Multiple devices lose association -Marvell 88W8363 - 2.0 RC1 - Wireless unstable

  • 2.0-RC1 (i386) built on Thu Mar 10 22:09:10 EST 2011
    Marvell 88W8363 mini pci 300M Wireless Notebook Card - Card in service for 4 days
    Alix 2D3 Full install on HDD

    There are 3 SSIDs.  WLANi3 WPA-2, WLANe3, Open/Captive portal, WAP01 WEP (legacy).
    WLANi3 and WAP01 bridged with LAN and comprise an interface group

    Signal level inconsistent on multiple devices.  Levels change spiranticly when a device is in a static location.
    Multiple devices lose association.

    Any help would be appreciated.  Please indicate if any logs are needed.


  • Rebel Alliance Developer Netgate

    Can you try this card with just one SSID and see if it works any better?

    I have on of these cards (it uses the mwl driver) but I don't have it in my ALIX right now. Last time I tried (more than a year ago) mutliple SSIDs didn't work at that point.

  • That did the trick.  Wireless has been up for 24hrs without a glitch.  Removed all virtual interfaces and now running a single SSID.

    FYI I was only able to disable 1 virtual interface in the WI.  When I disabled the last virtual interface it looked disabled in WI, but it was still broadcasting and could see it with an ifconfig.

    Unfortunately  I would like to have multiple SSIDs and I made my choice based on reading this forum, posting some questions to folks that have used this card (unfortunately the wrong questions) and consulted the pfSense Wireless Spreadsheet.  I'm out less than $20 so not a big deal.

    So you know what I'm going to ask.  What Atheros N MinPCI card will do the trick.  My old PC based pfSense box used a Belkin PCI card with Atheros chip-set with multiple virtual interfaces without a problem.  I do understand that N isn't fully supported, but I would like to buy once (make that twice) planning for the future.

    Thanks for your response.  I do apreciate your help.

  • I understand this is up to FreeBSD/mwl driver/Hardware limitation.  Do we have any idea if this device running under FreeBSD8.0/pfSense2.0 (or greater) will ever support multiple SSIDs?


  • TP-Link ( wireless cards seem to generally (but not always) use Atheros chipsets. The TL-WN961N and TL-WN861N use mini-PCI form factor and are 802.11N devices. There don't seem to be any mini-PCI-E cards. Perhaps you could send an email to TP-Link support to enquire about the chipsets used in their mini-PCI devices.

  • PCEngines ( also have some mini-PCI cards with 802.11n support and Atheros chipsets. You could probably ask them about support in pfSense 2.0.

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