Where to purchase compatible wifi 6 and 5g modules in US?

Hi!

I’m having trouble trying to find where I can order compatible WiFi 6 / 5g cards for the Ten64 (inside the US). None of the part names on Hardware Compatibility List - Traverse Ten64 Documentation or Hardware Compatibility List - Traverse Ten64 Documentation seem to turn up anything on Amazon or Newegg.

I am also a bit unclear what type of antennas I should be purchasing to go with the hardware that would be compatible with the Ten64 case. The “MA963 Guardian 4-in-1 5G/4G MIMO Wideband Adhesive Mount Antenna” device seems recommended and includes a buy link – but which 5g card should be paired with it?

Does someone have a parts list with where to order (inside the US) to add WiFi 6 and 5g support to your Ten64 device?

Just FYI, my current plan is to use the hardware with Google Fi data sims in both US and Australia.

Thanks!

Tim ‘mithro’ Ansell

Has anyone tried the “ThinkStation Fibocom L860-GL CAT16 WWAN Module” (ThinkStation Fibocom L860-GL CAT16 WWAN Module | Lenovo US). It seems like there is some stuff at https://github.com/xmm7360/xmm7360-pci and Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (Gen 6) - ArchWiki.

Some of the Compex WiFi 6 modules I have tested are available on from Arrow Electronics (arrow.com):
https://www.arrow.com/en/products/wle3000h5/compex-systems-pte-ltd?q=WLE3000H5
There are supply issues with Qualcomm WiFi chipsets at the moment, meaning many cards/modules are very hard to get.

We have been evaluating alternative vendors, but most of them don’t have the level of support in mainline Linux and OpenWrt that Qualcomm/Atheros does.

Sources for 5G modules from the US I don’t have as much knowledge on. I have seen some modules pop up on Digikey and Mouser, like:
Quectel RM500Q
Thales MV31-W

I’d caution that the price for the Quectel RM500Q on Mouser is significantly higher than what they are available for in distribution channels, I would recommend shopping around.

The Thales (Gemalto) MV31 should work but we haven’t had an opportunity to retest it since the production version became available - it is on my TODO list.

The MA693 works well with any modem card with 4 antenna connectors. The caveats are that it’s a bulky external unit (best placed up a pole or in a window) and isn’t suitable if you are very close to the nearest cellular tower.

Are you intending to build a configuration that does WiFi 6 + 4G/5G at the same time? It gets a bit tricky as a “full spec” configuration for each of those demands 4 antenna connectors.

I have been meaning to add an “application note” of what to buy and how to assemble for each type of configuration (WiFi only, 4G/5G only, WiFi+4G/5G) - might be able to get around to it next week.

Such application note would be great. My long term plan is to have Wifi 6 + 5G and any recommendations from someone having expertise in this subject is big life (and money) saver.

I ended up ordering the WLE3000H5 from Arrow (https://www.arrow.com/en/products/wle3000h5/compex-systems-pte-ltd) and Oumij 4G LTE Module for Fibocom Cat16 1Gbps L860-GL 4G LTE Module 4x4 256QAM LTE-A Wireless Card from Amazon (https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B07X5GKH6J).

I’ve yet to receive the WLE3000H5.

I also ordered a the “MA963 Guardian 4-in-1 5G/4G MIMO Wideband Adhesive Mount Antenna” but still waiting to receive that too.

The Fibocom card seems to appear okay in PCIe but seems to cause issues with one of the USB ports?

[26045.571885] usb 4-1-port2: Cannot enable. Maybe the USB cable is bad?
0000:01:00.0 Wireless controller [0d40]: Intel Corporation Device [8086:7560] (rev 01)
        Subsystem: Hewlett-Packard Company Device [103c:8507]
        Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 255         
        Memory at 2040000000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=4K]
        Memory at 2040001000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=256]
        Capabilities: [40] Power Management version 3
        Capabilities: [50] MSI: Enable- Count=1/4 Maskable- 64bit+
        Capabilities: [70] Express Endpoint, MSI 00
        Capabilities: [100] Advanced Error Reporting                                            
        Capabilities: [148] Latency Tolerance Reporting                  
        Capabilities: [150] L1 PM Substates                         
        Capabilities: [d00] Vendor Specific Information: ID=0024 Rev=1 Len=0a0 <?>

I’m unsure what type of antenna I should get to pair with the WLE3000H5? I assume I want some type of 4x4 MIMO antenna?

It would also be great if there was some information on the type of connectors / pigtails needed for the holes in the side of the Ten64 case.

Would something like Panorama CM4-24-58-2RPSP Low Profile 4x4 MiMo WiFi Antenna (more details @ CM[X]-24-58-2[VAR] | Low Profile MiMo WiFi Antenna) or PDQ24518-MI1: 4x4 MiMo WiFi Antenna for Mist Systems / Juniper Network – Arcadian - ArcAntenna.com be good options?

Looks like a driver from Intel for the 7560 card is queue for Linux next but missed 5.14? See kernel/git/netdev/net-next.git - Netdev Group's -next networking tree

Actually it looks like it did land in 5.14, but just isn’t compiled as a module in the linux-traverse-5.14.0-traverse-stable-5-14+47-00011-gf06fec81f73c kernel? (Probably because it is a new in 5.14 config option of CONFIG_IOSM?)

As best I can tell, this is because the L860 has a USB transmitter but isn’t driving it due to being in PCIe mode. The USB hub thinks a USB device is there and keeps trying to talk to it.

This will require a firmware update to disable the USB port attached to the M.2 slot when it sees this class of device. The Ten64 u-boot already does this when it sees a NVMe SSD in the Key B.

If you get tired of seeing it, here is a kernel patch that silences this particular log message.

