Subject: Re: 100baseT ethernet card questions
To: None <>
From: Rafal Boni <>
List: current-users
Date: 12/07/1998 18:41:52
In message <>, you write: 

-> I had assumed it was a completely unrelated and dissimilar chip; is there
-> reason to suspect the tulip driver would make a reasonable basis for it?

It *is not* completely dis-similar -- I think it's just a bad Tulip clone.
The linux tulip.c driver does have support for this chip, so it would be
possible to crib from there.

My experience with these chips has been uniformly bad -- we bought a bunch
of Linksys 10/100 cards with the PNIC on them and almost without exception
threw them all out.... They were trouble under NT, they were trouble under
Linux, even when (especially when?) connected to Linksys' own hubs!

I don't know if that bad experience is a result of the PNIC chip, or if the
Linksys cards had crappy PHYs that I could blame this on (I can check to see
if I can ID it, I've got a whole set of Linksys cards marked with "this card
sucks, use at your own risk" stickers in a file cabinet somewhere).

-> Don't forget to write Netgear and tell them that, as a system integrator,
-> you cannot possibly recommend their cards, because it's impossible to tell
-> from the model number what hardware you're buying.  All they had to do was
-> make it a *new model*.

I strongly second that... Especially since the cards we bought to replace the
shitty PNIC-based Linksys cards where the NetGear FA-310TX's... Now I'm 
worried that the next batch of boxes we build with the (possible different)
NICs will have the same problems we were originally trying to avoid.

Even if the new Netgear cards work just peachy, I've now got one spec for 
the hardware in my box but may actually be getting two *different* sets of 
hardware as a result.  This is quite scary from a supportability perspective!
(I'm not an integrator nor a hardware vendor, rather selling a drop-shippable
 server where the value-add is the pre-installed/configured software... And
 these boxes are going to end up on customers' premises)


Rafal Boni