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I have a Debian Jessie system which, for reasons unrelated to this question, has nothing installed but the set of essential system packages.

What is the simplest method for connecting to a wireless network? If it matters, my network is using WEP (yes, I know it's bad to use WEP). Bonus points if you suggest an answer requiring the least number of packages needed (including dependencies), because I have to manually download every one of these.

I've installed wireless-tools, wpa_supplicant and isc-dhcp-client, and messed around, but got nowhere. I've been able to set my link to up with ip link set up wlan0, but that doesn't actually get me to the point where I can input a password to connect to the router.

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The common dependencies of wicd-daemon and network-manager should do the trick. –  Gilles Jul 27 '13 at 22:38
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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Since you have the wireless tools and wpa supplicant installed, you have all you need. But for WEP you don't need the wpa supplicant. Configure your network via /etc/network/interfaces:

auto wlan1
iface wlan1 inet dhcp
  wireless-key <key>
  wireless-essid <ESSID>
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ah, i was missing the wireless-* components. –  strugee Jul 27 '13 at 3:09
    
Actually, this didn't end up helping. It did the exact same thing as before, which was to output "DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval <some number between 3 and 18>" –  strugee Jul 27 '13 at 3:25
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