Known problems and limitations for the 3.1.22 PCMCIA release ============================================================ Bug summaries: o CardBus devices with 2.0.* kernels are not recommended o PCI interrupt routing issues for CardBus bridges on some systems o PCI configuration problems with 2.3.* kernels o O2Micro and ToPIC CardBus bridge configuration problems o On the Sony VAIO PCG-N505VE, interrupts break after a suspend o SCSI drivers are not hot swap safe o Iomega Clik! drives require a kernel patch o Token ring memory allocation issues o Interrupt lossage with Megahertz multifunction cards o The aic7xxx/apa1480_cb driver misbehaves if the cable is detached o Ositech Jack of Diamonds firmware issue o Serial interrupt sharing bug in certain 2.2.*, 2.3.* kernels o aha152x interrupt bug in certain 2.2.* kernels o IDE driver shutdown bug in certain 2.2.*, 2.3.* kernels o Tedious IDE probes for nonexistent slave devices o IDE driver does not share PCI interrupts properly o SuSE 6.4 IDE driver problem o parport_cs doesn't work in 2.3.* o Xircom CardBus driver instability o NE2000 compatible cards based on the Asix AX88190 are unsupported Bug details: o Use of CardBus cards with 2.0.* kernels is discouraged. It may work on some systems, but not on others, due to PCI BIOS limitations. Also, it is harder to diagnose problems, because /proc/bus/pccard is not available with these kernels. o With some PCI host bridges, the PCMCIA subsystem is not able to determine the PCI interrupt routing for CardBus bridges. For some types of CardBus bridges, this means that we can't configure interrupts for CardBus cards at all. When the PCMCIA drivers are loaded, they may complain about an "unknown interrupt router". Prognosis: see the discussion in the PCMCIA-HOWTO. o Some 2.3.* kernels may make mistakes when autoconfiguring CardBus bridges. Specifically, the kernel may memory map bridges at invalid addresses. The i82365 driver reports a "Bad bridge mapping". In other cases, the PCI subsystem may misconfigure PCI interrupts for CardBus bridges. Prognosis: either upgrade to a newer 2.3.* kernel if possible, or revert to a 2.2.* kernel. o Interrupt routing on O2Micro CardBus bridges seems to have problems. Toshiba ToPIC97 bridges also seem to have problems, particularly with Cardbus cards. Prognosis: I think the O2Micro problems should now be fixed. For the ToPIC problem, Toshiba does not seem willing and/or able to provide adequate help, so I've mostly given up on it. For both the O2Micro and ToPIC problems, fixes would require someone with device driver experience and the relevant hardware to work on it: data sheets are available, and I can make suggestions of things to try, but I can't debug the problems by email. With ToPIC chipsets, some systems seem to work better if the bridge mode is changed to either "PCIC" or "CardBus", rather than "Auto", in the BIOS setup menu. In some cases, ToPIC chipsets generate bogus eject/insert sequences when a card is first powered up. It may be useful to increase the vcc_settle and/or setup_time parameters for the pcmcia_core module to prevent this. o On the Sony VAIO PCG-N505VE, after a suspend, no interrupts are delivered by the CardBus bridge until the system is rebooted. Prognosis: I've spent a lot of time trying to track this down, but I'm completely stumped. The PCMCIA drivers appear to restore the state of the CardBus bridge correctly, and the PCI interrupt router is also configured properly. But no interrupts get through. o All of the SCSI drivers, and most of the CardBus drivers, do not implement suspend/resume handling. The only workaround now is to eject these cards (or do "cardctl eject") before suspending. Prognosis: CardBus Network cards will probably be fixed eventually, but it has not been a high priority. SCSI drivers are less likely to be fixed since we're more dependent on kernel code. o The Iomega Clik! drive is incompatible with the kernel ide-floppy driver. A kernel patch for 2.2.14 and later 2.2 kernels is available at http://paulbristow.net/linux/clik.html. o The token ring driver tweaks a problem in the memory management code. To work around the problem, remove all high memory windows from /etc/pcmcia/config.opts. The driver is also completely broken for late 2.1 and early 2.2 kernels. A fix is in 2.2.7. o Megahertz EM1144, EM3288, and EM3336 cards drop interrupts if the modem and ethernet are used simultaneously. Prognosis: Unlikely to be fixed, since these cards are old and we are unlikely to ever get more complete tech info. o The kernel aic7xxx driver, which is linked into the apa1480_cb driver, can generate spurious interrupts when a card is initialized, which can cause system lockups. This will usually happen if the card is inserted with no SCSI cable attached. Prognosis: I've sent a patch to the driver maintainer. The problem can be mostly mitigated by disabling use of PCI interrupts for CardBus cards, by setting PCIC_OPTS="pci_int=0". This setting does not work on some newer laptops; in those cases, you'll have to wait for a kernel update to fix the problem. o Some Ositech Jack of Diamonds 33.6K modem/ethernet cards don't work because of a firmware issue. With these cards, the smc91c92_cs driver reports "Bad chip signature". A DOS program to update the card firmware to v8.1B is available from Ositech's web site at ftp://www.ositech.com/pub/jod/JDCEL422.EXE o The 2.2.