PfSense & Marvell 88E8056 NICs = a tragic story



  • Howdy all,

    It appears that the Marvell 88E8056 NIC and PfSense do not like to play together… I happen to have an MSI Fuzzy RS690T board (based on the AMD 690 chipset) with two of these NICs embedded in the board.

    I've set one of them (named msk1) as the WAN port and one (named msk1) as the LAN port. Appears that at first I had TCP Segmentation errors on the msk0 port, and after I disabled TCP segmentation (ifconfig msk0 -tos), I got "Tx Mac parity error" which I could not get rid of; the result was a disconnect every 30 seconds or so.

    I went back to Endian UTM which works fine but I really hoped to give PfSense a try...

    Anyone else experience these kind of issues?



  • What version of pfSense did you try?

    If you haven't already tried a snapshot build of pfSense 2.0 I suggest you do so. It has more up to date device drivers than earlier pfSense builds. Unfortjunately the snapshot build server has been down for what seems like a couple of days and is still down.


  • Netgate Administrator

    A quick search reveals nothing but tales of woe!
    However I'm using several 88E8053 NICs successfully with the msk driver under 2.0Beta.

    I always get errors in the log similar to:

    Configuring LAN mskc2: Uncorrectable PCI Express error
    interface...msk2: link state changed to DOWN
    

    But then they come up OK anyway. The only issue I have is the driver doesn't configure the LEDs correctly, but I can live with that.

    Steve

    Edit: I remembered that's not true! When I was testing the maximum VPN throughput for my box the NIC would go down if it was receiving as fast as possible. It would report 'watchdog timeout' and stop responding.

    Some Googling shows that there is a special MSI setting for this interface. Try it like so:

    sysctl hw.msk.msi_disable=1
    

  • Netgate Administrator

    Also from the FreeNAS forum here.

    You could also try:

    
    hw.pci.enable_msi=0
    hw.pci.enable_msix=0
    

    Steve

    Edit: FYI is this case it is just coincidence that you have an MSI motherboard. Message Signaled Interrupts is what we're referring to here. You learn something everyday!  ::)



  • Hmmm… Well perhaps I'll givevthe beta snapshot a try. I tested with 1.2.3 stable release - only one available for download at this point :/

    One 2.0 goes to live - will I be able to update via the GUI rather than reinstall everything?



  • @McFuzz:

    One 2.0 goes to live - will I be able to update via the GUI rather than reinstall everything?

    I have successfully done firmware upgrades from pfSense 1.2.3 to pfSense 2.0. A number of other people have reported similar success. You might need to tweak things a little after the upgrade.



  • @wallabybob:

    @McFuzz:

    One 2.0 goes to live - will I be able to update via the GUI rather than reinstall everything?

    I have successfully done firmware upgrades from pfSense 1.2.3 to pfSense 2.0. A number of other people have reported similar success. You might need to tweak things a little after the upgrade.

    Great! :) Well… hopefully the snapshot server will go back on soon and I'll grab the image and will try it next week.


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