Wireless network configuration
Configuring wireless is a two-part process; the first part is to identify and ensure the correct driver for your wireless device is installed (they are available on the installation media, so make sure you install them), and to configure the interface. The second is choosing a method of managing wireless connections. This article covers both parts, and provides additional links to wireless management tools.
About new Arch Linux systems: The wireless drivers and tools are available during Arch set-up under the base-devel category. Be sure to install the proper driver for your card. Udev will usually load the appropriate module, thereby creating the wireless interface, in the initial live system of the installer, as well as the newly installed system on your hard drive. If you are configuring your wireless functionality after, and not during, Arch Linux installation, simply ensure the required packages are installed with pacman, (driver, firmware if needed, , , etc.) and follow the guidelines below. Note that may be optional depending on how recent your wireless hardware is.
- 1 Part I: Identify Card/Install Driver
- 1.1 Identify and Discover if Supported
- 1.2 Install user space tools
- 1.3 Drivers and firmware
- 1.3.1 rt2860 and rt2870
- 1.3.2 rt2x00
- 1.3.3 rt3573
- 1.3.4 rt5572
- 1.3.5 w322u
- 1.3.6 rtl8180
- 1.3.7 rtl8187
- 1.3.8 rtl8192e
- 1.3.9 rtl8192s
- 1.3.10 madwifi-ng
- 1.3.11 ath5k
- 1.3.12 ath9k
- 1.3.13 ath9k_htc
- 1.3.14 ipw2100 and ipw2200
- 1.3.15 iwl3945, iwl4965 and iwl5000-series
- 1.3.16 orinoco
- 1.3.17 ndiswrapper
- 1.3.18 prism54
- 1.3.19 ACX100/111
- 1.3.20 b43, broadcom-wl and brcmsmac (previously brcm80211)
- 1.3.21 zd1211rw
- 1.3.22 carl9170
- 1.3.23 hostap_cs
- 1.3.24 compat-wireless-patched
- 1.4 Test installation
- 2 Part II: Wireless management
- 3 See also
- 4 External links
Part I: Identify Card/Install Driver
Identify and Discover if Supported
First you will need to check and see if the Linux kernel has support for your card or if a user-space driver is available for it.
Identify your card
You can find your card type by command:
# lspci | grep -i net
Or, if you have a USB device, run:
Discover if the card is supported
- The Ubuntu Wiki has a good list of wireless cards and whether or not they are supported either in the Linux kernel or by a user-space driver (includes driver name).
- Linux Wireless Support and The Linux Questions' Hardware Compatibility List (HCL) also have a good database of kernel-friendly hardware.
- The kernel page additionally has a matrix of supported hardware.
If your card is not listed
If your wireless hardware is not listed above, likely it is supported only under Windows (some Broadcom, 3com, etc). For these, you will need to use ndiswrapper.
Ndiswrapper is a wrapper script that allows you to use some Windows drivers in Linux. See the compatibility list here. You will need the
.sys files from your Windows install. If you have a newer card, or a more exotic card, you might want to look up your exact model name and 'linux' and search the Internet before doing this step.
Install user space tools
If you have wired Internet access available
If you have wired Ethernet available and are simply adding wireless functionality to an existing system, and you did not include install the package .during initial installation, then
The drivers' corresponding package names are either highlighted in bold or via
monospaced font on this page. The packages can be installed during initial package selection on the Arch Linux installation media and can also be installed later.
If you have only wireless internet available
The base-devel group.package is now available as part of the base system and is also on the live installation media (CD/USB stick image) under the
You cannot initialize wireless hardware without these user-space tools, so ensure they are installed from the installer media, especially if you have no means of networking other than wirelessly. Otherwise, you will be stuck in a "catch 22" when you reboot your newly installed Arch Linux system: you will need and drivers, but in order to get them, you will need and drivers.
Drivers and firmware
The default Arch Linux kernel is modular, meaning many of the drivers for machine hardware reside on the hard drive and are available as modules. At boot, udev takes an inventory of your hardware. Udev will load appropriate modules (drivers) for your corresponding hardware, and the driver, in turn, will allow creation of a kernel interface.
The interface name for different drivers and chipsets will vary. Some examples are wlan0, eth1, and ath0.
modprobeit and add the module name in a
/etc/modules-load.d/. Note also that udev may occasionally load more than one driver for a device, and the resulting conflict will prevent successful configuration. Be sure to blacklist the unwanted module.
