|You are correct, however in case of both Raspian Desktop and Ubuntu MATE OS one is lead to believe that "raspi-config" does the (WiFi) activation. AS you pointed out - unfortunately one cannot activate something which is not properly or not at all installed in the first place.
I need to find a REAL controller hardware "computer". I am getting frustrated with these OS for toys which are good for flashing LED at best.
Of course when I say something to that effect I get kicked out from forum.