-- DanRasmussen 2012-03-21 14:23:24 This page may serve as a reminder of how much of a hassle everything used to be, and how good we've got it these days! Don't know who wrote it...

NE2000 ISA clone FAQ

Dealing with ISA Plug n Play cards and your sanity. In the beginning ....

Plug and Play (PNP)

After the jumper, but before PCI there was PNP. When it was new it was a disaster. It hasn't gotten much better. It was just another weak attempt to emulate the simplicity of MAC hardware.

ISA cards have two modes, Jumpered and Jumperless.

There were also EISA cards but they were an ugly solution for an ugly problem, hopefully you won't run into one.


The ISA Board config problem.

Ethernet chips come from a small number of manufacturers. Those FABS sell or license the chips to other companies. The NE2000 was originally made for Novell Ethernet, (NE). The 2000 was used most likely because it was so "futuristic". The NE2000 spec became one of the most used network specs.

The ISA Ethernet board comes in a number of manufacturers chips. Most smaller manufacturers buy chips from a large chip house and rebrand them as their own. If you look at the small number of ethernet drivers that Linux distributions come with, you will notice there are not many drivers as there are ethernet cards. These many drivers cover many different network chips. Here is a list of the most commonly found NE200 chips.

Common NE2000 Chips

Chip

Linux Driver

* Realtek 8019

ne

* Realtek 8029

ne

* Anthem/Novell NE2000

ne2

* SMC EZ

ne

* DAVICOM DM9008F

ne

* WINBOND W89C904AXF

ne

* WINBOND W89C904F

ne

* WINBOND W89C905F

ne

* WINBOND W89C906F

ne

* WINBOND W89C906F

ne

* UMC UM9003AF

ne

* UMC UM9007

ne

* UMC UM9008

ne

* AT/LANTIC (Allied Tellisys)

ne2k

Tips

"Don't use addresses 0x300 or 0x320 for NE2000 type cards." [Ethernet Howto] Most ISA modules accept parameters like io=0x340 and irq=12 on the insmod command line. It is REQUIRED or at least STRONGLY ADVISED that you supply these parameters to avoid probing for the card. Unlike PCI and EISA devices, there is no real safe way to do auto-probing for most ISA devices, and so it should be avoided when using drivers as modules. [Ethernet Howto]


Probem: ISA Plug and Play NE2000 (such as RealTek 8019) is not detected. Reason: The original NE2000 specification (and hence the linux NE2000 driver) does not have support for Plug and Play.

Solution: Use the DOS configuration disk that came with the card to disable PnP, and to set the card to a specified I/O address and IRQ. Add a line to /etc/conf.modules like options ne io=0xNNN where 0xNNN is the hex I/O address you set the card to. (This assumes you are using a modular driver; if not then use an ether=0,0xNNN,eth0 argument at boot). You may also have to enter the BIOS/CMOS setup and mark the IRQ as Legacy-ISA instead of PnP


There are two major pieces of information needed for configuring the ISA PnP card.

'IRQ'

'function'

0

System timer

1

Keyboard

2

Programmable IRQ

3

Comm port

4

Comm port

5

sound card

6

floppy Controller

7

Printer Port

8

CMOS Real Time Clock

9

PNP

10

PNP your name here

11

PNP Video

12

PS/2 Mouse

13

Math Co-Processor

14

hard disk

15

hard disk

Interrupts 3 and 4 are for serial ports. Five is for a second printer port or a sound card. IRQ 6 is used for the Floppy drive controller. IRQ 7 is sometimes used for sound cards but most often used for the first parallel, (printer) port. IRQ 8 is for the Real Time Clock, Don't mess with this one.

IRQ 9 is a mutant interrupt, unlike any other. IRQ 9 IS IRQ 2 in disguise. I don't think there is a network card alive today that will allow you to use IRQ2, but 9 is OK almost always. Now we come to my favorite of all interrupts. Number TEN. My favorite ethernet IRQ. UMMMM TEN it makes me warm all over. Like Pizza.

---

Things you should have learned in school, (had you been paying attention).

Your ISA eternet card may have up to THREE different connectors.


Credits and links:

http://www.plasma-online.de/english/identify/serial/pnp_id_pnp.html

The ISA PNP FAQ http://www.roestock.demon.co.uk/isapnptools/

NE2000 Clone Configuration programs http://www.corbina.ru/~gasya/homelan/drivers/ne2000.htm

Linux Ethercard Status, Diagnostic and Setup Utilities http://www.scyld.com/diag/index.html


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