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-
- Instructions for use of the 3C90X driver for EtherBoot
-
- Original 3C905B support by:
- Greg Beeley (Greg.Beeley@LightSys.org),
- LightSys Technology Services, Inc.
- February 11, 1999
-
- Updates for 3C90X family by:
- Steve Smith (steve.smith@juno.com)
- October 1, 1999
-
- Minor documentation updates by
- Greg Beeley (Greg.Beeley@LightSys.org)
- March 29, 2000
-
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
-
-I OVERVIEW
-
- The 3c90X series ethernet cards are a group of high-performance busmaster
- DMA cards from 3Com. This particular driver supports both the 3c90x and
- the 3c90xB revision cards. 3C90xC family support has been tested to some
- degree but not extensively.
-
- Here's the licensing information:
-
- This program Copyright (C) 1999 LightSys Technology Services, Inc.
- Portions Copyright (C) 1999 Steve Smith.
-
- This program may be re-distributed in source or binary form, modified,
- sold, or copied for any purpose, provided that the above copyright message
- and this text are included with all source copies or derivative works, and
- provided that the above copyright message and this text are included in the
- documentation of any binary-only distributions. This program is
- distributed WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY, without even the warranty of FITNESS FOR
- A PARTICULAR PURPOSE or MERCHANTABILITY. Please read the associated
- documentation "3c90x.txt" before compiling and using this driver.
-
-
-II FLASH PROMS
-
- The 3c90xB cards, according to the 3Com documentation, only accept the
- following flash memory chips:
-
- Atmel AT29C512 (64 kilobyte)
- Atmel AT29C010 (128 kilobyte)
-
- The 3c90x cards, according to the 3Com documentation, accept the
- following flash memory chips capacities:
-
- 64 kb (8 kB)
- 128 kb (16 kB)
- 256 kb (32 kB) and
- 512 kb (64 kB)
-
- Atmel AT29C512 (64 kilobyte) chips are specifically listed for both
- adapters, but flashing on the 3c905b cards would only be supported
- through the Atmel parts. Any device, of the supported size, should
- be supported when programmed by a dedicated PROM programmer (e.g.
- not the card).
-
- To use this driver in such a PROM, visit Atmel's web site and download
- their .PDF file containing a list of their distributors. Contact the
- distributors for pricing information. The prices are quite reasonable
- (about $3 US each for the 64 kB part), and are comparable to what one would
- expect for similarly sized standard EPROMs. And, the flash chips are much
- easier to work with, as they don't need to be UV-erased to be reprogrammed.
- The 3C905B card actually provides a method to program the flash memory
- while it is resident on board the card itself; if someone would like to
- write a small DOS program to do the programming, I can provide the
- information about the registers and so forth.
-
- A utility program, 3c90xutil, is provided with Etherboot in the 'contrib'
- directory that allows for the on-board flashing of the ROM while Linux
- is running. The program has been successfully used under Linux, but I
- have heard problem reports of its use under FreeBSD. Anyone willing to
- make it work under FreeBSD is more than welcome to do so!
-
- You also have the option of using EPROM chips - the 3C905B-TX-NM has been
- successfully tested with 27C256 (32kB) and 27C512 (64kB) chips with a
- specified access time of 100ns and faster.
-
-
-III GENERAL USE
-
- Normally, the basic procedure for using this driver is as follows:
-
- 1. Run the 3c90xcfg program on the driver diskette to enable the
- boot PROM and set it to 64k or 128k, as appropriate.
- 2. Build the appropriate 3c90x.fd0 or 3c90x.fd0 floppy image with
- possibly the value CFG_3C90X_XCVR defined to the transceiver type that
- you want to use (i.e., 10/100 rj45, AUI, coax, MII).
- 3. Run the floppy image on the PC to be network booted, to get
- it configured, and to verify that it will boot properly.
- 4. Build the 3c90x.rom or 3c90x.lzrom PROM image and program
- it into the flash or EPROM memory chip.
- 5. Put the PROM in the ethernet card, boot and enable 'boot from
- network first' in the system BIOS, save and reboot.
-
- Here are some issues to be aware of:
-
- 1. If you experience crashes or different behaviour when using the
- boot PROM, add the setting CFG_3C90X_BOOTROM_FIX and go through the
- steps 2-5 above. This works around a bug in some 3c905B cards (see
- below), but has some side-effects which may not be desirable.
- Please note that you have to boot off a floppy (not PROM!) once for
- this fix to take effect.
- 2. The possible need to manually set the CFG_3C90X_XCVR value to
- configure the transceiver type. Values are listed below.
