A couple of weeks back, my wireless card on my laptop first started dropping more than half the packets and then stopped working. Since the laptop is 4 years old, I was not too keen to spend to replace the wireless card (if stock was available). I had a DWL-G132, D-Link Wireless G USB adapter lying around from my old desktop and this was my best bet. In fact, I was so confident that it would work out of the box in Linux but I was disappointed. After a few searches, I realized that I could make the adapter work using ndiswrapper. Luckily, within a few minutes the wireless adapter was up and running.
Here's the process to make your adapter work on Linux:
Install ndiswrapper. I used the yum package from the rpmfusion repository. You may use apt-get on Ubuntu.
Download the drivers from the D-Link site for Windows.
Let's remove the ndiswrapper from the kernel from the time being using:
# modprobe -r ndiswrapper
In the zip file downloaded from the D-Link site (under the Drivers/2KXP folder):
# ndiswrapper -i netA5AGU.inf # ndiswrapper -i ar5523.bin
Load the ndiswrapper module back into the kernel:
# modprobe ndiswrapper
You should start seeing the LEDs on the adapter blinking (if not, repeat the process). You should observe a new wireless device on your NetworkManager and you can associate Wifi networks and get connected to the internet.