For those who need the internet access available whenever you need it, you should never skip the 4 best Linux wifi dongle devices we review in this post.
Are you a newbie to wifi dongle devices, or you have tried various of those but still not had any luck. Then, you might not have known these 4 best Linux wifi dongle USB wireless devices. They are supposed to be affordable, portable, and extremely reliable to provide internet access anywhere and anytime.
Don’t believe it? – Then, check the wifi adapters down below.
Best Linux Wifi Dongle – A Review
Last update on 2020-10-27 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Best Budget: TP-Link N150 Wireless Adapter SoftAP
If you only need to connect wifi to watch video streaming or make online calls, there is no need to get advanced and expensive USB usb dongles. An adapter with a speed of 150Mbs like the TP-Link N150 Wireless High Gain USB Adapter is far enough.
The first feature worth mentioning is its size. The TP-Link N150 comes in the form of a nano design. Indeed, this device is as small as your fingernails. This is a big plus as the USB will never be bulky or noticeable when connected to your smartphones, tablets, or laptops without the need of other connectors or converters.
Next, this wireless USB adapter is confirmed by the manufacturer to work well with Windows, Mac OS, and Kali Linux Kernel (2. 6. 18 – 4. 4. 3.) Thus, it will definitely meet your requirement for a Linux USB wifi dongle. You just take note that the Linux drivers are not available on the installation disk, meaning you should pre-install one in the TP-LINK’s page for driver downloads. The USB wifi adapter supports Linux operating system then.
Another thing to keep in mind is that the maximum throughput is only 150Mbs, which is not recommended if you want fast speed for online games.
- Half-priced compared to other wifi dongles
- Extremely compact for smartphones or tablets
- No additional connector or converter required
- Compatible with Linux Kernel and other operating systems
- Small so it might be lost easily
- No pre-installed Linux driver
- Slow transmission speed
All in all, this TP-Link N150 is a great deal for common requirements for Internet access, say video streaming or voice calls.
Best Versatile: Panda 300Mbps Wireless USB Adapter
Panda 300Mbps Wireless USB Adapter is more popularly known as the Panda PAU05 – one of the best versatile connection devices we have ever tested.
To be specific, the USB wifi device will work with almost all standard operating systems from the Raspberry Pi, Window, Mint Ubuntu, CentOS, Mac Os to Linux – just to name a few. For that reason, you can buy one Panda PAU05 to connect as many laptops versions and brands as you want.
Apart from that, the performance is also good since it can connect flawlessly with the 802.11g 2.4GHz wireless standards without the extra external wifi antenna as some other bulky wireless models. On the other side, the wifi connection speed is 300Mbps – twice as much as that of the TP-Link N150. As a result, you can stream videos with higher quality and speed.
However, the over-expected compatibility with so many operating systems makes the driver installation tricky and even errored.
- Compatible with Windows, Linux, and many others
- Medium-priced for a 2.4GHz wireless adapter
- Small and compact to carry around
- Not required to have an external antenna
- Complicated driver installation
- Still low-speed connection
Generally, the Panda PAU05 is preferred for its convenience to work with multiple operating systems while maintaining a balance in price and overall performance.
Best Powerful: Cudy WU1300 1300Mbps Compatible
In terms of performance, you will be happy to know about the Cudy WU1300 1300Mbps Wireless Compatible.
This unit looks no different from the standard USB because both are compact and convenient enough for mobile users. You can just plug it into a USB port and it is ready. And yes, the Cudy WU1300 works as a regular USB device to transmit and receive the data in seconds.
More importantly, it also works as a wireless adapter with the Soft-AP mode. Simply put, users can turn the connected device into a wifi hotspot that distributes Internet access – in a very speedy way, we might add. This is because the USB 3.0 port is 10 times quicker than the traditional 2.0 one. Thus, you can expect the wifi speed to be 867Mbps on 5GHz and 400Mbps on 2.4GHz. The maximum speed can be up to 1300Mbps.
About the compatibility with Linux, Cudy WU1300 supports it rather well. They even include a CD driver in the package so that you can download the Linux driver. However, some users confirm that the link and documentation are not as useful as expected, and you might need to reach out to the Linux community to help.
- Extremely speedy in data and transmission
- Soft-AP mode to turn on the wifi hotspot quickly
- Compact and convenient to use
- Available for multiple operating systems, including Linux
- A bit expensive
- Unhelpful driver documentation
Thanks to its speed, the Cudy WU1300 is suitable for those who need instant wifi connection at any time and anywhere to watch high-performance videos or even to play online games,
Best Stable: Adapter 1200Mbps ZTESY Adapter
The last on the list, Adapter 1200Mbps ZTESY is nearly as fast as the Cudy WU1300 in wifi speed.
For the 2.42GHz band, the connection is around 300Mbps, while it can be improved to 866Mbps at 5.8GHz or even the ultra-fast 1200Mbps with the dual band connectivity. The Soft-ap mode is also available to transfer the wired network in the Laptop or tablet into a very high-speed wifi hotspot.
Other than the speed, we want to emphasize the connection’s stability thanks to the antenna and the safe wifi signal function, no matter whether the wifi routers are WPA2, WPA, or WEP. Even better, the antenna is rotatable so that there is no-dead-angle in the connection transmission.
Good as it is, however, the antenna caused the Adapter 1200Mbps ZTESY to be less portable and bulkier when it is connected to any devices, especially the small ones.
- Stable and speedy wifi connection
- Supportive Soft-ap mode for instant hotspots setup
- Compatible with various operating systems
- Easy driver installation thanks to useful instruction
- Expensive wifi dongle
- Bulky antenna
The 1200Mbps ZTESY is expensive but worthy if you prefer using this wifi adapter for PC at home for a stable connection to having it available for internet access on the way.
Can you pick up a USB from the best Linux wifi dongle that we reviewed above? If not, then we strongly recommend the Cudy WU1300 because of its ultra-fast performance and medium-priced range!