Networkmanager should do the job for you if you have the right module for your wireless adapter configured in your kernel. Way better than it was in the old days. Look at dmesg to see if the module came up correctly when it booted.
Here is mon problème: I’ve been lazy learning all these Linux things, so each operation is a chore it should not be. Perhaps this is what I will do, though, patiently, later tonight.
Better ask for help from the experts on your distro, I use an arcane one, so beyond that I’m not much use.
The experts don’t know — or at least not the people who speak in the fora. It is semi daunting and I keep hoping the next version will solve it, but generally the next version makes it worse. It’s the one bad thing about Linux, I’ve never had a Linux machine that could really handle wireless. The issue is that configuration in the kernel, yes!
Then the key is to find the missing module, get the kernel sources, set the necessary flags in .config, compile and install, and point your boot loader at the new kernel. It’s more effort than mowing the lawn, but less than a properly done 10-page undergraduate term paper. Most distros have instructions for this process, and tools to ease the pain. Valium is also good.