Getting the RT3070 USB wifi adapter working in linux

Ralink must be one of the shittiest Linux supported network cards ever. I have a friend who’s not so good on computers, to the point where after reinstalling every  week for 3 weeks i suggested linux.

That sure saved me a lot of long drives to fix whatever went one, i could fix it with SSH. This has worked out great for both of us, especially since i moved 200 km away. She began on linux and is used to how it works, she loved it when we moved to ubuntu and she could install and remove things herself, and run updates.

Anyway, i digress, shes moving house on the coming weekend, and has a few coins leftover, and she wants to move to a wireless network. I thought “great! Linux support for most usb wifi isn’t too shabby, ill get something that works ‘out of the box’ if i can”. I went to ascent.co.nz and found this cheap card that said ‘Linux Compatible”. Well, I guess it was hoping for too much , but wasn’t expecting the problems i had.

The drivers on the cd wouldn’t compile because of the age/code/dependencies. I went to the ralink website and downloaded the latest drivers ( DPO_RT3070_LinuxSTA_V2.3.0.2_20100412 ). I ran into problems right away compiling for various reasons. Eventually i followed the following recipe to get this going.

unpackage it ;

cd DPO_RT3070_LinuxSTA_V2.3.0.2_20100412/
vi os/linux/usb_main_dev.c

Look for the following line
MODULE_DESCRIPTION(“RT2870 Wireless Lan Linux Driver”);
And add this one below it
MODULE_LICENSE(“GPL”);

Exit the editor, then do the following

sudo make
sudo cp RT2870STACard.dat RT3070STACard.dat
sudo cp RT2870STA.dat RT3070STA.dat
sudo make install
cd /etc/Wireless/
sudo ln -s RT3070STA RT2870STA
cd RT3070STA
sudo ln -s RT3070STA.dat RT2870STA.dat
sudo modprobe rt3070sta

if that works, throw the module in /etc/modules  (just the name rt3070sta ) so it loads on boot.

Now the key to all this is that ralink are cheap. They give a chip a new name, even though its clearly the same as previous ones. They do a quick run over the code to change all instances of 2870 to 3070 and of course forget half them, this is why there are odd cp’s and having to link thinks to work.

It seems that debian based distros like/need the GNU in the file, which seems to have been moved into another file in these drivers and its not registering. By adding it in it will load and work.

Let me know if this has helped you 🙂

Refs : http://www.linuxforums.org/forum/wireless-internet/161550-rt3070sta-module-license-unspecified-taints-kernel-solved.html

Waterproof camera cases – and my awesome sister!

For those that know me, know i do a little photography. I have always wanted to take it underwater, to the point of using Glad resealable bags with my cheap Fuji point n shoot camera (wouldn’t try that with my Canon 450D SLR camera!).

Yesterday i got home to a large parcel airmail. I opened it up and there was a pile of all sorts of waterproof gear from ipod pouches, waterproof earphones (now you can apparently listen to your iPod in the pool!), and a couple of waterproof camera cases all from Aquapec . It turns out it was an Xmas present from my totally awesome sister Angela

We promptly filled the bath and tested the point n shoot camera in the smaller camera bag. Results were interesting, the photos came out well but it was hard to try and get the camera sitting in the pouch in the right place as the bag was much larger than the camera. Also the lens protrudes when turned on and of course moves in and out which made life interesting. If pressure is put on the lens then it can push the lens off its rails or damage the camera. I was a little worried about this so i grabbed a toilet roll, cut it to size, then taped it onto the camera like this.

The bath isnt huge, so was a little hard to get good shots that were not ‘in your face’ too much. This is one of the resulting photos

Today we took the lot of it down to the swimming pools. We got a LOT of attention for taking so many cameras into the pool of course, but it was fun. The smaller camera is able to do video which was cool, though I havn’t watched ot downloaded from it (and wont until i can find its cable!).

I had trouble seeing through the viewfinder on the SLR a bit but that turned out to be my goggles, i switched through a few that we had including a face mask or two, and used a snorkel for better underwater time. I had some trouble with floating and not sinking enough, next time I will make a point of squeezing excessive air out of the bag and using a deeper pool. The SLR waterproof case looked like this

This meant that if the lens was shorter than the tube it was baggy at the end and the resulting photos had a nice vinegette going on from it. Ill have to hold that in place in future. width wise my 72mm lens only just fit into it, i wouldnt try any larger thats for sure! Here are a few more photos I took today from in the pool.