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Is it possible to use iwlwifi during debian-installer?

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I have a ThinkPad X1 Carbon 4th gen which I’d like to install Debian on. This machine has an Intel 8260 wifi which will require non-free firmware. It has no external Ethernet port, so using that during install is not an option.

As per http://cdimage.debian.org/cdimage/unofficial/non-free/cd-including-firmware/ I wrote an ISO containing non-free firmware to a USB stick and booted debian-installer from it.

At no point does it ask me for firmware, nor does it load the iwlwifi and associated modules. It detects the e1000e Ethernet and loads modules for it, thus giving me an eth0, but this is not a physically usable port (you need to use a OneLink adaptor to get access to that).

So, given this is a netinst installer, I am unable to proceed.

I tried dropping to a shell and doing “modprobe iwlwifi” which appeared to work, but “ip” still does not list a wlan0 device.

Is there any way to force the debian-installer to realise it needs to load firmware for this wifi device? I have a feeling that it is seeing there is an eth0 and giving up at that point, assuming that is good enough.

Is it even possible to do a Debian install over wifi alone?

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1 answer

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arochester

“There are two types of image here:

Use the Live Image, not the Netinst? 

NN comments
grifferz
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You’re right, I should have tried that, but I ended up trying a stretch netinst (unofficial firmware again) and that asked for and detected the wiki firmware as I would expect. I was able to carry out a stretch net install completely over the wifi.

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