Getting this module working is not very much fun if you are on a single boot system with Backtrack or Ubuntu installed however it is much easier if you are on a dual boot system that happens to also boot into Windows XP. I personally ran into the issue of the Dell Wireless 350 Bluetooth Module working with Backtrack on a development laptop that luckily didn’t have much data on it because to resolve the problem you need to install Windows XP, run a executable within XP from Dell to upgrade the firmware on the Dell Bluetooth 350 Module, and then reinstall Backtrack. Below is more information about how to get the Dell 350 Bluetooth Module working in Ubuntu or Backtrack Linux.

Dell 350 Bluetooth Module Issues Noticed During Bluetooth Configuration On Backtrack:

I first noticed the issue because of the two example commands below that were immediately returning blank results. Typically if there are no Bluetooth devices in range the hidd –search command or the hcitool scan command will at least take awhile to scan for Bluetooth devices.

root@bt:~# hidd --search
Searching ...
root@bt:~# hcitool scan
Device is not available: No such device

Anyhow after noticing that something wasn’t right I started looking further into the problem and noticed that dmesg also did not show the Dell 350 Bluetooth Module. The resolution is lengthy however not so bad if you are in a development environment like I was. If the laptop I had the issue with was my daily driver I believe I would have simply bought a new Bluetooth module instead of following the below steps.

Solve Dell Wireless 350 Bluetooth Module Issue On Backtrack Or Ubuntu:

As I read in the Dell forums it appears the issue relates to firmware installed during the upgrade of drivers received from Dell which will not work with Ubuntu Linux or Backtrack Linux. By installing a different driver from Dell you should be able to use the Dell Wireless 350 Bluetooth Module within Backtrack and Ubuntu.

  1. Install Windows XP: I know this sounds crazy but it has to be done to install the proper driver from Dell that will flash the firmware on the Dell 350 Bluetooth Module. You can do this by adding a partition to Backtrack or to Ubuntu however that will just add extra steps. Again it depends on how bad you want Bluetooth to work with this particular module. So if you are proceeding get Windows XP installed that you can boot into on the hard drive. I attempted to install the driver using a mini XP version but that didn’t work so installing to the hard drive appears to be the only solution.
  2. Update Dell 350 Bluetooth Module Firmware: Once XP is installed download this file which include the firmware upgrade application from Dell titled R117967.EXE. Once downloaded double click on the R117967.EXE file from within Windows XP to launch the firmware update which look like the below example image.

    Dell Wireless 350 Bluetooth Module Firmware Upgrade A17

    As you can see above the updater will flash the firmware on the Dell 350 Bluetooth Module to A17. Simply follow the prompts to flash the firmware. During the flashing process mine provided an error which I wasn’t able to capture but I simply OK’d and moved on. The process completed but I wasn’t sure at the time if it had worked.

  3. Boot Or Reinstall Backtrack Linux Or Ubuntu: Now boot up your Linux distribution such as Backtrack Linux or Ubuntu. If you made multiple partitions to complete this task it will be much easier and you won’t be required to reinstall Linux.
  4. Verify Bluetooth Module Recognized: Now use the two below commands to verify that the Dell 350 Bluetooth Module is seen by the operating system.
    root@bt:/etc/bluetooth# hcitool dev
            hci0    00:1E:37:BB:22:22
    root@bt:/etc/bluetooth# lsusb | grep -i bluetooth
    Bus 002 Device 004: ID 413c:8103 Dell Computer Corp. Wireless 350 Bluetooth

    As seen above the operating system now sees the Bluetooth Module even though the firmware update complained of failing.

Also the “hidd –search” and “hcitool scan” comands should now either return an output or take much longer to fail because they are actually scanning.

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