How to install a TP-Link TL WN821N USB Wireless N Dongle in Ubuntu 10.10

I’m disappointed that this doesn’t work out of the box, as I’m sure I consulted several Ubuntu lists which implied it would.


After MUCH searching, and several false starts:

I downloaded the drivers from by downloading the latest .tar file from

I untarred it.

Then opened up a terminal and entered

cd Downloads

cd compat-wireless-*

./scripts/driver-select ar9170


sudo make install

sudo make wlunload

modules=”cfg80211 mac80211 ar9170usb”

for i in $modules; do sudo modprobe $i; done

Hopefully this should have successfully loaded the drivers. Now we need the firmware

I downloaded this from:;a=blob_plain;f=ar9170-1.fw;hb=master;a=blob_plain;f=ar9170-2.fw;hb=master

There seem to be three versions, and I wasn’t sure which one to use, so I got them all!

Then I moved them into the ubuntu /lib/firmware directory

sudo mv ~/Downloads/ar9170.fw /lib/firmware

sudo mv ~/Downloads/ar9170-1.fw /lib/firmware

sudo mv ~/Downloads/ar9170-2.fw /lib/firmware

Reboot the PC, and you should have wireless!


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  1. #1 by Felipe Zavan (@felipezavan) on August 16, 2011 - 2:52 pm

    Thanks a lot, worked well, just followed the steps.

  2. #2 by Felipe Zavan (@felipezavan) on August 16, 2011 - 2:53 pm

    PS.: I did it in Ubuntu 11.04

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