Whenever I try to install or test the Debian live image (gnome) on my machine, I get an error talking about a failure to load the firmware ... and then it opens a black screen, it never boots gnome (image)

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Any suggestions on how to solve the problem?

  • that is not ath1ok ... it is ath 10 k ... it is a zero, not capital O
    – jsotola
    Commented Sep 9, 2020 at 0:44

1 Answer 1


In Debian, most wifi firmware is not installed by default, because it is closed-source, which Debian calls, non-free. So, on some live CD/DVD you can put the firmware on a USB drive, and load it when prompted. Or, on other live mixes, it will just find the firmware on a USB drive inserted in the machine. There are live Debian disks that include non-free firmware. Finally, sometimes the firmware will load from the firmware-atheros package. Other times the package must be opened and the actual firmware files must be available on the USB drive.

If you put the live disk in a booted system, you will find lots of instructions. Just open the disk in a file manager. Connecting to a wired network connection also works. If you then want to install the firmware, edit '/etc/apt/sources.list's and put 'non-free' after 'main contrib'. Save, and run 'apt-get update'. Then 'apt-get install firmware-atheros'.

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