Installing Ubuntu (Jaunty)

This is perhaps the easiest installation I've ever done. It's the same machine as below, so I'll leave the specifications out. Dell Latitude D620.


  1. Download Ubuntu Desktop Edition (32-bit) from

About Me

Hello, I'm a Linux/Unix user. I've been using Ubuntu now since 2003 (or thereabouts). I enjoy converting people by preaching about Linux and Open Source. I've been a Linux user since the mid 90's. Yes, I'm that old. My first distribution was Slackware, followed by RedHat, followed by Fedora. I'm keeping a close eye on openSuSE.

I'm a trained Architect and love to chat about Art and Writing. I love to sketch using 8B pencils and charcoal. I haven't built anything for the longest time since I converted to a full-time computer job but both activities are a lot of fun for me. I've written software in C/C++, Perl, PHP/MySQL and PostgreSQL. Because of Ubuntu, I'm learning Python.

I'm an inactive member of the Kenya Team since I move back and forth between Nairobi and Toronto (Canada). My wish is to bring Linux, especially Ubuntu, to the public schools in Kenya and possibly into small businesses. I already converted our family business into a complete Linux solution, albeit using Fedora.

Installing Ubuntu on a Dell Latitude D620


  • Intel Core Duo T2400 1.83GHz
  • 4GB 533MHz DDR2 RAM (2 x 512MB config)
  • 5400RPM HD
  • 14.1-inch WXGA screen
  • Integrated graphics (Intel Media Accelerator 950) nVidia driver.

  • 24X CDRW / DVD Combo
  • Windows XP Pro
  • Dell Wireless 1490 802.11 a/g and built-in Bluetooth

Upgrade to Gutsy was done online using Synaptic. The upgrade completed successfully with two problems:

  1. Sound stopped working
  2. Wireless NIC not detected

Sound was fixed by running the following:

sudo apt-get install module-assistant
sudo m-a update
sudo m-a prepare
sudo m-a a-i alsa

Wireless NIC is a Broadcomm chipset. The installed drive bcm43xx was causing kernel error messages so had to be blacklisted. To blacklist a driver, open the file /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist and add an entry to blacklist the driver. In my case, I typed in:

blacklist bcm43xx

Then I saved the file and rebooted the laptop. On reboot the driver was not loaded. This is a very important step since the method I used to install a working driver uses the ndiswrapper package. You cannot have both the kernel driver provided and the ndiswrapper driver installed at the same time.

Problem with ndiswrapper

After the upgrade, the ndiswrapper package did not include a new kernel level driver for ndiswrapper. This driver should have been installed in /lib/modules/2.6.22-14-386/misc. This is because my particular kernel after installation was 2.6.22-14-386. You can get this information by typing uname -r at a command prompt.

Reinstalling ndiswrapper using Synaptic did not install a kernel driver so I had to remove the existing ndiswrapper tools and reinstall ndiswrapper from the source files. To do this I did the following:

  1. Launched Synaptic and removed ndiswrapper. The two packages I removed were ndiswrapper-common and ndiswrapper-utils-1.9.

  2. Downloaded the ndiswrapper source from The current version at the time that I did the download was 1.48. The file that I downloaded was ndiswrapper-1.48.tar.gz.

  3. Then I also downloaded the Windows XP drivers for my wireless NIC from

The NIC is a Dell Wireless 1490 802.11 a/g and built-in Bluetooth. Running lspci -v reports that the card is a Network controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4312 802.11a/b/g (rev 01), however the driver we need from Dell is for the Dell Wireless 1490. You'll need a Windows machine to extract the files since the download is a Windows executable. Once you extract the files, you'll only need two of them. bcmwl5.inf and bcmwl5.sys. Put them in a folder somewhere on your filesystem.

  1. Open a command prompt and locate the ndiswrapper file that you downloaded.
  2. Untar the ndiswrapper source with the following command: tar -xvzf ndiswrapper-1.48.tar.gz. This will create a folder named ndiswrapper-1.48.

  3. Change into the ndiswrapper-1.48 folder and compile the source with the following command: make.

  4. Install ndiswrapper with the following command: sudo make install. You'll be prompted for your password.

  5. Locate the folder where you copied the two Windows driver files. In my case, I put the files in a folder named wireless in my home folder. /home/andrew/wireless.

  1. Use ndiswrapper to install the Dell drivers. sudo ndiswrapper -i /home/andrew/wireless/bcmwl5.inf.

  2. Once you load the drivers, type the following command ndiswrapper -l. When I typed in that command, I saw the output below:

bcmwl5 : driver installed
        device (14E4:4312) present (alternate driver: bcm43xx)
  1. Next, load the ndiswrapper module with the following commands:

depmod -a
sudo modprobe ndiswrapper

Hopefully all goes well. At this point you should see an additional entry for wireless networks in the network control panel. This can be found under System --> Administration --> Network.

AndrewMathenge (last edited 2009-04-29 02:53:05 by bas1-toronto26-1279686329)