Methods and procedures for installing kernel modules for various chipsets are covered below. In addition, certain chipsets require the installation of corresponding firmware (also covered below). Read Kernel modules for general informations on operations with modules.
rt2860 and rt2870
From Linux kernel 3.0, the staging driver
rt2860sta is replaced by the mainline driver
rt2870sta is replaced by
rt2800usb. As a result, the staging drivers are deleted. Source: Kernel commit. The rt2800 driver automatically works with devices using the rt2870 chipset.
It has a wide range of options that can be configured with
iwpriv. These are documented in the source tarballs available from Ralink.
Unified driver for Ralink chipsets (replaces
rt73, etc). This driver has been in the Linux kernel since 2.6.24, but some devices may require extra firmware. It can be configured using the standard and
Some chips require a firmware file, which is installed by default in Arch Linux via the package.
New chipset as of 2012. It may require proprietary drivers from Ralink. Different manufacturers use it, see Belkin N750 example
New chipset as of 2012 with support for 5 Ghz bands. It may require proprietary drivers from Ralink and some effort to compile them. At the time of writing a how-to on compilation is available for a DLINK DWA-160 rev. B2 here.
Treat this Tenda card as an
rt2870sta device. See: rt2870
Realtek rtl8180 PCI/Cardbus 802.11b is now fully supported in the kernel. It can be configured using the standard
The driver is part of the current kernel package. It can be configured using the standard
Module initialization fails
The module initialization may fail at boot giving this error message :
rtl819xE:ERR in CPUcheck_firmware_ready() rtl819xE:ERR in init_firmware() step 2 rtl819xE:ERR!!! _rtl8192_up(): initialization is failed! r8169 0000:03:00.0: eth0: link down
A workaround is to simply unload the module:
# modprobe -r r8192e_pci
and reload the module (after a pause):
# modprobe r8192e_pci
The driver is part of the current kernel package. Firmware may need to be added manually if
/lib/firmware/RTL8192SU/rtl8192sfw.bin does not exist. (
dmesg will report "rtl819xU:FirmwareRequest92S(): failed" if the firmware is missing)
To download and install firmware:
$ wget http://launchpadlibrarian.net/33927923/rtl8192se_linux_2.6.0010.1012.2009.tar.gz # mkdir /lib/firmware/RTL8192SU # tar -xzOf rtl8192se_linux_2.6.0010.1012.2009.tar.gz \ rtl8192se_linux_2.6.0010.1012.2009/firmware/RTL8192SE/rtl8192sfw.bin > \ /lib/firmware/RTL8192SU/rtl8192sfw.bin
There are three modules maintained by the MadWifi team:
ath_pciis the older driver.
ath5kwill eventually phase out
ath_pci. Currently a better choice for some chipsets, but not all chipsets are supported (see below)
ath9kis the new, official, superior driver for newer Atheros hardware (see below)
ath_pci driver, install package AUR and optionally AUR. Then:
# modprobe ath_pci
ath_pci, you may need to blacklist
ath5k. See Kernel_modules#Blacklisting for instructions.
Some users may need to use the
countrycode option when loading the MadWifi driver in order to use channels and transmit power settings that are legal in their country/region. In the Netherlands, for example, you would load the module like this:
# modprobe ath_pci countrycode=528
You can verify the settings with the
iwlist command. See
man iwlist and the CountryCode page on the MadWifi wiki. To have this setting automatically applied during boot, add the following to
options ath_pci countrycode=528
/etc/modprobe.confis no longer read; instead,
/etc/modprobe.d/modprobe.confis used. link
ath5k is the preferred driver for AR5xxx chipsets including those which are already working with
madwifi-ng and for some chipsets older than AR5xxx.
ath5k is conflicting with
ath_pci on your system, blacklist (and unload using
rmmod or reboot) the following drivers:
ath_hal ath_pci ath_rate_amrr ath_rate_onoe ath_rate_sample wlan wlan_acl wlan_ccmp wlan_scan_ap wlan_scan_sta wlan_tkip wlan_wep wlan_xauth
modprobe ath5k manually or reboot. wlan0 (or wlanX) in sta mode should spawn and become ready to use.
echo none > "/sys/class/leds/ath5k-phy0::tx/trigger" echo none > "/sys/class/leds/ath5k-phy0::rx/trigger"For alternatives, look here.
rmmod ath5k modprobe ath5k nohwcrypt
And restart your connection. If it helps, make the change permanent by adding into
options ath5k nohwcryptMore about modprobe options: Modprobe#Options
ath9k is Atheros' officially supported driver for the newer 802.11n chipsets. All of the chips with 802.11n capabilities are supported, with a maximum throughput around 180 Mbps. To see a complete list of supported hardware, check this page.