I haven’t found a suitable one (at least that is easily obtainable) for indoor use. The “4x4 MIMO” ones out there tend to be for vehicles or for “hotspots on wheels”.

Will be covered in the aforementioned application note. In the meantime:

These are good ‘whip’ antennas that work on both WiFi bands:
Taoglas GW.51.5153

For MiniPCIe WiFi cards, you need RP-SMA to UFL bulkhead connectors, my suggestion would be to grab two short (~150mm) ones and two longer ones (~300mm) to be installed either side on the Ten64.
Example of a 150mm: CA-DKCA1-152L1-ALI0
300mm: CA-DKCA1-305L1-ALI0

For M.2 Cellular modems, you need SMA to MHF4, like CAB.S02
(Warning: due to how small the MHF4/card connector is, they can only be connected and removed several times before they break. It’s a good to have a couple of spares)

Also recommended:

  • 8mm spanner to tighten the SMA connectors to the enclosure
  • A suitable silicone adhesive to ‘glue’ down the antenna connectors onto the modem and WiFi cards (otherwise they could get dislodged during transport). Dow 744 is what we use. Not required for ‘lab’ use.

Yes, the entire ‘WWAN’ stack is new in 5.14, previously most cards used USB drivers and these cards sat out of the tree.
I’ll add it to the next kernel build for 5.14.

@mcbridematt - It also seems the ath11k driver is currently not enabled in the linux-traverse-5.14.0-traverse-stable-5-14+47-00011-gf06fec81f73c kernel either?

ath11k is very, very new (at least outside Qualcomm IPQ SoCs).

I’ve been running all my ath11k experiments under OpenWrt after I managed to “backport” it… the main reason being to take advantage of all the infrastructure for WiFi management in OpenWrt (e.g hostapd config generation)

Part of that kernel is here: Files · ath11k_5_10_20210909 · Mathew McBride / ath11k-qcn9074-backport · GitLab and I plan to post the full “11ax” OpenWrt tree soon.

I can turn it on for our >=5.14 kernels as well but I’ll stress there may be a lot of hoops to jump through still

Curiously, CONFIG_IOSM has a dependency on CONFIG_INTEL_IOMMU, effectively making it x86-64 only.
The driver compiles on arm64 with the INTEL_IOMMU dependency removed, who knows if it will work though.

Kernel 5.14.8 has been uploaded as 5.14.8-traverse-stable-5-14+52-00013-g703e0524bb7c, let me know how you go.

For the ath11k board, I needed to clone https://github.com/kvalo/ath11k-firmware and put the *.bin files from https://github.com/kvalo/ath11k-firmware/tree/master/QCN9074/hw1.0/testing/2.4.0.1.r1/WLAN.HK.2.4.0.1.r1-00019-QCAHKSWPL_SILICONZ-1 into /lib/firmware/ath11k/QCN9074/hw1.0/.

I initially tried the 2.5.0.1 files, but it complained about the lack of board-2.bin file.

I’m assuming this is mostly an issue around mismatching driver / firmware versions.

On the WWAN module, for some reason it has now decided to only appear as a USB device;

Bus 004 Device 003: ID 8087:095a Intel Corp. MODEM + 2 CDC-ACM + 3 CDC-NCM + SS
[  491.488089] cdc_acm 4-1.2:1.0: ttyACM0: USB ACM device
[  491.500631] cdc_acm 4-1.2:1.2: ttyACM1: USB ACM device
[  491.529085] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.6: MAC-Address: 00:00:11:12:13:14
[  491.534908] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.6: setting rx_max = 16384
[  491.540601] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.6 eth10: register 'cdc_ncm' at usb-xhci-hcd.1.auto-1.2, CDC NCM, 00:00:11:12:13:14
[  491.573074] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.8: MAC-Address: 00:00:11:12:13:16
[  491.578830] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.8: setting rx_max = 16384
[  491.584492] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.8 eth11: register 'cdc_ncm' at usb-xhci-hcd.1.auto-1.2, CDC NCM, 00:00:11:12:13:16
[  491.596171] cdc_acm 4-1.2:1.4: ttyACM2: USB ACM device
[  491.601407] usbcore: registered new interface driver cdc_acm
[  491.607080] cdc_acm: USB Abstract Control Model driver for USB modems and ISDN adapters
[  491.625151] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.10: MAC-Address: 00:00:11:12:13:18
[  491.631008] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.10: setting rx_max = 16384
[  491.636788] cdc_ncm 4-1.2:1.10 eth12: register 'cdc_ncm' at usb-xhci-hcd.1.auto-1.2, CDC NCM, 00:00:11:12:13:18

I assume there is a command I will have to send the board to get it to “mode switch” back to being a PCIe card (and thus have the IOSM drivers see it) but I haven’t had the time to figure out what that is yet. It is yet unclear to me what seems to cause the card to choose USB or PCIe at power on.

Just some info from dmesg about the ath11k_pci board;

[   11.699032] ath11k_pci 0001:03:00.0: Adding to iommu group 3
[   11.706661] ath11k_pci 0001:03:00.0: BAR 0: assigned [mem 0x2840000000-0x28401fffff 64bit]
[   11.719251] ath11k_pci 0001:03:00.0: qcn9074 hw1.0
[   12.079383] ath11k_pci 0001:03:00.0: chip_id 0x0 chip_family 0x0 board_id 0xff soc_id 0xffffffff
[   12.088773] ath11k_pci 0001:03:00.0: fw_version 0x24050013 fw_build_timestamp 2020-08-10 10:10 fw_build_id 

Wireless Assembly Guide has been added to the documentation.
This has a list of suggested antennas and cables and a couple of example setups for both cellular and WiFi use cases.

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This is a great document! Thanks for your hard work here.

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