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Acer laptops come with a front panel where you have to push a button to activate your wireless or bluetooth card.



Since kernel 2.6.25

Linux Kernel Configuration: Kernel 2.6.25 or higher
 Device Drivers  --->
     Misc Drivers --->
         [*] Acer WMI Laptop Extras

Kernel 2.6.24 and older

Unfortunately the panel is not supported by the kernel <= 2.6.24 and thus you need to install a specific module in order to be able to use your wireless/bluetooth card at all. Unmask the newest version and install {{Ebuild:app-laptop/acer_acpi|acer_acpi}}:

echo 'app-laptop/acer_acpi' >> /etc/portage/package.keywords
emerge -a acer_acpi
Note: You need to have the kernel sources emerged and the symlink /usr/src/linux/ pointing at them.
Warning: When you change your kernel you need to recompile (reemerge) acer_acpi.


In order to activate the wireless you need to load the acer_acpi module and execute the following commands:

modprobe acer_acpi
echo 'enabled: 1' > /proc/acpi/acer/wireless  # Activating the wireless
echo 'enabled: 1' > /proc/acpi/acer/bluetooth # Activating the bluetooth

For acer_acpi 0.7 and onwards, 'enabled : 1' is deprecated, use:

echo 1 > /proc/acpi/acer/wireless # Activating the wireless
echo 1 > /proc/acpi/acer/bluetooth # Activating the bluetooth

Starting acer_acpi every time with Linux

First of all you need to activate the module to get automatically loaded on every start, assuming, that the needed interface is eth1:

echo 'acer_acpi' >> /etc/modules.autoload.d/kernel-2.6
echo 'config_eth1=( "echo enabled: 1 > /proc/acpi/acer/wireless" )' >> /etc/conf.d/net

You can find out which interface is the wireless by executing iwconfig. For most of the interfaces you will get a message like this one: 'no wireless extensions.' and only for a wireless you will get a bigger output.

Making the buttons usable

Francois Wautier suggests in his homepage to use a small script. However, he uses both the wireless button to active the wireless LAN and the bluetooth button to deactivate it. Please do note, that he uses ndiswrapper and not the kernel drivers for the wireless. The link to his script given on his website is not working anymore. Visit for a mirror.

See also

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Last modified: Sat, 30 Aug 2008 06:08:00 +0000 Hits: 4,887