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The Wifi on my 2012 MBA is busted, and a lab wants $400 to repair the logic board. Could I just buy a USB Wifi dongle, disable the builtin Wifi and set it up via the dongle?

If yes, any recommended brands that are known to work with OS X? This product seems to have good reviews and boasts OS X compatibility - can it work for me?

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I don't think it is that easy: isn't a working Wifi Airport Card a prerequisite for connecting/authenticating with the App Store?

On my MB Air 2,1 (mid 2009) the wifi is broken. Connecting with the internet is possible via an Apple USB-Ethernet-adapter but when trying to install an App/update OSx El Capitan the message in App Store is:

Your device or computer could not be verified.

I've googled a bit and as far as I can tell the options for this 5 year old machine are either to have the wifi repaired (€125) or buy a USB wifi dongle (€22) and accept that OSx will not be able to update.

E.g. this post:

A NIC (network interface card) is needed for authentication purposes to make sure the computer is what it claims to be.

on forums.macrumors.com reads like a sound argument.

On Hackintosh this seems to be fixed with various work arounds - but that's too much tinkering for me.

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It all depends on:

How fast should it be (150, 300 Mbs) ect.

Next it depends on WiFi signal strength you have.

Since you wont be using the build in WiFi antenna make sure the USB has good signal reception capability.

In principle, as a guide, the smaller the USB the lower the signal reception (not much space for antenna).

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