Hey, I have an ubuntu question - I have a A215-S7413 toshiba notebook and I'm trying to get the wireless card to work in it. People are throwing words like ndiswrapper and stuff around and I have no clue how to make it work. Can you email me a step-by-step how-to?I'm going to start by explaining how difficult finding this information was, not to complain, but to show why David had such a hard time solving his problem. It took me a few days' casual Googling in my spare time to get what I needed. (The websites referenced are at the bottom of this post.)
Because I didn't have the laptop to work on, my first search left me with no specification information at all. The only lead took me to LaptopKing , a parts vendor, which implied that the laptop might have an Atheros AR5BXB72 PCI mini wireless network car, which should work with a recent MadWifi driver. I asked David to try to enable the driver in the Restricted Drivers dialog.
David sent me an e-mail back pointing to the Ubuntu Forums , which didn't help because the card doesn't show up on the PCI bus, which is very weird. David told me that it's on the USB bus instead.
Widening my search took me to a couple of lists and forums , which showed that some of the Toshiba Satellites had a Realtek card on the USB bus. It sounded good, so I went with it, and turned up a driver download site  which confirmed that David's model uses that driver. Really, I'm lying. David's model comes with one of two cards, either the mentioned Atheros or a Realtek. Talk about screwed up!
Finally, I hit paydirt and wound up over on Data North's description of Ubuntu on the S7407 , which has the same card. It's quite detailed. There's also an Ubuntu Forum post  about the S7437 and the Linlap entry for the A215 series in general .
While I can't be completely sure that David's problems will disappear, the final verdict is that there's a native driver for the Realtek wireless card that's probably on his A215-S7413. Run
to check if you have this card.
lsusb | egrep '0bda:81(87|89|97)'
David needs to download the modified driverfrom the website . There are two "modified" drivers available, and I'm not sure which one he needs. I'd try the more recent one first if I were him. Next, unpack and run
./wlan0upConfigure wlan0 from there. To make it automatic on bootup, edit /etc/networking/interfaces to look something like this:
Point the pre-up and post-up to wherever you unpacked the package. It only works in managed and ad-hoc modes. This information is available in the FAQ.iface wlan0 inet dhcp wireless-essid my-network wireless-key1 s:mykey wireless-mode managed wireless-channel 6pre-up /root/rtl8187b-modified/wlan0up post-down /root/rtl8187b-modified/wlan0down
I hope this works for you, David. Let me know. It turns out that there's a more wordy explanation on an Ubuntu Help page , if you need it. It has a little different method, too, if mine doesn't work for you. Anyway, you should be on the right track now.