Sub-$20 802.11n USB WiFi Adapter That's Linux Friendly

Written by Michael Larabel in Peripherals on 17 April 2015. Page 1 of 1. 35 Comments

As a quick Friday note, if you're looking for a 802.11n/g USB WiFi adapter that's very affordable and will work great with Linux, here's one of my recent purchases. After being pleased with one of them, I've since ordered a few more of these Wireless-N adapters for Linux usage.

The latest USB WiFi adapters I decided to buy was the Panda PAU06 300Mbps Wireless-N USB Adapter. This WiFi adapter can be found for $19.99 USD at Amazon where it has more than 500 reviews with a 4.5 star rating. Aside from the low-cost and good reviews, what led me to this model was that it also very clearly advertises Linux support.

The Panda wireless page mentions the "supported" Linux distributions: "Mint 14/15/16/17/17.1, Ubuntu 12.10/13.04/13.10/14.04/14.10, Fedora 18/19/20/21, openSUSE 12.2/12.3/13.1,CentOS 6.4/6.5/7, Lubuntu 12.10/13.04/13.10/14.04/14.10, Zorin 8.1/9.1, Kali Linux and Raspbian Wheezy." Basically, if you're running any modern Linux distribution, you should be fine for out-of-the-box support.

The actual product packaging also mentions Mint, Ubuntu, Fedora, and OpenSUSE as supported Linux distributions. While most WiFi adapters work fine under Linux these days without many headaches, it's nice to see Panda Wireless listing Linux support on their products. The device uses a Ralink RT5372 chipset (0x148f device ID / 0x5372 product ID).

Indeed, this Panda PAU06 wireless adapter worked fine under Linux. When plugging it into some Ubuntu 14.10/15.04 and Fedora 21 boxes around here, the device was working fine with my 802.11g and 802.11n routers around the office with various levels of security. The 5dBi antenna led to a great range and better than some of the other WiFi USB adapters I've used that have the antenna built into the housing. The actual performance of the device has been fine for my basic wireless needs on these particular systems.

Long story short, as a Linux-friendly, low-cost USB 802.11n WiFi adapter I'm happy with this Panda 300MBps Wireless-N USB adapter that sells for less than $20 and have since ordered more.

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Michael Larabel

Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via