slow bfe0, dropouts - solved

Ted Faber faber at ISI.EDU
Fri Jan 20 14:05:09 PST 2006

On Fri, Jan 20, 2006 at 09:36:33AM -0800, Ted Faber wrote:
> Hi.
> I'm running a Dell Inspiron 6000 with at Broadcom BCM4401-B0 Fast
> Ethernet on it, and the "Fast" really isn't there.  I'm frequently getting
> KB/s performance out of it on a 100 Mb/s link when trying to download,
> and it's fairly common for it to drop out completely over the course of
> a long download.  It has the feel of missing interrupts, but I don't see
> any messages in the logs.

I've fixed this, and I'm going to summarize to the list so it goes into
the archives so it's there for the next fellow.

As several people suggested to me off-list, the problem was a duplex
setting mismatch between the bfe0 card (the Broadcom BCM4401) and a
linksys hub.  Apparently a good way to spot this is to see high
incidence of output errors and collisions during a transfer, which I
certainly was able to see.

The problem was that the linksys detected the card as half duplex even
when the card was ifconfiged to be full duplex.  There is no way to
configure teh card to be half-duplex.  There's no obvious way to tell
the linksys box not to try to figure out the settings of the interface.

I wound up finding a hub from a different manufacturer (Netgear) that
worked correctly with the card and my problems seem fixed.

Thanks to everyone who helped out off-list.

Ted Faber           PGP:
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