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Community Manager
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DOS driver problem with Intel 82577LM Gigabit Network Adapter

Hi I am a system builder and I use a DOS boot disk in order to connect to my ghost sessions (ghostcast 8.2.0.1117). I have found the latest series of laptops seems to have a connection drop issue when using the DOS drivers from Intel's site (although the DOS drivers directly from Intel are much more stable than the ones available at Lenovo which haven't been updated in quite some time).

What happens is that the card will see the server, connect, seemingly transfer the data fine but suddenly drop out at a random interval. I finish the ghost session without a drop in probably 1 out of 2 cases, and typical ghost session lasts roughly a half hour to transfer the image to the computer.

I saw that there was an Intel engineer that posted a reply stating a fix would be coming out for the Windows versions of the driver, but didn't see anything listed about the DOS version. Looking around online, I found that this issue was posted elsewhere on a few other system builder message forums, with many other people having the exact same issue with the 82577LM gigabit network adapter. My company uses both the Lenovo T410's, X201's, as well as the Dell E6410's etc. which all use this network adapter. Previous to the latest laptops having 82577LM network adapter, this issue never happened in my computer lab.

Since the engineers are looking at the windows driver, can you please take a look at the DOS driver as well and see if you can fix the issue? Since the problem is intermittent it's very hard to find the exact cause of why it's happening.

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Community Manager
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One more addendum to the above is that when I run a continuous ping on the client from my computer which is on the same gigabit switch, the vast majority are <1ms, but there are occasional spikes in latency which create ping time all the way into the hundreds. This behavior confuses me, since as I mentioned I'm on the same physical switch as the client machines in question and typically I get a solid <1ms stream when imaging computers with gigabit connections, such as the previous line of T400, T500, E6400, E6500, etc..

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We are also still using DOS drivers in conjunction with Ghost and are experiencing this same problem. The sessions intermittantly timeout making it very difficult to accomplish anything in great volume. I've done a good deal of troubleshooting on the problem and the common element is always the 825577LM with more than 10 other models of computer using a PRO1000 adapter and the same DOS driver with no issue. Different versions of Ghost or a different network setup does not resolve the problem. Eliminating all other network traffic safe for the server and client doesn't make any difference. At some point the session just times out, sometimes at the beginning sometimes at the end, occasionally not at all but often enought to triple or quadruple the usual time needed to work with any other system. Hopefully Intel will address the issue soon for the DOS driver as quickly as they have provided updates for the Windows versions of this same adapter. Hello Intel? Anybody?

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Community Manager
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mlitchfield you are spot on here. My initial reaction was to think something was wrong with the switch I was using, or the wiring, but no matter what I tried I encountered the same exact problem. It only occurs with the 82577LM, nothing else. Any other network card I use works fine on my gigabit switch. The DOS drivers supplied by Lenovo were even worse in terms of stability than the ones you can download directly from Intel, so Intel must know about the issue.

I'm just hoping for an official response and a timeline of when this can get working. The two most common models my company uses where this occurs are the Lenovo Thinkpad T410 and the Dell Latitude E6410. Two totally different companies, both using the exact same network adapter, both with the exact same issues with the DOS drivers.

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Community Manager
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For the time being we've found a solution it would seem. Using the Universal Packet Driver seems to fix the issue. I've been able to to reliably multicast and capture images without it timing out a single time. The problem presented itself for us with the introduction of the same Lenvo model, the T410.

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Community Manager
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Do you have a link to the UPD, and does it allow full gigabit duplex? If so I will build it into my customized boot disk.

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Community Manager
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It's part of the newest version of ghost. You can download the trial version, use the Ghost Boot Disk Wizard to get the Universal Packet Drivers, make a Boot Disk, and then substite the version of the ghost and/or ghostwalker executables that you own onto the image.

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Community Manager
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I am running into the same problem. I am lost - I downloaded the trial version of Ghost (may be the wrong one) because I cannot find the Ghost Boot Wizard in order to create the boot disk for the laptops at my College that have the Intel 82577LM Gigabit Network Adapter. Any help would be appreciate.

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Community Manager
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Ghost http://www.softpedia.com/get/System/Back-Up-and-Recovery/Symantec-Norton-Ghost.shtml Norton Ghost 15.0.0.35659:

 

If this is not the one, could you please provide me with a link to the one you downloaded. I need to roll out these laptops and am unable to go any further.
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Employee
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I haven't used Ghost in many years, but I have been told that the recent versions support Windows PE. Maybe you could use Windows PE instead of DOS. If you search for "ghost windows pe" there are a few threads on other sites about doing this. I have never done it myself, so I can't tell you how.

Mark H

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Community Manager
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I did find the 2.5.1 version. Was able to create a boot USB, but it locks up after the line "My Ethernet address is . . ."

I found where to set the PXE as on, but where would you find in BIOS to enable Option ROM and UNDI???? Please help.

Also, I took the option Universal Packet Driver and not the one that ended in [irqcfg] - suggestions?

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Community Manager
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I am pretty sure I figured it out. I did not yet perform a ghost because I am redoing the image on a clean machine and then going to try later this today.

But, I am able to bind/connect to my ghost server using the NDIS2 - DOS drivers.

I used a jump drive.

I removed a line in the config file towards the end of the process "If exist MOUSE.COM . . ." and finished creating my bootable jump dirve.

All Worked - able to connect without hanging.

Jennifer

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I am dissatisfied with the way Intel has handled this issue. A generic driver written by someone else works better than the driver that the Intel engineers wrote themselves?

C'mon Intel, give us a new working DOS driver please!

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Community Manager
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As an update, I just tested out the new DOS driver (15.7), release date 11/17, and it seems to be working a lot better so far, just imaged a bunch of computers without a single crash *crosses fingers*.

-- update 2 --

Same issue is still occurring, just at a reduced frequency.

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