Working modes: Station, AP and Adhoc.
ath9k has been part of the Linux kernel as of v2.6.27. (In the unlikely event that you have stability issues that trouble you, you could try using the compat-wireless package.
An ath9k mailing list exists for support and development related discussions.)
ath9k_htc is Atheros' officially supported driver for 802.11n USB devices. Station and Ad-Hoc modes are supported. Since 2.6.35, the driver has been included in the kernel. For more information, see http://wireless.kernel.org/en/users/Drivers/ath9k_htc .
ipw2100 and ipw2200
These modules are fully supported in the kernel, but they require additional firmware. It can be configured using the standard
Depending on which of the chipsets you have, install either or .
If installing after initial Arch Linux installation, the module may need to be reloaded for the firmware to be loaded; run the following as root:
rmmod ipw2200 modprobe ipw2200
Enabling the radiotap interface
Launch the following as root:
rmmod ipw2200 modprobe ipw2200 rtap_iface=1
Enabling the LED
Most laptops will have a front LED to indicate when the wireless is connected (or not). Add the following to
options ipw2200 led=1
iwl3945, iwl4965 and iwl5000-series
Intel's open source Wi-Fi drivers for Linux (See iwlwifi) will work for both the 3945 and 4965 chipsets since kernel 2.6.24. And iwl5000-series chipsets (including 5100BG, 5100ABG, 5100AGN, 5300AGN and 5350AGN) have been supported since kernel 2.6.27, by the in-tree driver iwlagn.
Since the 2.6.34 kernel update, the firmware files were moved to the
linux-firmware package. Manually installing firmware packages is not required.
Loading the Driver
udev should load the driver automatically. To manually load the driver at startup, edit
/etc/rc.conf as root and add
iwl4965 respectively to the
MODULES array. For example:
MODULES=( ... b44 mii iwl3945 snd-mixer-oss ...)
The drivers should now load after a reboot, and running
ip addr from a terminal should report wlan0 as a new network interface.
The default settings on the module are to have the LED blink on activity. Some people find this extremely annoying. To have the LED on solid when Wi-Fi is active (yes, this works on non-systemd systems too):
# echo 'w /sys/class/leds/phy0-led/trigger - - - - phy0radio' > /etc/tmpfiles.d/phy0-led.conf # systemd-tmpfiles --create phy0-led.conf
To see all the possible trigger values for this LED:
# cat /sys/class/leds/phy0-led/trigger
- Old way, if you don't have /sys/class/leds/py0-led
# echo "options iwlcore led_mode=1" >> /etc/modprobe.d/modprobe.conf # rmmod iwlagn # rmmod iwlcore # modprobe iwlcore # modprobe iwlagn
On Linux kernels 188.8.131.52-1 and up, the
iwlcore module was deprecated. Use
options iwlagn led_mode=1 or
options iwl_legacy led_mode=1 instead (find out what module is loaded with
options iwlegacy led_mode=1.
- The MS Windows NETw4x32 driver can be used with ndiswrapper as an alternative to the
- In some cases (specifically a Dell Latitude D620 with Arch 2008.06, though it could happen elsewhere), after installation you may have both
/etc/rc.conf. The card will not work with both modules loaded, so you will have to blacklist the
/etc/modprobe.d/modprobe.confand then reboot or remove the module manually before you can use your wireless card.
- By default,
iwl3945is configured to only work with networks on channels 1-11. Higher frequency bands are not allowed in some parts of the world (e.g. the US). In the EU however, channels 12 and 13 are used quite commonly (and Japan allows for channel 14). To make
iwl3945scan for all channels, add
options cfg80211 ieee80211_regdom=EUto
iwlist fyou can check which channels are allowed.
- If you want to enable more channels on Intel Wifi 5100 (and quite possible other cards too), you can do that with the
crdapackage. After installing the package, edit
/etc/conf.d/wireless-regdomand uncomment the line where your country code is found. Add
/etc/rc.confand restart (which is the easiest thing to do). When executing
sudo iwlist wlan0 channel, you should now have access to more channels (depending on your location).
