3Com (R) Corporation 3C90x 10 Mbps and 10/100 Mbps PCI NIC Family Release Notes and Frequently Asked Questions ------------------------------------------------------------ The EtherCD version 5.4 CD supports 3Com 10 Mbps and 10/100 Mbps PCI bus-mastering network interface cards (NICs) with a common driver set. Key product features include: - Parallel Tasking II (R) architecture for high performance - Bus mastering for low CPU utilization and optimal overall system performance - Automatic selection of media type and link speed for 10/100 Mbps NICs - Full duplex enabled for switched 10/100 Mbps environments - Broad driver support, including NetWare, NDIS 2.01, NDIS 3.0, NDIS 4.0, NDIS 5.0, and others - SNMP manageability - Lifetime limited warranty Release Notes and Frequently Asked Questions ----------------------------------------------------------- This file contains release notes and answers to some frequently asked questions to help you obtain maximum performance from your 3Com NIC. This information is updated regularly on the 3Com World Wide Web site (www.3Com.com). Release Notes --------------------- >>>DynamicAccess LAN agent and Windows Millennium Edition (Me) DynamicAccess LAN agent software is not supported on PCs running Windows Me. If you tried installing DynanmicAccess LAN agent on a Windows Me PC, you may lose network connectivity. To resolve this, remove the DynamicAccess LAN agent software: 1. Open the Add/Remove Programs icon in the Windows Control Panel. 2. Select the DynamicAccess Software entry, and then click Remove. 3. Reboot the PC when prompted. >>> Installing ODI 32 LAN driver supporting multiple 3C905B or 3905C NICs If you are using the ODI 32 LAN driver in a system with more than one 3C905B or 3C905C NIC installed and you are using Novell server revision 5.1, you need to upgrade the Novell 5.1 server to either Service Pack 1 or Novell 5.1 International versions. If this upgrade is not done and you unload the ODI 32 LAN driver, the server will abend. >>> Warm booting with the DOS-based drivers running 3Com has found that some older systems do not reset the PCI Bus when the <CTRL>+<ALT>+<DEL> key combination (a "warm boot") is used to restart the PC. If the system does not reset the PCI Bus when a warm boot occurs, the 3Com NIC remains in a running state that can cause problems if there is any network activity before the driver is reloaded. This problem can be avoided by pressing the PC's reset button (if your PC has one) or by turning the PC completely off before restarting. >>> DOS diagnostics incompatibility with 3C905B NIC in Plug and Play PCI computers During testing, 3Com encountered incompatibilities with the 3C905B&C NIC family and the some PCs when loading the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostics program. This happens when the PnP OS option is enabled in the BIOS settings. When the computer is booted, configuration resources are not assigned to the NIC. 3Com recommends that you change the PnP OS setting to disabled, save that configuration, reboot the computer to DOS, then run the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostic program. >>> Network Test using a crossover cable The Network Test in the 3Com Diagnostics program for Windows verifies the NIC's ability to transmit and receive data while on the network. There are two ways to perform the test: --Connect two PCs to the same network (using a hub or switch). --Connect two PCs directly to each other using a crossover cable. Connecting Two PCs to the Same Network ----------------------------------------------- 1. Connect one PC (the echo server) and another PC (the echo client) together through a hub or a switch that generates a constant link beat. 2. Set each NICs' Media Type and Duplex settings to AutoSelect. 3. Run the test. Connecting Two PCs Using a Crossover Cable ----------------------------------------------- 1. Connect the two PCs together using a crossover cable. 2. Manually set the Media Type to 10 Mbps or 100 Mbps and the Duplex mode to full or half duplex. 