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SubjectRe: EtherExpress 16 Errors

Brian May wrote:

> I am getting the following errors, from a 486 computer
> with ISA EtherExpress 16:
> Sep 14 15:50:57 share kernel: eth0: transmit aborted, too many collisions

That one probably should be a KERN_DEBUG and not KERN_INFO (or simply
not reported unless #define DEBUG or similar in the driver).

> Sep 14 15:51:31 share kernel: eth0: tx interrupt but no status

That one doesn't have a KERN_XXX at all but according to the comments
the card commonly interrupts twice for one event.

> ifconfig reports only 39 errors for 14 days, which seems small
> compared with the number of messages I get in /var/log/kern.log

The info from "cat /proc/net/dev" is more informative. Also note
that no error counters are incremented for the "no status" message.

> Any ideas?

These cards have been problematic since the introduction of a
linux driver (hence the experimental status). Quite a few people
have had a go at hacking the driver but the consensus is that the
i82586 databook isn't detailed enough to allow a reliable driver
to be coded that handles all the quirks.

In short if you have a $2 ISA ne2000 card kicking about it will
probably provide more reliable operation. If not then try setting
your ISA bus to conservative settings (8MHz, default wait states
etc.) Some people have reported the complete hack of s/outb/outb_p/
on the whole driver to have helped against lock-up problems, FWIW.


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