in Open Source

Atheros Wi-Fi rocks the Linux way

Wi-Fi

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Wi-FiMaking our world a better place to work!

Internet has become pretty imperative. Especially amongst people using laptops who would often get crazy with the absence of a Wi-Fi. The probability of using Atheros chipsets for users using Wi-Fi on laptops, for wireless freedom is very high. There are over 30 different wireless device vendors worldwide, including Linksys, D-Link and Netgear who use Atheros chipsets for wireless networking.

Atheros Communications is the leading developer and market share leader in advanced wireless LAN (WLAN) chipsets. Most of the chipsets and Wi-Fi cards today are Linux friendly but Atheros was not in this frame earlier. As it is said, change is the ‘mantra’. Everything around is changing at an unimaginable pace, where Atheros is with no exception. They are now very friendly to open source and Linux developers. It is of worthy mention that one of the few woes in Linux was its inability to work on Wi-Fi drivers, but with the amount of work that has gone into this, it has now become possible for a noob to set a Wi-FI rolling on his tux box. The credit goes to Sam Leffler, an open source developer, the HAL (hardware abstraction layer) for Atheros’ ath 5k and ath9k chip families. The reason behind was also to increase its street cred among technophiles.

Madwifi is an open-source developer group which has actually made possible the working of open-source drivers for Atheros Wi-Fi chipsets. It was also declared that Atheros released the new driver, ath9k, under the ISC License name. The Madwifi programmers say,

This driver is aimed at inclusion to the Linux kernel and supports all Atheros IEEE 802.11n devices. This represents a major shift in terms of support from Atheros with respect to Linux.

So, a fully Linux kernel integrated driver can be created by ath5k for Atheros chips without any licensing issues.

It’s recently that Atheros had released a true open source driver for its 802.11n chipsets. Earlier Atheros never brought the HAL code to light, rather desired to keep it proprietary. There had been many developments but the compatibility with the newer chipsets was not colossal. Atheros, a pioneer in wireless network solutions took the way to deliver free availability of ath9k Linux driver for IEEE 802.11n wireless devices. This is going to be included in the Linux kernel. It is also reported that, “it is an open-source version of the driver software that talks directly to its chips”. Hence the opening up of the HAL will lead to effective use of Wi-Fi adapters which are built in for the laptops as well as the handhelds running versions of Linux. This is also true for the Wi-Fi adapters that can be added on to the electronic devices.

Atheros is committed to make wireless technology easily accessible for all developers. It can also be interpreted with an intelligent logic that the future will need a community effort to fix files, new chips etc. So, it must excite all the Linux users as the point that could be driven is you can wirelessly connect a Linux on any machine without actually getting our brains put to full use. It is a clear solution for secure, high performance wireless local area networks. Compliant with the IEEE 802.11 specifications, Atheros has defined transparent connections among the electronic devices in the home, office and almost all places possible.