- Wi-Fi power management can be enabled by adding the following line:
iwconfig wlan0 power on
iw dev wlan0 set power_save on
if you want to use the new iw tool.
/etc/rc.local (change wlan0 to whatever your wireless interface is named). If it does not work, you may also need to create the following empty file
This should be a part of the kernel package and be installed already.
orinocodriver and gain WPA support. See this post for more information.
To use the driver, blacklist
/etc/modprobe.d/modprobe.conf, and then add
# echo "blacklist orinoco_cs" >> /etc/modprobe.d/modprobe.conf
Ndiswrapper is not a real driver, but you can use it when there are no native Linux kernel drivers for your wireless chipset, so it is very useful in some situations. To use it, you need the
*.inf file from your Windows driver (the
*.sys file must also be present in the same directory). Be sure to use drivers appropriate to your architecture (i.e. 32/64bit). If you need to extract these files from an
*.exe file, you can use either
Follow these steps to configure ndiswrapper.
1. Install the driver to
ndiswrapper -i filename.inf
2. List all installed drivers for ndiswrapper
3. Write configuration file in
ndiswrapper -m depmod -a
Now the ndiswrapper install is almost finished; you just have to update
/etc/rc.conf to load the module at boot (below is an example configuration; yours might look slightly different):
The important part is making sure that ndiswrapper exists on this line, so just add it alongside the other modules. It would be best to test that ndiswrapper will load now, so:
modprobe ndiswrapper iwconfig
and wlan0 should now exist. Check this page if you are having problems: Ndiswrapper installation wiki.
Download the firmware driver for your appropriate card from this site. Rename the firmware file to
If non-existent, create the directory
/lib/firmware and move the file
isl3890 inside it. This should do the trick. 
If that did not work, try this:
- Reload the prism module (
modprobe p54pci, depending on your hardware)
Alternatively, remove your Wi-Fi card and then reconnect it.
- Use the
dmesgcommand, and look at the end of the output it prints out.
Look for a section similar to this:
firmware: requesting isl3887usb_bare p54: LM86 firmware p54: FW rev 184.108.40.206 - Softmac protocol 3.0
and try renaming the firmware file to the name corresponding to the part bolded here.
If you get the message
SIOCSIFFLAGS: Operation not permitted
ip link set wlan0 up OR
prism54: Your card/socket may be faulty, or IRQ line too busy :(
dmesg's output this may be because you have both the deprecated kernel module
prism54 and one of the newer kernel modules (
p54usb) loaded at the same time and they are fighting over ownership of the IRQ. Use the command
lsmod | grep prism54 to see if the deprecated module is being loaded. If so, you need to stop
prism54 from loading by blacklisting it (there are several ways to do this which are described elsewhere). Once blacklisted, you may find you have to rename the firmware as
p54usb look for different firmware filenames (i.e. recheck the
dmesg output after performing
ip link set eth0 up).
The driver should tell you which firmware it needs; check
/var/log/messages.log or use the
Link the appropriate firmware to
ln -s /usr/share/tiacx/acx111_220.127.116.11/tiacx111c16 /lib/firmware
For another way to determine which firmware revision number to use, see the "Which firmware" section of the acx100.sourceforge wiki. For ACX100, you can follow the links provided there to a table of card model numbers vs. "firmware files known to work"; you can figure out the rev. number you need, by looking at the suffix there. For example, a dlink_dwl650+ uses "1.9.8.b", in which case you would do this:
ln -s /usr/share/tiacx/acx100_1.9.8.b/* /lib/firmware
If you find that the driver is spamming your kernel log, for example because you are running Kismet with channel-hopping, you could put this in
options acx debug=0
acxdriver does not support WPA/RSN encryption. Ndiswrapper will have to be used with the Windows driver to enable the enhanced encryption. See ndiswrapper, this page, for more details.
b43, broadcom-wl and brcmsmac (previously brcm80211)
See the Broadcom wireless page.
zd1211rw is a driver for the ZyDAS ZD1211 802.11b/g USB WLAN chipset, and it is included in recent versions of the Linux kernel. See  for a list of supported devices. You only need to install the firmware for the device, provided by the package.
carl9170 is the 802.11n USB driver with GPLv2 firmware for Atheros USB AR9170 devices. It supports these devices. The firmware is not yet part of the package; it is available in the AUR ( AUR). The driver is a part of the Linux kernel v2.6.37 and higher.