- 3. The possible need to define CFG_3C90X_PRESERVE_XCVR for use in
- operating systems that don't intelligently determine the
- transceiver type.
-
- Some things that are on the 'To-Do' list, perhaps for me, but perhaps
- for any other volunteers out there:
-
- 1. Extend the driver to fully implement the auto-select
- algorithm if the card has multiple media ports.
- 2. Fix any bugs in the code <grin>....
- 3. Extend the driver to support the 3c905c revision cards
- "officially". Right now, the support has been primarily empirical
- and not based on 3c905C documentation.
-
- Now for the details....
-
- This driver has been tested on roughly 300 systems. The main two
- configuration issues to contend with are:
-
- 1. Ensure that PCI Busmastering is enabled for the adapter (configured
- in the CMOS setup)
- 2. Some systems don't work properly with the adapter when plug and
- play OS is enabled; I always set it to "No" or "Disabled" -- this makes
- it easier and really doesn't adversely affect anything.
-
- Roughly 95% of the systems worked when configured properly. A few
- have issues with booting locally once the boot PROM has been installed
- (this number has been less than 2%). Other configuration issues that
- to check:
-
- 1. Newer BIOS's actually work correctly with the network boot order.
- Set the network adapter first. Most older BIOS's automatically go to
- the network boot PROM first.
- 2. For systems where the adapter was already installed and is just
- having the PROM installed, try setting the "reset configuration data"
- to yes in the CMOS setup if the BIOS isn't seen at first. If your BIOS
- doesn't have this option, remove the card, start the system, shut down,
- install the card and restart (or switch to a different PCI slot).
- 3. Make sure the CMOS security settings aren't preventing a boot.
-
- The 3c905B cards have a significant 'bug' that relates to the flash prom:
- unless the card is set internally to the MII transceiver, it will only
- read the first 8k of the PROM image. Don't ask why -- it seems really
- obscure, but it has to do with the way they mux'd the address lines
- from the PCI bus to the ROM. Unfortunately, most of us are not using
- MII transceivers, and even the .lzrom image ends up being just a little
- bit larger than 8k. Note that the workaround for this is disabled by
- default, because the Windows NT 4.0 driver does not like it (no packets
- are transmitted).
-
- So, the solution that I've used is to internally set the card's nvram
- configuration to use MII when it boots. The 3c905b driver does this
- automatically. This way, the 16k prom image can be loaded into memory,
- and then the 3c905b driver can set the temporary configuration of the
- card to an appropriate value, either configurable by the user or chosen
- by the driver.
-
- To enable the 3c905B bugfix, which is necessary for these cards when
- booting from the Flash ROM, define -DCFG_3C90X_BOOTROM_FIX when building,
- create a floppy image and boot it once.
- Thereafter, the card should accept the larger prom image.
-
- The driver should choose an appropriate transceiver on the card. However,
- if it doesn't on your card or if you need to, for instance, set your
- card to 10mbps when connected to an unmanaged 10/100 hub, you can specify
- which transceiver you want to use. To do this, build the 3c905b.fd0
- image with -DCFG_3C90X_XCVR=x, where 'x' is one of the following
- values:
-
- 0 10Base-T
- 1 10mbps AUI
- 3 10Base-2 (thinnet/coax)
- 4 100Base-TX
- 5 100Base-FX
- 6 MII
- 8 Auto-negotiation 10Base-T / 100Base-TX (usually the default)
- 9 MII External MAC Mode
- 255 Allow driver to choose an 'appropriate' media port.
-
- Then proceed from step 2 in the above 'general use' instructions. The
- .rom image can be built with CFG_3C90X_XCVR set to a value, but you
- normally don't want to do this, since it is easier to change the
- transceiver type by rebuilding a new floppy, changing the BIOS to floppy
- boot, booting, and then changing the BIOS back to network boot. If
- CFG_3C90X_XCVR is not set in a particular build, it just uses the
- current configuration (either its 'best guess' or whatever the stored
- CFG_3C90X_XCVR value was from the last time it was set).
-
- [[ Note for the more technically inclined: The CFG_3C90X_XCVR value is
- programmed into a register in the card's NVRAM that was reserved for
- LanWorks PROM images to use. When the driver boots, the card comes
- up in MII mode, and the driver checks the LanWorks register to find
- out if the user specified a transceiver type. If it finds that
- information, it uses that, otherwise it picks a transceiver that the
- card has based on the 3c905b's MediaOptions register. This driver isn't
- quite smart enough to always determine which media port is actually
- _connected_; maybe someone else would like to take on that task (it
- actually involves sending a self-directed packet and seeing if it
- comes back. IF it does, that port is connected). ]]
-
- Another issue to keep in mind is that it is possible that some OS'es
- might not be happy with the way I've handled the PROM-image hack with
- setting MII mode on bootup. Linux 2.0.35 does not have this problem.
