watchdog timeout (missed Tx interrupts) on 7-BETA2(i386)

Daniel Bye freebsd-questions at
Mon Nov 12 13:01:33 PST 2007

Hi all,

$ uname -a
FreeBSD 7.0-BETA2 FreeBSD 7.0-BETA2 #0: Sun Nov 11 00:34:39 GMT 2007     root at  i386

nfe0: <NVIDIA nForce4 CK804 MCP9 Networking Adapter> port 0xe400-0xe407 mem 0xf0105000-0xf0105fff irq 10 at device 10.0 on pci0

I'm seeing a lot of these:

nfe0: watchdog timeout (missed Tx interrupts) -- recovering

when the system is under heavy network load (my ports distfiles are NFS
mounted from another box, so trying to extract, e.g., the OpenOffice
source, is enough to cripple the box). When the demand for network
resources has calmed down again, it usually comes back up without any
further intervention.

My kernel is simply a pared-down version of GENERIC (that is, I have only
removed drivers that I don't need, and have added nothing to it). 

The same device worked adequately under 6.2-RELEASE with the nve
driver. It is only since moving to 7-BETA2 and its default nfe driver
that the problem has manifested.

Google shows that other people have had similar problems with the nfe
driver, but under 6.2-RELEASE on i386 and amd64, and no real solutions
are offered up in the archives (none that I found, anyway).

I saw a couple of suggestions that it might be down to the device sharing
and interrupt channel, but that's not the case here:

vmstat -i
interrupt                          total       rate
irq0: clk                        2709144       1000
irq1: atkbd0                       10079          3
irq5: nvidia0+                    192988         71
irq6: fdc0                            11          0
irq8: rtc                         346692        128
irq10: nfe0+                        3300          1
irq11: pcm0 ohci0+                 93174         34
irq15: ata1                           22          0
Total                            3355410       1239

If they're of any use or interest:

dmesg          -
pciconf -vl    -
kernel config  -
sysctl -a      -

I would appreciate any insights or hints as to what I might do to 
fix this.

Many thanks for your time,


Daniel Bye
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