Guys, I'm struggling with which way is up here.
Got/already had the driver Slingshot pointed me at, so I installed it from instructions. The dongle woke up immediately as the AMD, strong and tireless. Survived Hibernate and a reboot, then went away. I blacklisted rtl8192cu, and it came back as Realtek 802:11n on Wlan1, which was the address showing for the AMD incarnation of the thing, when the Realtek was listing as Wlan0. That too survived a reboot, but I had to Connect it manually to the router. Then it too went. No sign of the router in Connect, and a long "little green circle" in the toolbar before it went red-no-connection.
This morning (my time) I booted it up again, and it paused at the bottom of the parade with some lines indicating Unable to resolve Wlan1, and a problem with line 27(?) of /etc/wlan/shared(?) and too many (somethings(drivers?)), sat here a moment too little for me to get notes, and booted to Desktop with no dongle. A reboot was missing those extra lines but still no wifi.
Conclusion: With ndiswrapper and rtl8192cu blacklisted and the rtl8188/rtl8192 driver installed, there is still something left over unspotted that is poisoning the install each time a new connection is achieved with a new driver. And I'm not smart enough to find it and am reliant on inspiration from you guys.
Is there a clue in this morning's boot parade? I've looked for an /etc/wlan/shared file, and not found one. Is there a file with such a wlan list we could look at? How do I wipe the slate completely clean as per Slingshot's advice? I don't accurately know what I'm blacklisting in order to get 'em all! It certainly appears as if the dongle is alive and willing but something is coming out of left field and corrupting the installed driver after the initial successes. Reading back shows several instances of this in the thread.
Thank you all for your input and patience so far too.