Mace and Bmac ethernet drivers [was: Occasional crash reports]

Mike Fedyk mfedyk at
Sun Aug 19 05:17:19 EST 2001

On Sat, Aug 18, 2001 at 12:16:58PM +0100, Iain Sandoe wrote:
> On Sat, Aug 18, 2001, Robert E Brose II wrote:
> > On Mon, Aug 13, 2001 at 09:59:05PM -0500, Takashi Oe wrote:
> >> I don't really know, but I can confirm that both 2.2.x and 2.4.x kernels
> >> are unstable on a beige g3 and a bmac equipped b/w g3.  I can crash them
> >> rather easily with regular programs, given a day or two.  I have not seen
> >> similar instability on other machines (dual g4, 7600, all nubus).
> >> Unfortunately, I don't have any time to track it down right now  :(
> >
> > I've been able to trace that to the mace and bmac ethernet drivers, which
> > are *very* unreliable in 2.2.  Get the latest drivers from Donald Becker for
> > tulip, rtl8139, eepro100, etc. and you're set.  I haven't tried 2.4 yet.
> apropos bmac - is there a dbdma problem?
> I think Takashi did a dbdma fix ... did that go in?
> > -- end of forwarded message --
> >
> > Mace is still unreliable in 2.4. It's always been just plain unreliable
> > for me on 7200, 7500 and 7600's.
>  - are these clones or Apple originals?
> we found other dbdma problems on clone 7x00 machines for PowerComputing (in
> the sound side) ...

They were all origional Apple products.  7200, 6500 (which has no built in
ethernet), and beige g3 (oldworld).

> might be worth checking that there are no cases of "DEAD" status coming up
> on the Mace driver...
> as I say, booting with the BootX *init* (rather than the application) bmac,
> at least, seems reliable on g3/beige (don't use Mace much).

What's your best uptime for the g3?  I have one setup as a ipsec
gateway/firewall, and it didn't last over 28 days.  Add a tulip card (it
already had one for firewall, now has two...) and I now have 70 days uptime.

Also note: Mace has only worked over two days for me in about 20% of my
7200s (I have about 15) and in the case where it was able to reach 14 days
uptime, I was seeing kernel memory corruption, but no oops or crashes, just
owkward behavior.  Same solution, add another ethernet (this one has
eepro100, and tulip) and it now has 90 days uptime.

If anyone wants to try to fix the mace driver, I'd be happy to test any
patches available.


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