. As described in this thread you will need to edit the common/rtusb_dev_id.c file and add the line {USB_DEVICE(0x050d,0x825b)}, /* Belkin F5D8055 v2 */ to the end of this file. This corresponds to the USB Device ID of your stick, which, as listen in the output of the sudo lsusb command, should be 050d:825b.

Next, as described in this thread, you must edit the os/linux/usb_main_dev.c and add MODULE_LICENSE("GPL"); after the MODULE_DESCRIPTION line.

Finally, note that the driver has a bug in it. It’s still going to look for a file called RT2870STA.dat in the base directory. No such file exists. Instead make a copy of the RT3070STA.dat file named RT2870STA.dat.

You’re almost there. Be brave.

Now, do:

sudo make clean
sudo make
sudo make install

The final steps, as described in this thread, is to use modprobe to actually install the rt3070sta drivers. A simple modprobe -i rt3070sta should suffice.

For one last bit of quirky goodness, you’ll need to rename the driver directory in /etc using the command mv /etc/Wireless/rt3070sta /etc/Wireless/rt2870sta. You may also need to rename any files in this directory.

Finally, just reboot and, if the gods favor you above all others, you should be good to go.

At every step in this process you’re going to want to pay attention to the output of dmesg to see if there are any errors.

Good luck!


From → ubuntu

One Comment
  1. oldboy permalink

    Thank you for documenting the method here. After many days and hrs and wasted, I happened to come to your posts here, and now, I am able to compile the driver and everything worked. My trouble was that Ralink changed the files around where I do not know where to add my usb id, and also the error in makefile.
    I have also documented this method in Debian user forum so others can find it (with credit to you).


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