April 24, 2013

Reinstalling Arch.

Recently I decided to reinstall Arch Linux on my laptop because why not? Everything is working, with the major exception of wireless. As you may recall, Arch Linux does not play nice with Broadcom wireless chips.

For those that don't keep up with Arch Linux changes, in late 2012/early 2013 (I don't actually recall which) they switched from init scripts to systemd for system start up. Well, now (in April 2013) they have made the switch from the old network connection manager called netcfg to a new network manager called netctl. One of the primary reasons for this move is that netctl has better integration with systemd.

This [of course] breaks everything network-related. In the past 36 hours, I have spent absurd amounts of time attempting to connect to my school's WAP2-Enterprise network, all to no avail. Network Manager (included with the GNOME3 group in the arch repositories) has been my favorite network manager to date, but it seems to not currently work with netcfg OR netctl. Getting annoyed with network manager caused me to decide to try connecting with wicd, which I have heard wonderful things about but have never tried. After attempting to get a connection up using wicd and netctl, I got tired and decided to go to bed.

Cue today. I figured that if wicd wouldn't connect with netctl, I'd give it a shot with netcfg. I haven't started yet, and I think at this point that I'm just going to wait until tomorrow or Monday (I'm gone all weekend) because it's been a pretty decent day and I don't feel like getting frustrated [again].

Long story short, I'm not entirely sure that netctl currently supports WPA2-Enterprise connections and the current documentation says nothing about any kind of WPA2 encryption. Assuming netcfg works, I'm just going to assume this is the case, because the other option is that my wireless card is borked (which wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing).

TL;DR: netctl says nope, gonna try netcfg.