How To Install Intel Pro Wireless 3945 On CentOS Linux

This article has been taken from my blog site

In this tutorial, I will guide you through the necessary steps to install ipw3945 wireless adapter on a CentOS / RHEL based distribution.It is written for CentOS 5.2. However, it might work on other CentOS 5.x based distributions as well.


Step 1.

You need to have rpmforge-release package installed. You can download it from DAG (


Step 2.

yum install ipw3945d ipw3945-firmware dkms dkms-ipw3945 wpa_supplicant


Step 3.

vi /etc/sysconfig/wpa_supplicant

It should look like this;

# wlan0 and wifi0
# INTERFACES="-iwlan0 -iwifi0"
# ndiswrapper and prism
# DRIVERS="-Dndiswrapper -Dprism"


Step 4.

Edit wpa_supplicant.conf. On this example, there are two networks configured and both of them are WPA-1.

vi /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf
#Work WPA-1
psk="mysecretpassword" #Pre-shared key here
#Home WPA-1
psk="mysecretpassword" #Pre-shared key here


Step 5.

Create your wireless interface configuration file.

vi /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth1
HWADDR=00:00:00:00:00:00 # Your wireless adapters's MACid

Tip: To learn your wireless adapter's MACid use

ifconfig -a


Step 6.

Start required services on boot;

chkconfig ipw3945d on

chkconfig wpa_supplicant on


Step 7.

You should modify the startup scripts to change the boot order that work with wpa_supplicant.

vi /etc/init.d/ipw3945d

# chkconfig: 345 10 90

vi /etc/init.d/network

# chkconfig: 2345 13 87

vi /etc/init.d/wpa_supplicant

# chkconfig:   - 14 88

To use the new boot order, first disable services, then re-enable.

To disable:

chkconfig network off

chkconfig ipw3945d off

chkconfig wpa_supplicant off

To enable the new boot order;

chkconfig network on

chkconfig ipw3945d on

chkconfig wpa_supplicant on


Step 8.

Also, disable NetworkManager and NetworkManagerDispatcher services.

chkconfig NetworkManager off

chkconfig NetworkManagerDispatcher off


Step 9.

Install dhclient package.

yum install dhclient


Step 10.

Install wpa_gui package. It is an easy to use network configuration application.

yum install wpa_gui


Step 11.

Run wpa_gui application and connect to the network.

wpa_gui &


Step 12.

Try to request an IP address from the network.

dhclient eth1


You should see your IP address on wpa_gui's main window.

Tip: To scan wireless networks, use;

iwlist eth1 scan


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