3. Run the test. >>> Error: " Invalid PCI Interrupt Level, Probable Hardware Incompatibility while executing DOS diagnostics" 3Com has observed that some PCs may display the above error message when the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostics program is launched. To avoid this problem, the "Plug & Play O/S " option should be disabled in the system BIOS. Consult your PC's documentation for the proper steps to disable this option. >>> DOS Configuration and Diagnostics program unable to recognize 3C90x NICs in Windows NT 3.51, Windows NT 4.0, Windows 2000, and Windows XP. 3Com has observed that the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostics program does not recognize 3C90x NICs when running under a DOS window using Windows NT 3.51, Windows NT 4.0, or Windows 2000. To avoid this problem, boot your PC with a DOS-bootable diskette and then launch the program. >>> When running the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostics program on a NIC with an MBA boot ROM installed, the N-WAY Auto Select option sometimes disappears from the list. Re-run the diagnostics program without rebooting. This restores all available settings. This situation was observed intermittently on multiple machines but does not have any impact on the performance of the NIC. >>> When running the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostics program, the diagnostic tests take the NIC off-line and force the link to 10 Mbps Half Duplex. Running the Group1 test forces a link renegotiation and the correct speed is set. Link renegotiation can also be forced by disconnecting and reconnecting the cables. These change of states can be observed with the NIC link (LNK) LED and the switch port status. This scenario was observed only when the NIC was set to NWAY - Auto and connected to a LinkSwitch 3000 port that was also set to auto negotiate. This situation does not have any impact on the performance of the NIC. >>> Error when running the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostics program from a DOS window under Windows 98 To avoid possible errors, 3Com suggests booting from a DOS-bootable diskette when running the DOS diagnostics program. Alternatively, the DOS diagnostics program can be run by rebooting your PC in "Safe Mode - Command Prompt Only". >>> 3C90x-COMBO NICs require a reboot to reestablish network connectivity when switching between ports on the NIC When changing from one port to another on a 3C90x-COMBO NIC, you must reboot your PC to establish a network connection. This includes any change from AUI or BNC to TP, TP to BNC or AUI, and any changes between BNC and AUI. >>> Intermittent LED behavior on 3C905B NICs 3Com has observed that your PC must be power cycled after you have changed speed settings from 10 Mbps to 100 Mbps. The reboot allows the LEDs to indicate the correct speed settings. >>> Client 32 installations in Windows 98 3Com does not recommend using the ODI LAN driver for Client 32 installations under Windows 98. The Windows NDIS driver should be used instead. >>> Changing media type or duplex mode in the 3Com NIC Diagnostics program for Windows using the NDIS 3 driver in Windows 95 (Retail) When you change the media type or duplex mode using the 3Com NIC Diagnostics program for Windows, you must exit the diagnostics program and reboot the PC for the changes to take effect. >>> DynamicAccess control panel icon is disabled after removing the 3Com NIC Diagnostics program If you remove the 3Com NIC Diagnostics program on a PC running Windows 98 or Windows 95 (OSR2) with the DynamicAccess LAN agent installed, the DynamicAccess control panel icon will be disabled. Remove and reinstall the DynamicAccess LAN agent to fix the problem. >>> Installing the DynamicAccess LAN agent in a Windows 95 PC that does not have a NIC installed Do not install the DynamicAccess LAN agent on a PC that does not have a NIC installed. Doing so results in the following error message: "3Com Dynamic Access Software did not install successfully. From the start button run DAW95RMV.EXE..." Do not run the DAW95RMV.EXE program. See the DynamicAccess Software User Guide, located with the DynamicAccess LAN agent software on the EtherCD, for instructions on how to remove the DynamicAccess LAN agent. >>> Windows 95 and Windows 98 installation notes This information applies to Windows 95 and Windows 98 operating systems. When installing a 3Com NIC under Windows 95/98, the operating system automatically detects the presence of the NIC and asks for the diskette containing the driver software for the NIC (diskette 1). At this point, you can choose to cancel the installation of driver software and install it later. Even though the driver installation has been canceled, the fact that the NIC is installed is recorded in the System Registry. Later, when you install the driver software using the Network icon in the Windows Control Panel, the operating system assumes that you are installing another instance of a NIC, not installing software for the already recorded instance. This results in two instances of the NIC