DLink DWL-520

Reviewed by: MichaelRasmussen

Review Date: June 9, 2002

Model Number: DWL-520 (Note: The DlinkDwl520Plus uses a completely different chipset and currently will not work with Linux -- Adam 12 Nov 2002)

Manufacturer: D-Link

Cost: $69.95 after $20 mail in rebate (Frys)

Operating Systems: Comes with Windows drivers on CD. Linux drivers seem to be available from wlan project.


This is a Prism 2.5 based card. However it seems to require a PCI 2.2 slot for operation. This is not mentioned on the box. It is mentioned in the data sheet you can download from D-Link http://www.dlink.com/products/wireless/dwl520/ and explained in this FAQ ftp://ftp.linux-wlan.org/pub/linux-wlan-ng/FAQ under question 4.

PCI 2.2 is a newish standard, if your motherboard documentation does not explicitly mention it you don't have it.

Hopefully someone with a system that supports this card will have something to add here.

For now I'm getting ready to drive to Wilsonville.

Update 06/12/2002

Seems to work fine on Intel based PCI 2.1 YMMV

I have a DWL-520 in a rather old machine (it's a P200 running on an Intel 430TX motherboard which supports PCI 2.1) and am currently using the Host AP driver for Intersil Prism 2/2.5/3 with no problems.

Jun 10 11:24:30 blowfish kernel: PCI: PCI BIOS revision 2.10 entry at 0xfb560, last bus=0 
Jun 10 11:24:30 blowfish kernel: wlan0: Intersil Prism2.5 PCI: mem=0xe0410000, irq=7

-Vigilant WLF

Update 6/14/2002

One of the most important things this works with is the Soekris http://www.soekris.com 4501. Namely that the card is 3v and the slot is PCI 2.2 or close enough.

I have deployed this in a decently old PII motherboard, the Intel SE2 based on the 440BX.

Also of note is that it works very well with the venerable HostApMode drivers.

-- JerrittCollord


Is this card really a "pure" PCI card or does it use a PCI-to-PCMCIA bridge chip internally?

Could someone please do a lspci on his Dwl520-equipped system?

I'm asking because I own a Tyan Tiger MPX dual Athlon mainboard with a braindead BIOS that doesn't deal correctly with PCI-to-PCMCIA bridges (they get no IRQ). And it's odd not to have wireless, you know ;(

I already tried different PCI-to-PCMCIA adaptors and even put them into one of the 64Bit slots, but nothing worked. I did even install Win2000 ( 8-X ) to verify if it is a Linux problem, but it didn't work, too.

So AVOID this board if you wanna do wireless.

-- ThomasWaldmann

According to D-Link, the DWL-520 will only work on a PCI 2.2 board (still quite rare). However, some people have reported success in getting it to work in some later PCI 2.1 machines, particularly name brand mainboards; I am currently using mine in a PCI 2.1 IBM 300gl P-II 350. If you have a PCI 2.1 board, however, don't expect it to work. The card should light up on powering up the computer; if it doesn't, then don't waste any time trying to get the drivers to work - they won't, no matter what OS you use.

I bought this card because it had a removable antenna, presumably making it easier to put an extension antenna on, which I have done. However, as with most consumer-level equipment of this nature, the connectors are non-standard (this is a "reverse-SMA"), which means finding a connector will not be as easy as going to your local electronics supply store.


D-Link DWL-520 E1 work on Intel Advanced/ML (Intel AA number 654850-206) and Intel TC430HX (AA 677270-605). These motherboards support Pentium /MMX processors LZIggy

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