this is what some drawbacks with some Linux distributions. We need internet connection, to activate internet connection at the very first time.
Till now, I faced this with Ubuntu, Mint,SUSE, Fedora, and so on
But, SLACKWARE is outstanding and perfect. It don't need internet connection to activate internet connection.Hmm, am not sure about Arch in this matter.
Arch is another distro that relies on an internet based repo.
but to add a slight correction about slackware, if you are using an intel or atheros based adapter it should be detected by nearly all Linux-based distros, but for all Linux-based systems you have to download the broadcom firmware from the internet to get it to work.
This is not much different than windows support, except that the Linux drivers are not available on a disk with the device and most wireless cards are supported as soon as the Linux-based is installed.
I actually ran across some problems trying to get Debian to recognize the intel wifi card in one of my laptops, which slackware recognized and configured automatically.
In general I tell people that they should intentionally try to get a computer with an atheros based wifi card when they are shopping to reduce the stress.