Please note: This project is no longer active. The website is kept online for historic purposes only.
If you´re looking for a Linux driver for your Atheros WLAN device, you should continue here .

Getting Help or Support

There are several ways of getting help with installing or using MadWifi, this page details the most effective ways of seeking (and getting) help efficiently, and without treading on anyone's toes!

Step-by-step Instructions

  1. Calm down.
  2. Check if your system meets the requirements
  3. Read the README file.
  4. Get the latest release of the driver code and try again, most likely its been fixed already.
  5. Check the FAQ and UserDocs
  6. Search the mailing list archives
    • madwifi-users: Gmane,
    • madwifi-devel: Gmane,
    • Chances are that there has been someone with similar problems in the past. So it is a good idea to check the archives of both discussion lists to see if you find a solution there. It might save you a lot of time (searching for a matching answer most probably takes much less time than writing down your question and waiting for someone to answer it), and it helps to reduce unnecessary traffic in the lists.
  7. Search the [Tickets]
  8. Search the IRC logs:

If the above list did not solve your problem, read on:

  1. If your question is on usage, please ask the mailing lists
  2. If your question is on a driver bug and you already made sure that there is no other ticket dealing with this issue, please create a new ticket
  3. If you can't wait that long for an answer, please go to the IRC channel and ask for help there (be patient).

Ask the mailing list audience

You've checked the FAQ and the list archives, but didn't find the proper answer? Then it's time to subscribe to one (or both) of the mailing lists and ask for help.
It's very important that you take the time to properly describe your problem. Nobody is able to help you with "Just installed the driver but it doesn't work" being your only description.

Don't forget to include the messages that the driver prints to your system logs when it gets loaded; use the dmesg command for this purpose. For example:

PCI: Found IRQ 11 for device 00:13.0
ath0: 11a rates: 6Mbps 9Mbps 12Mbps 18Mbps 24Mbps 36Mbps 48Mbps 54Mbps
ath0: 11b rates: 1Mbps 2Mbps 5.5Mbps 11Mbps
ath0: 802.11 address: 00:05:5d:6f:99:5f
ath0: Atheros 5211: mem=0xfebf0000, irq=11

This says the HAL module is version 0.8.2, the wlan module is version 0.7, the driver is version 0.8.2 and the hardware uses an Atheros 5211 chip (which supports 11a and 11b modes).

The more details you give about the situation where you experience problems and about the problem itself, the easier it is for others to help you. The easier it is, the more likely you will get an answer.

Last but not least: be patient. The authors of the driver will try to respond in a timely manner. But understand that MadWifi is provided as-is, i.e. with no promise of support. Most people on the list give support in their spare time, so it may take some time before you get an answer.

For urgent cases: IRC #madwifi

If you want immediate and personal help, you could try the #madwifi IRC channel on Freenode ( ), the Freenode IRC network. You can also get there with Freenode webchat (a web based IRC frontend), or (Tor allows anonymous access to IRC and other internet services).

There's no guarantee of an answer. Patience and civility are respected virtues on #madwifi. Usually IRC is able to deliver answers to your problem faster than the mailing lists, but it still takes time. People are not always in front of their IRC client windows, so it might take up to several hours before anyone replies to your question. You may browse or search the IRC logs here:

Use a paste service like for all text posting. Things like error messages, screen listings, or anything longer than a couple of lines should be pasted that way. Be sure to tell the folks in #madwifi about the URL that references your paste.

MadWifi is a registered primary group in the Freenode network. Group contact is Michael Renzmann (otaku42) who can be met on a regular basis in #madwifi or reached via e-mail.

Things To Remember

This project, like countless others, relies solely on the contributions and support of dedicated volunteers and individuals, who have no real obligation to help anyone but do so for a variety of reasons. No one is paid to do this work or provide support, just as no one has to pay for the software developed by open source projects like ours. Please remember this when seeking assistance with any problems that you may have, and be prepared to help others if you can. Demanding or rude behavior can often cause others distress and interfere with the smooth running of any project or help support system. It would be useful for everybody to familiarise themselves with the contents of this guide on How To Ask Questions The Smart Way