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Manual installation

As mentioned in our product page on Amazon and in our supported distributions page, we can only support Debian based distributions at this time. Nevertheless, more advanced users might be able to install the driver by manually compiling from source, without using a package manager. The following instructions were successfully tested in some non-Debian based distributions, namely openSUSE Leap 15.1, Fedora 30, CentOS 8, Arch Linux 2020.03.01 and Manjaro 19.0.2.

📝 Note that we accept remarks/contributions about this page, but we’re unable to provide support for it; if the instructions weren’t successful for you, please return our adapter for a refund.


The following packages should be installed before compiling the driver:

  • bc: the GNU bc calculator is needed by the Makefile
  • kernel headers: they are needed for compiling kernel modules. They should provide this directory: ls /lib/modules/$(uname -r)/build.
  • gcc, make etc: needed to compile the driver
  • dkms: allows the driver to be automatically recompiled on kernel updates

The command to install these packages depends on your distribution. Here are some examples:

# openSUSE:
sudo zypper install bc kernel-devel dkms
# Fedora:
sudo dnf install bc kernel-devel dkms
# Arch/Manjaro; in Manjaro, select the current kernel, not the old linux316:
sudo pacman -Sy bc linux-headers dkms

Getting the source and compiling

From our driver page, retrieve the .deb package that matches your adapter and uncompress it to get the source. Here’s an example for AC1L V2 and AC3L V2:

# Create a temporary folder
cd $(mktemp -d)
# Get the .deb
# Uncompress the .deb
ar x rtl88x2bu-dkms.deb
tar xf data.tar.xz .
# Move the source code to /usr/src/rtl88*
sudo mv usr/src/rtl88* /usr/src/
# Go to the driver source code directory
cd /usr/src/rtl88*

For distributions that do not have dkms, the following commands need to be run manually after each kernel update:

sudo make install

If you did install dkms, run the following instructions instead:

# We're in the /usr/src/rtl88* directory
sudo dkms add .
# See that dkms lists the driver name and version
dkms status
# Use the correct name/version in this command
sudo dkms install rtl88x2bu/

Additional instructions

Some distributions need extra instructions; we list them here.


openSUSE backports kernel patches which confuse the Makefile. If compilation fails, try the following sed command, then recompile:

# After all the installation instructions up to `cd /usr/src/rtl88*`
sudo sed 's/4, 19, 0/4, 12, 0/' -i os_dep/linux/os_intfs.c


CentOS needs an extra repository for dkms installation. Additionally, if compilation fails, try the following sed commands, then recompile:

sudo rpm -ivh epel-release-latest-8.noarch.rpm
# After all the installation instructions up to `cd /usr/src/rtl88*`
sudo sed 's/4, 19, 0/4, 12, 0/' -i os_dep/linux/os_intfs.c
sudo sed 's/5, 0, 0/4, 12, 0/' -i os_dep/linux/rtw_android.c