I can't figure out how to make WIFI work correctly on debian.

First of all, when I just installed Debian I had WICD as the network program. This program doesn't work correctly. Specifically it can't get past the Validating Authentication. It just does it for a very long time without connecting and at the end I just get at the bottom not connected.

I then decided to install gnome-network-manager and use the nm-applet to connect disconnect and so on.

But this work erratically. Sometimes it's connected, then all of a sudden the connection is lost even if the nm-applet shows the connection as "full". Then I disconnect and connect again like X10 before the connection is restablished.

Can someone please tell me what is wrong? Why the WIFI apps are not working?

Thanks in advance for your kind help.

P.S. I have the latest debian installed.



root@debian:/home/jenia# lspci -knn | grep Net -A2
00:19.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: Intel Corporation 82566MM Gigabit Network Connection [8086:1049] (rev 03)
    Subsystem: Lenovo ThinkPad T61/R61 [17aa:20b9]
    Kernel driver in use: e1000e
03:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Intel Corporation PRO/Wireless 4965 AG or AGN [Kedron] Network Connection [8086:4230] (rev 61)
    Subsystem: Intel Corporation Device [8086:1010]
    Kernel driver in use: iwl4965

uname -a :

root@debian:/home/jenia# uname -a
Linux debian 3.16.0-4-686-pae #1 SMP Debian 3.16.7-ckt25-2+deb8u3 (2016-07-02) i686 GNU/Linux

Changes to /etc/network/interfaces made the connection kind of work:

# This file describes the network interfaces available on your system
# and how to activate them. For more information, see interfaces(5).

source /etc/network/interfaces.d/*

# The loopback network interface
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

# The primary network interface
allow-hotplug eth0
iface eth0 inet dhcp
auto  wlan0
# I added this   <---------------------------------------
iface wlan0 inet dhcp
        wpa-ssid ASUS
        wpa-psk asdkadmkamdskmakdsmakmds

The connection works perfectly except that this doesn't explain why the connection times out with gnome-network-manager and nm-applet on the one hand, and authentication fails with WCID on the other hand (I entered and verified the password with WCID GUI a million times!).

Also, I'm wondering, how would I connect to other networks? Will I always need to change /etc/network/interfaces?

  • Please add the output of lspci -knn | grep Net -A2 and uname -a – GAD3R Jul 10 '16 at 23:59
  • Hi @GAD3R. I left the info in the original question. Thanks very much for the interest!! – Jenia Ivanov Jul 11 '16 at 0:32
  • I somehow broke my install completely. hehe. It's okay cause it's totally fresh anyways. I'll reinstall Debian, change the /etc/network/interfces file again. See what happens. Then I'll post a brand new, simple and succinct question again. Should be next week. This thread is obsolete. I leave it here cause maybe someone will find my discovery about /etc/network/interfaces useful. Thanks everyone! – Jenia Ivanov Jul 11 '16 at 1:18

Remove wicd because it will cause some conflict with NetworkManager :

Warning: Running multiple network managers will cause problems, so it is important to disable all other network management daemons.

Then remove wpa-ssid and wpa-psk from your /etc/network/interfaces

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.