Embedded Connectivity
Intel network controllers, Firmware, and drivers support systems
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i210 always training to 100Mbs

Ian_m
Beginner
1,352 Views

We have a COMe PC based carrier board, we have designed, that has two i210 ethernet controllers.

We have successfully programmed these devices (NVM & EEPROM) with MAC address and PCIe ID's and are seen correctly and work in Windows 10.

However both controllers always, about 10 seconds after a network cable is plugged in, end up running at 100Mbs. The smart switch at the other end of the cable indicates the i210's are only advertising a max speed of 100Mbs.

We have copied our EEPROM & NVM code to a PCIe i210 add in card (on same system) and when connected connects almost instantly at 1Gbs.

1. Are there any diagnostics/registers/logs we can observe on the i210 (using Lanconfw64) to see why it ends up at 100Mbs.
2. Could it be a PCB &/or circuit design error ?

Ian

 

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10 Replies
Diego_INTEL
Moderator
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Hello @Ian_m,

 

Thank you for contacting Intel Embedded Community.

 

Seems like a possible design error, you can check the center tap of magnetics, I have seen an issue that shorting to ground may get less speed, 100 Mbps and when isolated from ground with .1uF then the i210 worked at 1Gbps without issues.

 

Best regards,

 

@Diego_INTEL 

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tegunulgener
Novice
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Hi Diego_INTEL,

 

I am tegun_U, Ian is away and I done some changes to the hardware according to your reply;

 

-I tried different capacitors for CT1 (pin5) and CT2 (pin 6). 

-I also tried combinations with different capacitors (100uF, 1uF, 100nF, NC and 0 ohm etc)

-I downloaded version 28.3 and tried nvmupdatew64e.exe on them

-Contacted intel support

 

Currently:

CT1 has less than 100uF (in total)

CT2 has no capacitors and linked 0 ohm

 

Results:

1) Initial boot takes (LED activation) takes 1sec (or very immediate) instead of 11 seconds

2) Still 100Mbps

3) nvmupdatew64e.exe comes with an error "unprotected flash" and terminating

 

I have a video for how the LEDs are acting if that helps https://photos.app.goo.gl/wqZZ7ZcEgNnznPQt8

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tegunulgener
Novice
1,260 Views

edit:

CT1 has two 10uF parallel

CT2 has one 0 ohm link

 

PXL_20240130_165014897.jpg

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tegunulgener
Novice
1,230 Views

note: The configuration above changed to symmetrical on CT1 and CT2.

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tegunulgener
Novice
1,234 Views

I managed to make lanconfw64e.exe work and observed that the initial boot works as 100Mbps Half Duplex when the CT1 and CT2 are not identical. I have changed the capacitors to identical and it is 100Mpbs now again however initial boot takes 12 seconds again.

(please see the video above)

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tegunulgener
Novice
1,232 Views

The latest test results below:

PXL_20240131_142339396.jpg

PXL_20240131_142516768.jpg

tegunulgener_0-1706720297752.jpeg

 

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Diego_INTEL
Moderator
1,201 Views

Hello @tegunulgener,

 

Thanks for checking and sharing, but still you can't get higher speeds than 100 Mbps right?

 

I will check what else may be affecting.

 

Best regards,

 

@Diego_INTEL 

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tegunulgener
Novice
748 Views

Hi Diego_INTEL,

My issue here is, LED0 default value is 0110 and the default hex value for LED control is "0x00E00 00078406". I can change it with LANConf through registers but i cannot save it to eeprom. 873 pages of datasheet is either too confusing or not clear. 

 

Could you please help me to understand how to change the raw eeprom value?

 

I attached the eeprom dump

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tegunulgener
Novice
1,180 Views

Hi Diego_INTEL,

 

That is correct. 100Mbps Full Duplex max speed it can achieve. It can also connect at 10 Mbps full duplex and half duplex, as well as 100 Mbps half duplex but not 1000 Mbps at all.

 

I should mention that I tried different combinations of capacitors, either symmetrical or non-symmetrical. It takes 12 seconds to initialise when the capacitors are symmetrical, but it can achieve 100Mbps Full Duplex. If I use an asymmetrical combination, initialising takes a second, however, with 100Mbps Half Duplex.

 

I also compared the settings with a working Ethernet card using the same chip, and apart from memory and bus addresses (and the wake-on LAN sentence), all settings are identical.

 

Kind regards

tegun

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tegunulgener
Novice
664 Views

hi,

 

you can close this topic. we got our solution. thanks.

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