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How To Install RTL8188EUS Driver on Ubuntu 18.04

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In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the process of installing the RTL8188EUS driver on Ubuntu 18.04. This driver is required for some wireless network adapters, and installing it can be a bit tricky. However, with this step-by-step guide, you should be able to accomplish it with ease.

Quick Answer

To install the RTL8188EUS driver on Ubuntu 18.04, you need to update your system, install necessary packages, clone the driver repository from GitHub, build and install the driver, and then reboot your system.


Before we start, make sure you have the following:

  • Ubuntu 18.04 installed on your system.
  • Access to a terminal and basic familiarity with command line instructions.
  • The RTL8188EUS wireless network adapter connected to your system.

Step 1: Update Your System

First and foremost, we need to ensure your system is up-to-date. Open your terminal and run the following commands:

sudo apt update
sudo apt-get install -f
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade

sudo apt update updates the list of available packages and their versions, but it does not install or upgrade any packages.

sudo apt-get install -f fixes broken dependencies.

sudo apt-get dist-upgrade upgrades packages and will handle changing dependencies with new versions of packages.

Step 2: Install Necessary Packages

Next, we need to install some packages that are necessary for building the driver. Run the following command:

sudo apt-get -y install dkms build-essential git

dkms is a framework that allows kernel modules to be dynamically built and loaded.

build-essential contains a list of packages which are considered essential for building Ubuntu packages including gcc compiler, make and other required tools.

git is a version control system that lets you manage and keep track of your source code history.

Step 3: Clone the Driver Repository

Now that we have the necessary packages, we can proceed to download the driver source code. We will clone the driver repository from GitHub using git. First, create a directory to build the driver and navigate to it:

mkdir ~/DriverBuild
cd ~/DriverBuild

Then, clone the driver repository:

git clone

Step 4: Build and Install the Driver

Navigate to the cloned repository:

cd rtl8188eu

Then, build and install the driver using the following commands:

sudo make install

make command reads the makefile in the current directory and compiles the code.

sudo make install command installs the compiled code into the appropriate directories in the system.

Step 5: Reboot Your System

Finally, reboot your system to load the newly installed driver:



If you encounter the error “implicit declaration of function ‘init_timer’,” it may be due to compatibility issues with your kernel version. In that case, you can try alternative driver repositories mentioned in the comments.

For example, if you have kernel version 4.17, you can use the repository at

If you have kernel version 5.1 or below, you can try the repository at

Remember to follow the specific build and installation instructions provided in each repository.


Congratulations! You have successfully installed the RTL8188EUS driver on Ubuntu 18.04. Now your RTL8188EUS wireless network adapter should be functioning properly. Remember, it is recommended to use a USB 2.0 port for the RTL8188EUS adapter to ensure compatibility and optimal performance. If you face any issues, don’t hesitate to refer back to this guide or seek help from the Ubuntu community. Happy computing!

Can I install the RTL8188EUS driver on a different version of Ubuntu?

This guide is specifically written for Ubuntu 18.04. While it may work for other versions, it is recommended to refer to the documentation or community support for your specific Ubuntu version.

How do I check my kernel version?

You can check your kernel version by opening a terminal and running the command uname -r. This will display the kernel version installed on your system.

What should I do if I encounter an error during the installation process?

If you encounter an error, it is recommended to check the troubleshooting section of this guide. If the error persists, you can refer to the documentation or seek help from the Ubuntu community for further assistance.

Can I use a USB 3.0 port for the RTL8188EUS adapter?

While it is possible to use a USB 3.0 port, it is recommended to use a USB 2.0 port for optimal compatibility and performance.

How can I uninstall the RTL8188EUS driver?

To uninstall the driver, navigate to the directory where the driver source code is located (e.g., cd ~/DriverBuild/rtl8188eu) and run the command sudo make uninstall. This will remove the driver from your system.

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