Librem 15v3 unable to see Channel 13 WiFi

I recently tried connecting to a WiFi router with my laptop to which I was connected with my phone, however, my Librem could not detect the wifi SSID.

The router was configured on Ch 13 (there are 1 to 13 channels available on this router).

I change the Channel to 12 and the WiFi now appears in my Librem network list.

Is this something that can be configured in the librem network settings?

In Japan, some routers have an additional channel 14, would this be an issue with the Librem too?

This might be the limitation of WiFi chip. The US regulations used to not permit channels 11-14 for normal use. Canada allows only 12 channels for normal use. Maybe the smallest common subset is enabled in the hardware by default. Just a hint.


Maybe you can change your WiFi country:

To check your actual country:
sudo iw reg get

To change it:
sudo ifconfig wlp2s0 down
sudo iw reg set XX
sudo ifconfig wlp2s0 up

Were is write XX set another country code like JP, but you must be careful because maybe your country regulations does not allow to use this frequency.

Country code list


thanks @uzanto, I just learnt of a new command, iw, very interesting. In fact I found a blog by a linux jet-setter who set up a button on his desktop to automatically configure his wireless locale depending on the country he visits.

Setting my locale to IN (india), I get

# iw reg get
country IN: DFS-JP
	(2402 - 2482 @ 40), (N/A, 20), (N/A)
	(5170 - 5250 @ 80), (N/A, 20), (N/A), AUTO-BW
	(5250 - 5330 @ 80), (N/A, 20), (0 ms), DFS, AUTO-BW
	(5735 - 5835 @ 80), (N/A, 20), (N/A)

which now lists the 2.4 GHz bands from 2.402 to 2.482 which includes ch 13 but excludes ch 14 at 2.484.
However, in both cases (before and after changing my locale), the 2,4 GHz band reports channel 13 & 14 as disabled,

# iw list
Band 1:
			* 2412 MHz [1] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2417 MHz [2] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2422 MHz [3] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2427 MHz [4] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2432 MHz [5] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2437 MHz [6] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2442 MHz [7] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2447 MHz [8] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2452 MHz [9] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2457 MHz [10] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2462 MHz [11] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2467 MHz [12] (16.0 dBm)
			* 2472 MHz [13] (disabled)
			* 2484 MHz [14] (disabled)

However the fact that these channels are actually listed, would make me think that they are disabled at the kernel level rather than a HW block as suggested by @Dwaff.

Your thoughts?
Apparently some people are able to enable these channels using iw reg set JP.

Here is a thread on Ubuntu forums which would appear to point to a driver setting.

According to this depends on hardware/firmware:

Changing regulatory domains

Helping compliance by allowing to change regulatory domains

Linux allows changing regulatory domains in compliance with regulatory restrictions world wide, including the US FCC. In order to achieve this devices always respect their programmed regulatory domain and a country code selection will only enhance regulatory restrictions. This is in accordance with the FCC part 15 country code selection knowledge base publication number 594280. As an example if your device was programmed for operation in the US which allows operation on channels 1-11 on the 2.4 GHz band and you visit Japan which allows operation on channels 1-14 and you change your regulatory domain to JP you will not be able to use channel 12, 13 or 14 (CCK). But if you have a device programmed for operation in Japan and visit the US and you select US as your regulatory domain you will have channel 12-14 disabled.

So it looks like iw reg command can’t enable additional channels, it can only disable some of them. If it does not work for you, next step would be to look for kernel module parameters to override device’s factory-programmed regulatory domain.

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Thanks @Dwaff. I 'll ping purism on this to get some hints as to where I should look.

Currently this is not too big an issue for me, but I can imagine it could be troublesome if I have to work on a wifi network which is broadcasting on ch 13 (permitted in India) or possibly ch 14 when I travel to Japan … my wife is Japanese… so this could be reality in the future.