This machine is dual-boot pclos 2010.1 and windows xp. Windows Xp was there first using the TP-LINK wifi usb stick.
It worked fine across cold reboot, with open networks and my WPA/PSK-TKIP secured network. Now it doesn't, more about that later.
There's not linux driver for this piece of s**t wifi hardware, so you have to use ndiswrapper. It works fine the first time, using pcc, selecting ndiswrapper, pointing it at the winxp driver on the product cd. Both open and secured networks work.
After you power down the machine, the usb stick stays powered (it has a blinking red led) and upon power it is detected and loaded as some random device by usbcore. By the time ndiswrapper gets to load the windows driver it's too late, and the ndis initialization fails.
If I unplug the wifi usb stick after the machine has been powered down and replug it (machine still off) it stays unpowered, starts up when the ndis drivers look for it and work fine.
Also, it work fine across warm reboots.
So I'm looking for a way to prevent it from being recognized early on during boot even when it is powered up.
Now the Windows XP problem. As I mentioned before it use to work fine. Now if I start the machine while the device is still on from before the last power off, it also won't work. In this case I can unplug, replug it and Windows picks up (where with pclos it doesn't)
However, with WindowsXP it will absolutely won't connect to secure networks, only to open ones. As I mentioned above, it worked fine with secure network before.
Last note: the latest driver on the manufacturer website is buggy, it's from 2005. They have shipped an updated driver with windows update in 2008 but never bothered to update their website.