Fix Purism Librem Wifi Problems

August 9, 2019
Offene Rückseite des Purism Librem Laptop mit dem Ausschnitt der W-Lan-Karte im Fokus.

Purism have been making really good Linux notebooks for some time now. They make a point of using FOSS, free and open source software, as much as possible. In the case of my recently acquired Librem 15v3, this means that I have to cope with an Atheros NF A222* Wi-Fi card. It has open drivers, but its performance is questionable to poor.

The solution is surprisingly simple: replace the Wi-Fi card!

The best replacement is the Intel Wireless-AC 9260¹, whose drivers are not (fully?) open, but which offers a significant improvement in quality. You have to be prepared to accept this, but in my opinion the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

The side of the card to be plugged in is not identical, but this can be ignored and, above all, the switches for deactivating the W-LAN, which are characteristic of Purism devices, still work.

The only thing to note is that the cables must be plugged into the main and AUX sockets in the same way as before, and the small sticker must be placed over the cables so that they do not come into contact with the case.

This should work with any laptop. To be on the safe side, you can download the drivers for Windows here first.

* Also listed under the model name Atheros QCNFA222
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