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I recently upgraded my 12.10 installation on my Alienware m11x laptop, and lost both my network cards (wired and wireless network). How do I get them back? I would like a solution that doesn't involve going to my work computer and downloading files on a USB stick to get on the laptop; instead I would like to see a solution where the partial upgrade is reverted back to what was functioning before, so I can retry the upgrade.

The upgrade was aborted halfway through because the network went down and/or because the laptop was running out of batteries. I am not sure, but I don't think the upgrade was a problem in itself, rather the problem was that the upgrade was aborted in the middle of it all.

Output of lspci -nn includes:

0d:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Intel Corporations Centrino Wireless-N 1000 [8086:0083]
07:00.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: Atheros Communications Inc. AR8151 v2.0 Gigabit Ethernet [1969:1083]

sudo ifconfig wlan0 up yields:

wlan0: ERROR while getting interface flags: No such device


contains lo but nothing else (only loopback network device)

lshw -class Network returns:

*-network UNCLAIMED
...some info on AR8151 ethernet controller...
*-network UNCLAIMED
...some info on wireless controller...

rfkill list all returns nothing at all

share|improve this question
From which version to which version was that "partial upgrade"? – guntbert Jan 30 '13 at 14:45
12.10 was the version... Hmm, maybe "partial upgrade" is the wrong words to use? Maybe update is more appropriate? I had 12.10 installed, and had new versions of packages that was downloaded and applied... So the version of Ubuntu was always 12.10 but the version of packages is various new versions... – GaRyu Jan 30 '13 at 15:32
Ok (you always get new versions with an update) - next question: did you see any errors during that update? (I try to understand the situation...) – guntbert Jan 30 '13 at 16:38
There were no errors. The download speed gradually decreased towards zero, I left the computer on because I figured it would pick up again, but the computer ran out of batteries. When I restarted, both network cards were gone. Of course, now the update isn't able to run because there is no network access. BTW, it is not a hardware issue; I can use the network in windows dual-boot. – GaRyu Jan 31 '13 at 8:49
Ah, now I understand the term "partial update" – guntbert Jan 31 '13 at 16:02

In /var/cache/apt/archives, there should be .deb files from previous upgrades. You should be able to use these to downgrade using dpkg.

If you know what packages you want to downgrade, simply locate the oldest/previous version .deb of the program, and type sudo dpkg -i <name of .deb here> into a terminal. It might warn you about downgrading - just type y.

Since you don't know which packages got upgraded, and there could potentially be many packages that need to be downgraded, you could copy a single version of each program in the archives folder to a separate folder, and then run sudo dpkg -i *.deb while in the folder.

Once everything's downgrading correctly, just upgrade again!


share|improve this answer
I couldn't find anything there that seems to be a package that changes anything to do with the network. So I just ran sudo dpkg -i *.deb on the entire folder. Compiz crashed during this, and I got a few other messages like "There seems to be a problem, do you wish to report it?" But all the installations finished without error messages in the terminal, so I think the installation in itself was OK. However, my problem still persists after I rebooted. – GaRyu Feb 10 '13 at 16:02
Did you upgrade again after downgrading everything? – DaimyoKirby Feb 10 '13 at 18:10
Also, it seems there are drivers for your wireless, so I would try checking in jockey if there are drivers to install/reinstall, or try directly installing from the Linux Wireless site. – DaimyoKirby Feb 10 '13 at 18:21
Of course not. I can't upgrade anything when the network is down. As long as the network isn't working, I'm stuck. No new packages available, because there is no internet connection when the network isn't working. Also, since everything was working before, I should be able to fix it without downloading drivers (there should be something on my harddrive that can be used). But yeah, I'll do it the stupid way and try to take the drivers on a USB stick, since no one here seems to know how to work around this problem. – GaRyu Feb 12 '13 at 10:40
Oh, woops, duh; sometimes the stupidity of my comments astounds me. Yes, installing the drivers off a flash drive should work about the same way as installing updates without an internet connection – DaimyoKirby Feb 13 '13 at 3:16

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