I turned off my dell wireless card and couldn't turn it back on

Submit to reddit

Among others I work on a Dell Vostro A860 Laptop. It’s running Slackware 64 Current. Yesterday I wanted to watch a movie while waiting at the airport for my wife so I turned off Wi-Fi using FN+11 (pressed a few times until both Bluetooth and wi-fi were disabled).

Today when I booted wi-fi was not working. I kept pressing FN+11 (as the laptop toggles trough combination of bluetooth off/on, wi-fi off/on, and any other possible combination). I used rfkill list all to check their status. I got to the point when both radios were reporting Hard blocked : no but Soft Blocked for wi-fi was still on. I tried restarting Network Monitor, removing the Atheros kernel module and everything else that came to mind. Than I remembered that documentation could be something useful. So I found that I need to run:

rfkill unblock wifi

Easy enough, wi-fi connected properly again.