Need help using PCMCIA wireless card to connect to Net on G4



I've got a G4 Powerbook with Mac OX X 10.4 with Airport Extreme, and a SMC2532W-B 802.11b PCMCIA wireless card using drivers (I need the extended range capabilities of this card with an external antenna). I can connect to the Internet via Airport Extreme, but I don't know how to set up an Internet Connection through the SMC2532W-B card.

My drivers seem to be working, as the driver shows signal strength, it shows up in the Network Ports window.

If I disable Airport in the System Preferences, then my wireless card doesn't show up in the Airport software, so I assume that Airport doesn't provide support for non-Apple wireless cards. Is this right? Or do I just not have my hardware configured properly?

'scuze my ignorance, but is it my wireless card driver's responsibility to connect me to the Internet? I know the Airport menu has a "Open Internet Connection" that seems to work for getting Airport connected to the Internet, but what about just my more powerful PCMCIA card?

Much obliged for your sharing your greater understanding of how all of these network components work together...

Hi Eric and welcome to the forum,
my guess is that you have a driver problem. I am using a dlink pcmcia card together with my airport card and it works great. However, I am not using the IOXpert driver but the ones. I was checking the compatibility list but your card is not mentioned there.
When you open Network in the System Preferences, does the pcmcia card show up there together with your airport connection, your lan connection, ethernet ... ? What colour does the indicator next to it show? Did you follow the installation correctly? Did your card work with panther? Is the driver tiger-compatible?
In the end you might have to contact the IOXpert developers for help.
Zammy-Sam, Thanks for your welcome and reply. The drivers from are compatible with OS 10.4, and since my Powerbook only came with 10.4, I don't know whether it would work with other OS's.

I'm wondering if perhaps I'm just not really understanding how OS 10.4 "does" networking....

Under System Preferences > Network, the driver/card shows up as Ethernet Adapter (en2)-- I'm told this is normal--, with a checked box next to it, llike all of the other Port Configurations. When I "Show" the card to change configurations, everything seems normal.

I guess my main question is how AirPort fits into my wireless network configuration, and whether AirPort works with non-Apple cards. Or, is AirPort THE driver for AirPort Extreme, and it is really entirely up to my driver to a) connect to a network and b) connect to the Internet.

When you say you're using your wireless card without any problem, does the driver handle network and Internet connection? Or do you somehow have to use AirPort software for the Internet connection?

I wish I knew somewhere where I could read about all of the pieces of making a wireless network and how they fit together!

Thanks for the tip on, but my card uses the Prism 3 chipset, not the Atheros. Is the driver software good? Maybe I'll consider switching to a card with that chipset...


Hi Eric,
I was wondering how you solved your problem and if you found a more comprehensive site that covers all manner of Macintosh wireless connection issues.

I received a free Linksys Wireless-B Router (BEFW11S4) from my DSL provider. I'm trying to decipher how to chose a non-apple wireless PCM/CIA card to establish a wireless connection between my old Airport-less Powerbook G4 (867mhz) and my Desktop iMac G4 (800mhz) with the DSL modem/router combo attached (BOTH running OS-X 10.4).

Thanks in advance for any helpful info you can provide.