FA511 Behind A Switch

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I've been trying to get this craptastic Compaq Presario 1277 to the
internet, but it's been an elusive affair.

Currently I have Windows 98se installed because it's the only
lightweight operating system that affords any responsiveness.  Lubuntu
was a grind, SliTaz would install but not boot, and before trying other
Linux options, I wanted to see what I would get using the OS that this
machine was "designed for."  But I digress...

The immediate problem is in trying to use a Netgear FA511 network card.
  The drivers install without complaint, and appear to be properly
installed.  Getting an ip address and seeing my gateway is another
matter, though.  The 100M light just blinks in sync with the "Link/Act",
"100" and "FD/Col" lights on my Linksys switch.  The activity light on
the Netgear card never burps.

If I take the switch out of the equation, I can connect to my network
and the internets beyond without any difficulty.  (Well, no more
difficulty than is to be expected with Windows 98se.)  In this
configuration, the laptop is still connected through a router and
broadband modem.  It seems odd that one more switch is such a problem.

Any ideas what might be going on, and short of running a separate line
up to this room, get around it?

Re: FA511 Behind A Switch

On 8/30/2010 11:53 AM, Grinder wrote:
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Try going into the network card driver and configure it to use a
specific speed, and not use auto speed.  I have run into a few cases
with switches (and older routers) that fought for control as to speed
selection due to the sampling speed of the two devices.

Another suggestion would be to run a temporary cable between the two
devices and verify the problem still persists.  I have had a cable
connector be slightly over-crimped  when it was made that would not make
a good electrical connection with one device but would work perfectly
with a second device of the same brand.  Suspected minor differences
between the female and male connectors.  I Replaced the connector on the
cable even though it tested good with a cable tester and all was good
with the cable.

Using one of those two part cable testers is also a plus.  I have seen
them on the internet for $12. or less from time to time.  With the
higher speeds using more of the wires Ethernet cable testing is more of
an issue than it used to be.

Re: FA511 Behind A Switch

On 8/30/2010 11:53 AM, Grinder wrote:
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Ok, it turns out the answer to this is that I'm an idiot and should not
be allowed near technology.  My line into the switch was using the port
that's "shared" with uplink port, which had an unterminated cable
plugged into it.  I don't know why the FA511 did not like that
arrangement, when no other laptops (literally dozens) seemed to care.

That description reveals more foolishness as well.  Somewhere along the
line I plugged my "incoming" connection from my router into a regular
port instead of the uplink port.  It's been working fine, though, so it
took this long for me to pay the penalty of being an idiot.

Thanks GBM for the response.  Your comments are useful and will be filed
away for the day when I have a problem that is not entirely of my own

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