Red Echo

January 27, 2012

Ava just got an Acer Aspire One, the 522 model. We installed Ubuntu 11.10, which is very pretty and which has an install procedure about as easy as it could possibly be. The machine worked fine for about a day, then started locking up, seemingly at random. Oh no!

Ava eventually noticed that the lock-up happened when the machine connected to the network. After poking at it for several hours and going through a handful of reinstalls, I found this page which explains the problem and offers a simple fix:

In fact, every time you try to connect to a wireless network, your netbook may freeze, the only option being a hard reset !

It seems that this bug comes from a conflict between the ethernet and the wireless adapter.

But the good news is that there is a very simple tip to avoid this bug : you need to setup a specific boot order, where the network boot is used first. With this setup, the ethernet adapter will be configured in a way that there won’t be any conflict with the wifi adpater at the time of wireless network connexion.

Ah, what a relief. The fix works perfectly.