- Behavior of other systems may vary. The 3com documentation specifically
- says that, at least with the card that I have, the device driver in the
- OS should auto-select the media port, so other drivers should work fine
- with this 'hack'. However, if yours doesn't seem to, you can try defining
- CFG_3C90X_PRESERVE_XCVR when building to cause Etherboot to keep the
- working setting (that allowed the bootp/tftp process) across the eth_reset
- operation.
-
-
-IV FOR DEVELOPERS....
-
- If you would like to fix/extend/etc. this driver, feel free to do so; just
- be sure you can test the modified version on the 3c905B-TX cards that the
- driver was originally designed for. This section of this document gives
- some information that might be relevant to a programmer.
-
- A. Main Entry Point
-
- a3c90x_probe is the main entry point for this driver. It is referred
- to in an array in 'config.c'.
-
- B. Other Important Functions
-
- The functions a3c90x_transmit, a3c90x_poll, a3c90x_reset, and
- a3c90x_disable are static functions that EtherBoot finds out about
- as a result of a3c90x_probe setting entries in the nic structure
- for them. The EtherBoot framework does not use interrupts. It is
- polled. All transmit and receive operations are initiated by the
- etherboot framework, not by an interrupt or by the driver.
-
- C. Internal Functions
-
- The following functions are internal to the driver:
-
- a3c90x_internal_IssueCommand - sends a command to the 3c905b card.
- a3c90x_internal_SetWindow - shifts between one of eight register
- windows onboard the 3c90x. The bottom 16 bytes of the card's
- I/O space are multiplexed among 128 bytes, only 16 of which are
- visible at any one time. This SetWindow function selects one of
- the eight sets.
- a3c90x_internal_ReadEeprom - reads a word (16 bits) from the
- card's onboard nvram. This is NOT the BIOS boot rom. This is
- where the card stores such things as its hardware address.
- a3c90x_internal_WriteEeprom - writes a word (16 bits) to the
- card's nvram, and recomputes the eeprom checksum.
- a3c90x_internal_WriteEepromWord - writes a word (16 bits) to the
- card's nvram. Used by the above routine.
- a3c90x_internal_WriteEepromWord - writes a word (16 bits) to the
- card's nvram. Used by the above routine.
-
- D. Globals
-
- All global variables are inside a global structure named INF_3C90X.
- So, wherever you see that structure referenced, you know the variable
- is a global. Just keeps things a little neater.
-
- E. Enumerations
-
- There are quite a few enumerated type definitions for registers and
- so forth, many for registers that I didn't even touch in the driver.
- Register types start with 'reg', window numbers (for SetWindow)
- start with 'win', and commands (for IssueCommand) start with 'cmd'.
- Register offsets also include an indication in the name as to the
- size of the register (_b = byte, _w = word, _l = long), and which
- window the register is in, if it is windowed (0-7).
-
- F. Why the 'a3c90x' name?
-
- I had to come up with a letter at the beginning of all of the
- identifiers, since 3com so conveniently had their name start with a
- number. Another driver used 't' (for 'three'?); I chose 'a' for
- no reason at all.
-
-Addendum by Jorge L. deLyra <delyra@latt.if.usp.br>, 22Nov2000 re
-working around the 3C905 hardware bug mentioned above:
-
-Use this floppy to fix any 3COM model 3C905B PCI 10/100 Ethernet cards
-that fail to load and run the boot program the first time around. If
-they have a "Lucent" rather than a "Broadcom" chipset these cards have
-a configuration bug that causes a hang when trying to load the boot
-program from the PROM, if you try to use them right out of the box.
-
-The boot program in this floppy is the file named 3c905b-tpo100.rom
-from Etherboot version 4.6.10, compiled with the bugfix parameter
-
- CFG_3C90X_BOOTROM_FIX
-
-You have to take the chip off the card and boot the system once using
-this floppy. Once loaded from the floppy, the boot program will access
-the card and change some setting in it, correcting the problem. After
-that you may use either this boot program or the normal one, compiled
-without this bugfix parameter, to boot the machine from the PROM chip.
-
-[Any recent Etherboot version should do, not just 4.6.10 - Ed.]