So apparently my computer's wifi card works perfectly on the most recent snapshot CD, but I have never been able to get past the soft-block on my card when I'm using my permanent install. At one time I could boot into Windows to enable the wifi, but after reinstalling everything from scratch the wifi gets disabled after each reboot. I've tried updating the system, fooling around with rfkill, restarting various kernel modules and I installed 'iw' and 'wireless-tools' just to see. Maybe there's an unmarked dependency that rfkill needs?
What could be that different between my installation and that on the CD?
Any and all thoughts on this are welcome.
Module Size Used by nls_cp437 5953 2 vfat 10119 2 fat 49357 1 vfat usb_storage 47063 2 iptable_nat 3358 0 nf_conntrack_ipv4 9262 1 nf_defrag_ipv4 1371 1 nf_conntrack_ipv4 nf_nat_ipv4 3568 1 iptable_nat nf_nat 15028 2 nf_nat_ipv4,iptable_nat nf_conntrack 71499 4 nf_nat,nf_nat_ipv4,iptable_nat,nf_conntrack_ipv4 iptable_mangle 1584 0 iptable_filter 1488 0 ip_tables 17218 3 iptable_filter,iptable_mangle,iptable_nat x_tables 17351 3 ip_tables,iptable_filter,iptable_mangle joydev 9695 0 ath9k_common 2096 0 ath9k_hw 373150 1 ath9k_common uvcvideo 72921 1 videobuf2_vmalloc 3304 1 uvcvideo videobuf2_memops 2367 1 videobuf2_vmalloc videobuf2_core 27541 1 uvcvideo videodev 105273 3 uvcvideo,videobuf2_core media 10309 2 uvcvideo,videodev acer_wmi 23782 0 iTCO_wdt 5407 0 iTCO_vendor_support 1929 1 iTCO_wdt sparse_keymap 3114 1 acer_wmi mxm_wmi 1467 0 ath 15489 2 ath9k_common,ath9k_hw intel_powerclamp 8802 0 mac80211 487534 0 psmouse 84588 0 serio_raw 5041 0 cfg80211 452012 2 ath,mac80211 rfkill 15626 3 cfg80211,acer_wmi broadcom 7174 0 snd_hda_codec_hdmi 29298 1 coretemp 6102 0 pcspkr 2027 0 microcode 13204 0 tg3 150120 0 ptp 8324 1 tg3 evdev 9912 13 acpi_cpufreq 10726 1 pps_core 8889 1 ptp libphy 20172 2 tg3,broadcom snd_hda_codec_realtek 30893 1 mperf 1203 1 acpi_cpufreq ac 2536 0 intel_ips 12801 0 i2c_i801 11269 0 i915 562614 3 drm_kms_helper 35086 1 i915 snd_hda_intel 35816 0 snd_hda_codec 145736 3 snd_hda_codec_realtek,snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_hda_intel battery 6970 0 drm 229917 4 i915,drm_kms_helper snd_hwdep 6364 1 snd_hda_codec snd_pcm 76860 3 snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_hda_codec,snd_hda_intel snd_page_alloc 7266 2 snd_pcm,snd_hda_intel snd_timer 18687 1 snd_pcm snd 58893 7 snd_hda_codec_realtek,snd_hwdep,snd_timer,snd_hda_codec_hdmi,snd_pcm,snd_hda_codec,snd_hda_intel wmi 8347 2 acer_wmi,mxm_wmi i2c_algo_bit 5391 1 i915 i2c_core 22479 6 drm,i915,i2c_i801,drm_kms_helper,i2c_algo_bit,videodev video 11138 2 i915,acer_wmi processor 27555 1 acpi_cpufreq mei 58110 0 button 4669 1 i915 intel_agp 10936 1 i915 intel_gtt 12664 3 i915,intel_agp lpc_ich 12849 0 soundcore 5418 1 snd ext4 486052 1 crc16 1359 1 ext4 mbcache 5930 1 ext4 jbd2 85240 1 ext4 sd_mod 30826 6 sr_mod 14930 0 cdrom 35104 1 sr_mod ahci 22696 1 libahci 21201 1 ahci ehci_pci 4120 0 ehci_hcd 47343 1 ehci_pci libata 170065 2 ahci,libahci scsi_mod 129660 4 usb_storage,libata,sd_mod,sr_mod usbcore 176995 4 uvcvideo,usb_storage,ehci_hcd,ehci_pci usb_common 954 1 usbcore
Last edited by take5 (2013-05-18 01:04:01)
Is it something like https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id=163235 ?
