Subject: Re: setting ethernet interface hardware address?
To: Nick Amato <>
From: Kevin Lahey <>
List: tech-net
Date: 10/17/2001 10:47:44
In message <>Nick Amato writes
>It's also worth noting that allowing configuration of MAC address
>"aliases", where supported by the hardware, would be a nice feature.
>This makes implementing something like VRRP (RFC 2338) much easier.

It sure would be nice to have hardware that supported multiple MAC
addresses.  I wound up doing a really ugly set of hacks in software to 
get multiple MAC addresses for a high availability embedded system.

I remember that the reasonably modern (?) version of the Lance that
we were using (that was spec'ed long before I had anything to do with 
the project, not my fault) would allow multiple multicast addresses, but 
wouldn't allow multiple unicast addresses.  I thought that when I 
complained bitterly about that, my NetBSD pals laughed and suggested 
that most of the NICs were like that.

I agree, it'd be fun to have in there, although, IIRC, there were
some complexities in trying to do things like assign addresses to 
particular MAC addresses.  I wound up creating multiple virtual
interfaces to handle this, and that rapidly got ugly.