The package says that the latest release of the Beaglebone Black, with a Debian image, includes the drivers for the Wi-Fi module. I have been using the Angstrom distribution, mainly because the Bluetooth adapters work much better with it however if I have Wi-Fi I would not need the Bluetooth adapter. So I decided to give the new Debian distribution another try with the Wi-Fi adapter.
Once I flashed the Debian image onto my Beaglebone Black (see instructions on how flashing the Beaglebone on the getting started page (http://beagleboard.org/getting-started)) I plugged the USB Wi-Fi adapter into the Belkin 7-Port USB Powered Hub that is connected to my BeagleBone Black. Logic Supply strongly recommends that due to the Wi-Fi adapter’s power consumption, you use a 5 Volt AC adapter, rather than powering the Beaglebone Black from USB, when using this adapter. I would say that is true with any USB Wi-Fi adapter, which is why connected the Wi-Fi adapter to the powered USB hub.
When I plugged the Wi-Fi adapter into the hub, I was hoping that the OS would detect the adapter and configure it then all I would have to do is to connect it to my Wi-Fi network. Well I was a bit disappointed but that is OK because I like a good challenge and since there were no instructions (who actually reads instructions anyway) it was up to me to figure out how to get it working.
The first thing I did was to unplug the Wi-Fi adapter from the USB hub. I then ran the following command to monitor any changes to the system log file and plugged the Wi-Fi adapter back in:
tail –f /var/log/syslog
After plugging the Wi-Fi adapter back in, the log revealed that the OS setup the adapter with the device name ra0. Once I had the device name, I open up the WICD Network Manager and went to the preferences to add the ra0 device name as the wireless interface.
I then clicked OK to go back to the main screen. On the main screen I waited a couple of seconds and then clicked Refresh to refresh the list of networks.
I found my network and clicked Properties to set the network properties
And then I was on my Wi-Fi network. I hope these instructions are able to assist others in configuring Logic Supply’s USB Wi-Fi adapter for the Beaglebone Black.