Last edited by karol (2013-05-13 22:00:47)
No, the problem I'm having is when I type "rfkill unblock all" nothing changes, but if I reboot the computer into the arch cd I get this.
0: acer-wireless: Wireless LAN Soft blocked: yes Hard blocked: no 1: phy0: Wireless LAN Soft blocked: no Hard blocked: yes
rfkill unblock all
0: acer-wireless: Wireless LAN Soft blocked: no Hard blocked: no 1: phy0: Wireless LAN Soft blocked: no Hard blocked: no
phy is the physical layer for your wireless device. If the phy is hard blocked, the card itself is going to have a hell of a time soft-unblocking itself.
I think you need to determine why it is your phy0 is hard blocked. Is it a possiblity that this is happening because of another operating system? Or do you ahve a physical switch that toggles this functionality?
That's a great explanation and it makes a lot of sense. However, the only "switch" I have is Fn+F2. When I press those inside my permanent arch installation it can only deactivate the wifi and The phy0 layer doesn't even show up.
But, when I'm running the portable arch environment it enables and disables the hardware switch on phy0 and acer-wireless without a problem. Is it possible that a different driver needs to be set up. For example the wifi card is actually an Atheros AR5B97 not Acer.
So I've been able to make a little progress, but I'm confident that there's someone here who knows how to fix this or at least point me in the right direction. First I tried deleting /etc/modprobe.d/ath9k and restarting the broadcom and tg3 modules. After rebooting I was suddenly able to see the phy layer. I've tried removing the ath9k and acer_wmi modules in various combinations. When I remove acer_wmi I only have access to phy and vice versa when ath9k is removed. When acer-wireless is gone I can manipulate the soft block on phy, but the hard block won't budge.
1: phy0: Wireless LAN Soft blocked: no Hard blocked: yes
1: phy0: Wireless LAN Soft blocked: yes Hard blocked: yes
So I tried compiling the most recent kernel (3.10-rc-1), and as far as I can tell that didn't make a difference. So it seems I'm more or less back to square one. If it's a bug then it's either in ath9k or acer-wmi or perhaps the rfkill module. But all of this brings me back to most perplexing part of the puzzle. Why does everything work as it should on a slightly out-of-date Arch CD, but not on my recently synchronized hard drive install? I'm convinced these problems stem from some configuration differences of some sort, but I have no idea how I'm supposed to track down that issue.
And thank you Karol and WonderWoofy, I appreciate your input on this.
Honestly, I don't really know where to go form here. It is unsurprising that you cannot change the hard block, as that is typically a read-only scenario. That is of course, unless you have a physical switch to fuck with there, and it sounds as though your switch/button is doing nothing of consquence (gehidore also pointed out to me the other day that the wifi button on my Thinkpad actually doens't hard block, it is a software only switch).
It shouldn't make a difference, as this *should* only change the soft blocks, but have you tried setting any paramters for the rfkill module when it is loaded? There are two, master_switch_mode= and default_state=. You can use modinfo to see what the options are. Again, that shouldn't do anything, as nothing in userspace is supposed to be able to change a hard block, but I figure you're probably willing to try just about anything at this point.
What is really f*cking with my head is that you say that it works with an older Arch live media. So there must be some difference in the software that is causing this, but that totally goes against all the rfkill documentation I have ever read. How old is that live media you are using there? What version is the kernel?
Oh BTW, what did you have in /etc/modprobe.d/ath9k?
Last edited by WonderWoofy (2013-05-17 14:51:18)
Thank you so much! I followed your advice and set the rfkill parameters to unblock the device.
install rfkill /bin/false options rfkill master_switch_mode=2 options rfkill default_state=1
While doing that I accidentally discovered that I needed to boot with rfkill disabled (install.../bin/false) and then restart it manually along with ath9k and acer-wmi. I'm not even sure if setting those parameters are necessary it may be enough just to restart rfkill. Either way it worked and I've got my wifi back.
How odd... I find it amazing that there are no other complaints of this nature regarding acer-wmi and rfkill.
In any case, I am glad you've found a workaround for now.