In order to use this driver, the following older driver modules must be blacklisted:
Host AP is the Linux driver for Prism2/2.5/3 like WCP11.
hostap_cs should be a part of the
linux package and should be installed already.
orinico_cs can cause problems, so it must be blacklisted. After blacklisting, the driver should work.
More information：Home page
Patched compat wireless drivers correct the "fixed-channel -1" issue, whilst providing better injection. Please install the AUR.AUR package from the
AUR does not conflict with any other package and the modules built reside in
These patched drivers come from the Linux Wireless project and support many of the above mentioned chips such as:
ath5k ath9k_htc carl9170 b43 zd1211rw rt2x00 wl1251 wl12xx ath6kl brcm80211
atheros ath iwlagn rtl818x rtlwifi wl12xx atlxx bt
It is also possible to build a specific module/driver or a group of drivers by editing the PKGBUILD, particularly uncommenting the line #46. Here is an example of building the atheros group:
Please read the package's PKGBUILD for any other possible modifications prior to compilation and installation.
After loading your driver, run
ip link to ensure a wireless interface (e.g. wlanX, ethX, athX) is created.
If no such interface is visible, modprobing it might work. To start your driver, use the
modprobe commands. If
rmmod fails, continue with
modprobe. See Kernel modules for more info.
Example: If your driver is called "driverXXX", you would run the following commands:
# rmmod driverXXX # modprobe driverXXX
Bring the interface up with
ip link set <interface> up. For example, assuming the interface is wlan0:
# ip link set wlan0 up
If you get this error message:
SIOCSIFFLAGS: No such file or directory, it most certainly means your wireless chipset requires a firmware to function, which you need to install as explained above.
Part II: Wireless management
Assuming that your drivers are installed and working properly, you will need to choose a method for managing your wireless connections. The following subsections will help you decide the best way to do just that.
Procedure and tools required will depend on several factors:
- The desired nature of configuration management; from a completely manual command line setup procedure to a software-managed, automated solution.
- The encryption type (or lack thereof) which protects the wireless network.
- The need for network profiles, if the computer will frequently change networks (such as a laptop).
The manual method requires more work from you, but gives you much more control over your configuration. Usually you will have to enter a set of commands which have no persistant effect, i.e. they won't apply after a reboot. Either you enter those commands on every boot which may be quite cumbersome, or you put all these commands in a shell script to automate the process. This script can even be executed automatically at boot time. See Arch Boot Process.
The following table shows the different methods that can be used to activate and manage a wireless network connection, depending on the encryption and management types, and the various tools that are required. Although there may be other possibilities, these are the most frequently used:
|Management||No encryption/WEP||WPA/WPA2 PSK|
|Automatically managed, with network profiles support|| |
More choice guide:
|auto connect at boot|| with
| auto connect if dropped
or changed location
|support 3G Modem||yes|
| GUI (proposes to manage and connect/disconnect
profiles from a systray icon.
Automatic wireless detection is also available)
|console tools|| with
Please note that the Linux wireless extensions and corresponding commands like
iwconfig become deprecated and replaced by
iw. This is not fully reflected in this wiki yet and both work still. A comparison of common commands is found on Linuxwireless.
Whatever your choice, you should really try to connect using the manual method first. This will help you understand the different steps that are required and debug them in case a problem arose. Another tip: if possible (e.g. if you manage your Wi-Fi access point), try connecting with no encryption, to check everything works. Then try using encryption, either WEP (simpler to configure -- but crackable in a matter of seconds, so it is hardly more secure than an unencrypted connection), WPA, or WPA2.
When it comes to ease of use, NetworkManager (with GNOME's
wicd have good GUI's and can provide a list of available networks to connect, and they prompt for passwords, which is straightforward and highly recommended. WPA Supplicant has also a GUI configuration tool, .
The programs provided by the packageare the basic set of tools to set up a wireless network. Moreover, if you use WPA/WPA2 encryption, you will need the package . These powerful user-space console tools work extremely well and allow complete, manual control from the shell.
These examples assume your wireless device is wlan0. Replace wlan0 with the appropriate device name.