*/2.3.* serial driver had a bug that interfered with interrupt sharing for multifunction cards. The effect is that opening a serial port on a multifunction card fails, giving an IO error. It was fixed in 2.2.11 and 2.3.9. The bug can be fixed by editing linux/drivers/char/serial.c and changing each use of IRQ_T(info) to IRQ_T(state). o The kernel aha152x driver, used for Adaptec 16-bit SCSI adapters, had a PCMCIA compatibility problem in 2.2.* that was fixed in 2.2.9. The effect was that interrupts were ignored, unless the card happened to be configured for irq 9..12. Either upgrade to a 2.2.9 or later kernel, or if you have an appropriate interrupt available, add to /etc/pcmcia/config.opts: module "aha152x_cs" opts "irq_list=9,10,11,12" o The kernel IDE driver had a bug that causes shutdown of some PCMCIA IDE cards to cause a kernel trap. It was introduced in 2.2.9/2.3.1 and fixed in 2.2.10/2.3.4. o For some ATA/IDE devices, the IDE driver will lock up the system for up to 15 seconds while probing for (non-existent) slave devices. I've told the IDE maintainer about the issue and it is just a matter of getting the kernel driver updated. There are two aspects to the fix; one is to improve automatic detection of flash memory cards, and the other is to change the probe to sleep instead of freezing the system during the probe. The 2.4 driver is fixed. o The linux IDE driver generates spurious interrupts when it probes for new devices. This is ok at boot time because the IDE probe runs before almost all other drivers. But it causes lockups if the probe is done when another driver is using the same PCI interrupt. This happens when the PCMCIA subsystem is configured to use only PCI interrupts for card status changes as well as card interrupts. Prognosis: the IDE device probe needs to be rewritten; I don't know when that might happen. In some situations, you can work around the issue by using startup options like: PCIC_OPTS="irq_mode=0 pci_csc=0" which will prevent the i82365 driver from sharing the PCI interrupt for monitoring card insert/eject events; this will not help if other PCI devices also need to share. o The SuSE 6.4 version of the 2.2.14 kernel has a broken IDE probe that messes up at least some PCMCIA devices. The result is that the ide_cs driver reports "ide_register(...) failed". Prognosis: substitute drivers/block/ide-probe.c from SuSE's 2.2.13 kernel or from a virgin 2.2.14 source tree. o The 2.3.6 kernel update broke the PCMCIA parport_cs driver. Prognosis: it should be fixable in newer 2.3.* kernels, but I just have not gotten around to doing it. o Xircom CBEM support in the tulip_cb driver seems to be extremely unreliable. A wide range of symptoms are reported, ranging from no packet reception, to correct operation at certain speed/duplex combinations but not others, to frequent missed interrupts. Also, some people have reported kernel faults when a Xircom card is shut down with "ifconfig down". Prognosis: I used to think that the Xircom inconsistencies had to do with multiple chipset revisions. After more study, it seems that the receive filter setup on the Xircom chipset is quirky; different network setups kick the filter differently, so many reported differences in card behavior actually reflect different network setups. Temporarily setting the card to promiscuous mode ("ifconfig eth0 promisc") or all-multicast mode ("ifconfig eth0 allmulti") seems to help with the packet reception issue in some cases. The current driver is broken for more than 6 multicast addresses, unless "allmulti" is used. o A number of "NE2000 compatible" cards use the Asix AX88190 chipset, which has several serious bugs and incompatibilities that render the regular pcnet_cs driver unusable. The pcnet_cs driver will identify and refuse to deal with these cards. Prognosis: a Linux driver is available from the Asix web site at http://www.asix.com.tw/driver2.htm and I'm investigating how to best deal with the issue in the regular pcnet_cs driver. It is a tricky issue and I'm not sure when a better fix will be available.