broadcom STA wireless driver “systemerror: installarchives() failed” on Ubuntu Maverick Dell Mini 7

broadcom STA wireless driver “systemerror: installarchives() failed” on Ubuntu Maverick Dell Mini

While attempting to Activate the proprietary Broadcom STA Wireless driver in Ubuntu 10.10 Maverick, I waited and then recieved the error, “systemerror: installarchives() failed”. I am using a Dell Inspiron Mini 1012. I am also booted into the Live USB install flash disk, not from my hard drive.

Some installs and uninstalls failed using the “Software Center.” So on to apt.

First thing I thought was, “we probably need our sources updated.” So, from terminal, run:

sudo apt-get update

(obviously, you will need to be connected to the “wired” ethernet and have a live internet connection, so make sure that’s working first.)

I had to do a little Googling,and I also checked in Software Center for anything with Broadcom in the search, and I found the bcmwl-kernel-source package. Let’s reinstall this and see if it works.
Next I ran:

sudo apt-get remove bcmwl-kernel-source

This process started to remove the package, but I noticed that it also was trying to remove DKMS Modules. This failed. Next, let’s try removing DKMS.

sudo apt-get remove dkms

That uninstalled ok, but then failed, again, on the bcmwl-kernel-source package. What’s the deal with this package?! Maybe just reinstalling inplace?

sudo apt-get --reinstall install bcmwl-kernel-source

Same problem!
Let’s try:

sudo apt-get -f --reinstall install bcmwl-kernel-source
sudo apt-get --purge remove bcmwl-kernel-source

Still not working! Fails on update-initramfs!
Seems that nothing I do will allow me to update/reinstall/fix this issue. The problem has something to do with the update-initramfs process and its not working on the USB stick. There may be some further log info, but what I found online was a bug in the “casper” system. I guess the USB sticks are not writable and update-initramfs will fail.
So I tried this: (be careful , you may end up with a non-bootable USB disk)

sudo apt-get install casper
sudo /usr/share/casper/casper-update-initramfs -u
sudo reboot

Woah!! Nice!! It worked on reboot!! Boom – Headshot! I didn’t even need to reinstall the Broadcom drivers! After booting into the Netbook Remix on the Live USB disk, once I clicked on the network manager icon, it showed me all the available wireless networks!

That was awesome! It felt like when I play Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 when I get a headshot, which always comes as a surprise to me. Boom! Headshot! And then I think, “Ok, that was cool! Didn’t expect that to work!” ROFL!

Well, now that I can see the Wifi is working, I’ll install on my hard disk.

Good luck!