[nSLUG] Re 8139 NIC

Jim Haliburton jim.haliburton at ns.sympatico.ca
Tue Mar 11 20:17:37 AST 2003

dlandry had written about his NIC problem.

rtl8139 is a Realtek chip set.  Also know as a Real Cheap chipset.  Some 
manufacturers are even cheaper and cut costs on the card so it does not 
have all the 'features' the chipset supports.

New ones are less than $12.00 CDN

However, it is important what slot you use on a PC.  You generally must 
not use the PCI slot next to the AGP slot.  So make sure the slot in use 
is one other than that one.  In the BIOS if you can explicitly set the IRQ 
for a given slot be sure to set it for IRQ 10 say and assign to the slot 
into which you are putting the card in question.

Be sure to tell the BIOS to reset or reassign the ESCD settings on start 
up.  To free up an IRQ disable the 2nd serial port if not needed and 
assign the 2nd NIC to IRQ3 if you are having two NICs. Set this slot/IRQ 
assignment in the BIOS as well.

You may have to remove all other cards except a video card and a NIC to 
get it detected correctly and then let other cards such as a sound card 
and a second NIC be found after the system is installed.  In other  words 
get the system up and loaded and then add the option cards on 2nd or 3rd 
boot.  RedHat Kudzu should find the add-ins.  

Also check if there is a motherboard BIOS update.  If not reflash the 
current version, if there is put it in.

Some cards such as the aon325 can have the card setting set by way of a 
DOS app.  I know the speed and duplex can be locked to fixed setting as 
opposed to auto sense.  This may need to be done with this card.  If on a 
cable modem set the card at 10 mbit half duplex.  Some can even have the 
IRQ set.  Set for IRQ10 as a start and see if it is seen during install.

Best I can do for suggestions.

Jim Haliburton

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