openSUSE 13.2: Day-1 troubles and troubleshooting – VLC, wireless etcetera

Spent a considerable amount of time yesterday, configuring the system to my liking. Installed Virtualbox and VirtualBox Extension Pack to run the various virtual machines I have. Installed VLC hoping to watch a couple of movies during the weekend. Had a wonderful time installing wireless Broadcom BCM43228 driver.

Wireless troubled me again. I have not automated the loading of the wl.ko driver which I compiled yesterday using Broadcom sources. What I do is:

sudo modprobe lib80211
sudo modprobe cfg80211
cd <Path where the wl.ko driver is>
sudo insmod ./wl.ko

I tried loading the wl.ko driver using modprobe but wireless did not work. Do not know why. Need to learn more about it.
Well, wireless worked once the drivers were loaded. But today wireless stopped working. I was not able to connect at all. The NetworkManager notifier provided a list of available connections. So, wireless driver was fine. I removed the wireless connection from the NetworkManager UI and added it again by filling all required values. Wireless is back in business.

With wireless troubles decimated, I tried to launch VLC. No matter what file I chose, I was greeted by errors only. The codecs were missing. So, I did the following:

sudo zypper in vlc-codecs

Now VLC has got rid of its dementia. Maybe, I will go ahead and watch a couple of movies.



  1. Pingback: openSUSE 13.2 and Broadcom BCM43228 wireless: Driver woes in the Linux world | The Autodidactic Hacker

  2. Did you copy wl.ko to /lib/modules//kernel/net/wireless
    Not that that helped me. I have an HP Business Notebook 8510p with BCM4311. I had wireless working on 12.2, but now…. oh boy what a nightmare this is.
    Maybe I should get my good laptop repaired instead of using this oldy.


    • Peter,

      Compile the source code and the wl.ko module will be generated. Take it and put it in any directory of your choice. Run the commands I mentioned in the article. That is all you need. I have not had to recompile the module since November 2014. If you are moving from 12.2 -> 13.x, the kernel version changes and compiling it is necessary because of a Broadcom bug.

      Back it up somewhere for later use. Cloud backup etc., I mean.


  3. I tried several ways of getting wifi to work with openSuse 13.2 on my HP Business Notebook 8510p. I did a new install instead of an upgrade, since some other stuff was messed up on 12.2 when I removed certain packages. And since the laptop is used only for internet, I decided to do a standard install (+ hplip for my HP Photosmart 7520 printer).

    I tried both the open source module and the vendor module. The open source driver does something. The wifi led lights up, and then it goes off again. rfkill list shows a hardware block. The wifi key does not seem to work. I checked other keys. They seem to work ok.

    The new Broadcom driver from their site, does nothing on my system. Recompiling did not help too. And when I do, I get a tainted module. I have not really done anything on Linux since 5 or 6 years back. What I don’t understand is that Ubuntu can include a recompiled driver in the distribution, and openSuse can’t.

    It would be nice to know which versions I should use. I have a BCM4311 rev2.


  4. I will give it another go. Did you use the module for 12.2 recompiled on 13.2? Or did you download the latest Broadcom driver.

    BTW, did you try the suggestion in the first line of my comment as a solution to “I tried loading the wl.ko driver using modprobe but wireless did not work. Do not know why. Need to learn more about it.”??


    • I downloaded whatever source code was available on Broadcom website in November 2014, fixed a bug in it as described here, compiled and loaded it. There was nothing else that I needed to do. It just worked. Also, I have never had to recompile since November 2014.

      Did not find the time to try your suggestion. I will try it ASAP.


  5. I did not upgrade 12.2 to 13.2. But I did a new install, with the existing /home.

    The open source driver b43, seems to do something, but I cannot get rid of the hardware block, and 13.2 does not respond to the wifi key. The wl driver does not do anything, and keeps complaining that scanning fails. I recompiled it, but that did no thing either. I was expecting that it would, after all, it is a vendor provided driver.

    My laptop is an HP Business Notebook 8510P, which has a BCM4311 rev2 device. Unfortunately, there is no compatibility matrix on the Broadcom site.

    It is a real annoying problem. My wife was not to happy I installed 13.2, since she used the laptop on a daily basis for internet and webmail. Maybe I should go back to 12.2. Then it worked, but that was also after some hours work. Maybe I will even repair my HP Pavilion laptop (broken motherboard), and return to WIndows 7 😐 A refurbished motherboard costs about 100 Euros. Just to keep the wife happy 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s