(Optional, may be required) At this step you may need to set the proper operating mode of the wireless card. More specifically, if you are going to connect an ad-hoc network, you might need to set the operating mode to ad-hoc:
# iwconfig wlan0 mode ad-hoc
Or, alternatively, for the new netlink interface
# iw wlan0 set type ibss
ip link set wlan0 down).
(Also optional, may be required) Some cards require that the kernel interface be activated before you can use the
# ip link set wlan0 up
Access point discovery
See what access points are available:
# iwlist wlan0 scan | less
Or, alternatively, for the new netlink interface
# iw dev wlan0 scan |less
iwlistas root. Also, your wireless network card may be soft-blocked. Try getting and running
rfkill list allto check.
The important points to check:
- ESSID: the "name" of the access point.
- Quality: in general try something above 40/70.
- Encryption key: if it is "on", check if you can see any line regarding
- WEP, WPA, or RSN. Note that RSN and WPA2 are different names for the protocol.
- Group cipher: value in TKIP, CCMP, both, others.
- Pairwise ciphers: value in TKIP, CCMP, both, others. Not necessarily the same value than Group cipher.
- Authentication Suites: value in PSK, 802.1x, others. For home router, you'll usually find PSK (i.e. passphrase). In universities, you are more likely to find 802.1x suite which requires login and password. Then you will need to know which key management is in use (e.g. EAP), and what encapsulation it uses (e.g. PEAP). Find more details at Wikipedia:List_of_authentication_protocols and the sub-articles.
Depending on the encryption, you need to associate your wireless device with the access point to use and pass the encryption key.
Assuming you want to use the ESSID
- No encryption
# iwconfig wlan0 essid "MyEssid"
Or, alternatively, for the new netlink interface
# iw wlan0 connect MyEssid
using a hexadecimal key:
# iwconfig wlan0 essid "MyEssid" key 1234567890
using an ASCII key:
# iwconfig wlan0 essid "MyEssid" key s:asciikey
# wpa_supplicant -i wlan0 -c /etc/wpa_supplicant.conf
This is assuming your device uses the
wext driver. If this does not work, you may need to adjust these options.
If connected successfully, continue in a new terminal (or quit
wpa_supplicant with Template:Keypress and add the
-B switch to the above command to run it in the background). WPA_Supplicant contains more information and troubleshooting.
Regardless of the method used, you can check if you have associated successfully as follows:
# iwconfig wlan0
Or, alternatively, for the new netlink interface
# iw dev wlan0 link
Getting an IP address
Finally, provide an IP address to the network interface. Simple examples are:
# dhcpcd wlan0
for DHCP, or
# ip addr add 192.168.0.2/24 dev wlan0 # ip route add default via 192.168.0.1
for static IP addressing.
autofor the specific device.
# iwconfig wlan0 channel auto
Before changing the channel to auto, make sure your wireless interface (in this case, 'wlan0') is down. After it has successfully changed it, you can again bring the interface up and continue from there.
There are many solutions to choose from, but remember that all of them are mutually exclusive; you should not run two daemons simultaneously.
netcfg provides a versatile, robust and fast solution to networking on Arch Linux.
netcfg uses a profile based setup and is capable of detection and connection to a wide range of network types. This is no harder than using graphical tools.
Wicd is a network manager that can handle both wireless and wired connections. It is written in Python and Gtk with fewer dependencies than NetworkManager, making it an ideal solution for lightweight desktop users. Wicd is available in the official repositories.
NetworkManager is an advanced network management tool that is enabled by default in most popular GNU/Linux distributions. In addition to managing wired connections, NetworkManager provides worry-free wireless roaming with an easy-to-use GUI program for selecting your desired network.
WiFi Radar is a Python/PyGTK2 utility for managing wireless profiles (and only wireless). It enables you to scan for available networks and create profiles for your preferred networks.
See: Wifi Radar
wlassistant is a very intuitive and straight-forward GUI application for managing your wireless connections.
Install the AUR.AUR package from the
wlassistant must be run with root privileges:
One method of using wlassistant is to configure your wireless card within
/etc/rc.conf, specifying the access point you use most often. On start-up, your card will automatically be configured for this ESSID, but if other wireless networks are needed/available,
wlassistant can then be invoked to access them. Background the
network daemon in
/etc/rc.conf, by prefixing it with a
@ to avoid boot-up delays.