being recorded in the System Registry. The 3Com NIC does not operate correctly under these circumstances. To fix this problem, open the System icon in the Windows Control Panel. In the Device Manager, under Network adapters, the two instances of the 3Com NIC are shown. Remove the one that is marked as disabled, and restart your computer. The entry for the remaining NIC in the same dialog box should show that the NIC is operating correctly. >>> Windows NT 4.0 installation notes This information applies to Windows NT 4.0 operating systems. The oldest Windows NT 4.0 service pack that can be used with EtherCD 5.4 is Service Pack (SP) 4. Some components require even more recent service packs. Consult the help files for those components. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) ------------------------------------------------- NOTE: Specific FAQs for Remote Wake-Up are in the WAKEFAQ.TXT file located in the HELP directory on the EtherCD (or EtherDisk diskette 2). Q: How do I remove the software that comes with my 3Com NIC if I have a compatibility problem? A: You may remove the 3Com NIC Diagnostics program from your system at any time by running the uninstaller in the Windows Add/Remove Programs Control Panel. If you remove all of the 3Com NICs from the Control Panel, the uninstall program runs automatically. Q: Which PCI slot is best for my 3Com 10/100 PCI NIC? A: 3Com PCI NICs are designed to work in PCI slots that support bus-mastering data transfers. Refer to your PC manual for information on which slots support bus-mastering data transfers. Q: Which PCI slot(s) are "bus mastering" in my PCI machine? A: Generally, if you have three PCI slots in a machine, one slot is designated as a "slave-only" slot (that is, it does not support bus-mastering data transfers). Slots are not always marked clearlyto distinguish between slave-only and bus-mastering slots. Refer to your owner's manual or contact your computer manufacturer for this information. Also, make sure that you have the latest version of your system's BIOS. Q. Does my PCI NIC support shared interrupts? A. The drivers for the 3Com NICs support shared interrupts. However, because there is no industry-standard way to support shared interrupts, other NICs may support them differently, or not at all. If you have another PCI NIC that does not support shared interrupts (for example, a SCSI host adapter), either contact the manufacturer for a shared interrupt driver or try running the system setup program to assign it a different interrupt. 3Com has found that OS/2 version 1.3 does not support shared interrupts, but it is only a problem if you are using the OS/2 NDIS 2.01 driver in LAN Manager version 2.2. 3Com has also found some problems with sharing interrupts under Windows 95. More details are available in the "Release Notes" section earlier in this document. If this is a problem, try using the 3Com DOS Configuration and Diagnostic program to give each NIC a different IRQ, and change the BIOS on your system to match. Q: What interrupts should I avoid using with my 3Com NIC? A: You should avoid using any interrupts used by ISA/EISA boards that do not properly support shared interrupts (level-triggered). If you do not know or are unsure whether your devices supports shared interrupts, then avoid using them. In addition, try to avoid using the same interrupt as your local hard drive (normally IRQ 14 for IDE drives and IRQ 11 for most SCSI host controllers), because not all hard drives support shared interrupts at this time. For Novell NetWare servers, you should also avoid using IRQ 7 or 15. These IRQs only support nonshared devices and may cause problems if they are shared between two devices. Q: Are the 3Com ODI drivers Novell-certified? A: Yes, 3Com's ODI drivers are Novell tested and approved. Q: How do I update my 3C90x drivers in Windows? A: Obtain the latest drivers from the 3Com Web site (www.3com.com). You can update the drivers using the Update NIC Drivers option on the EtherCD. See the user guide (UsrGuide.PDF) for instructions. 3Com Technical Support ----------------------------------- Refer to the 3Com 10/100 PCI NICs user guide (UsrGuide.PDF) for technical support information. This information is also available in the \HELP\SUPPORT.TXT file on the EtherCD (or EtherDisk diskette 2). ----------------------------------------------------------- 3Com, EtherDisk, and DynamicAccess are registered trademarks of 3Com Corporation. (%VER README.TXT - Release Notes v 5.4.5)Download Driver Pack
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