Linux-ARCnet 3.81 BETA is released

Avery Pennarun (
Fri, 3 Sep 1999 18:07:39 -0400


I'm back!

3.81 was the first new arcnet driver release from me in about two years.
It's been out for a little while but I've only announced it to the
linux-arcnet list, which doesn't have a lot of subscribers. Anyway, I guess
it's time for a (slightly) larger audience.

Eventually (with release 4.0) I plan to get this re-integrated into an
official 2.2.x or 2.3.x kernel. As it is, this new version is probably
already more stable than the old one on 2.2.x, but is missing a few features
(ethernet-encap, RIM I, and com90io drivers).

Find it at:

v3.81 BETA (99/09/01)
- RFC1201 can now transmit split packets again! (Whew!)

- Changed the way device structures are allocated. Now com90xx
autoprobe is slightly less ugly, no longer needs the big static
array, and can (finally!) detect multiple cards without loading
the module more than once.

- We now set the MTU on the arc0 device to the "lowest common
denominator" - the smallest MTU supported by all loaded encaps.
You can always increase it manually if desired, and of course
you can always _receive_ packets of any size.

- Broadcasts have better default behaviour when multiple encaps
are loaded. (Quick summary: if no packets have been received, we
send using the first loaded encap driver; otherwise, we use the
most-recently-received encap type.)

- Added the beginnings of an arcnet-howto document in the howto/
subdirectory. Anybody want to help write it?

- Added some sample programs that show how to use the new
'raw mode' support from userspace.

v3.80 ALPHA (99/08/15)
- Hugely redesigned the driver core. Less typecasting and weird
pointer arithmetic, and we shouldn't have any race conditions
anymore (although the convoluted way we handled things before
probably eliminated the race conditions too). We should now
be completely CPU arch-independent (which means people with
Alpha and PowerPC arcnet cards should try them out!)

- You can use a COM20020-based PCMCIA card without editing source
code or recompiling now, but it's not obvious exactly how.
That'll change later.

- Less code duplication between the hardware-specific modules, so
they're much easier to read. Also broke encapsulation drivers
into separate modules (rfc1201.c, rfc1051.c) and added a new
"raw" encapsulation.

- Major known (and temporary) bugs: ethernet-encap has
disappeared, and com90io and arc-rimi don't compile anymore.
RFC1201 can't transmit (but can receive) split packets, so the
MTU needs to be set lower for now.
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