Best of Technical Support

Our experts answer your technical questions.
Trouble with Netscape

I am having trouble getting Netscape to run on Linux. I have Windows NT in the first 4G and installed Linux in the remaining 4G partition. Linux detects the Ethernet card when first installed, but when I log off to use NT and then go back to Linux, Linux no longer sees my Ethernet card. It gives me a “domain not bound” error. I would like to know what is happening. —Yong, yboone@novell.com

Netscape is known to have lots of bugs and problems and not only with Linux in my experience. I recently reinstalled the 4.75RPMs (from the Red Hat ftp site) and, as of now, there seem to be fewer problems, especially related to Java. It is still quite usual for the first process of Netscape to die, but new instances of the program will run fine. Regarding your Ethernet card, you do not mention the brand/model, but I solved a similar problem by turning off the PnP feature of a 3Com 3c590 Ethernet card and, under Windows, making it work as ISA or EISA. Linux worked fine after that. —Felipe E. Barousse Boué, fbarousse@piensa.com

Adjusting Ethernet Cards

I am setting up a cable modem. I have a 10/100 Ethernet card running at full duplex. How do I lock the card to 10MB and half duplex? Is this in the “hwconf” file? If so what does the syntax look like? Any additional help is appreciated. Also, I am running a RCA Cable Modem. —David A. Bower, davidbower@iwon.com

You do not specify the brand of Ethernet card you have. But, usually there is a diskette that comes with the card (or you can download it from the card manufacturer's site) that allows you to turn off the Plug-and-Play and duplexing features of the card. Bear in mind that for some cards this change doesn't really do anything to the behavior of the card, in respect to Linux at least. I would suggest looking at the Ethernet-HOWTO at www.linuxdoc.org/HOWTO/Ethernet-HOWTO.html where you can find additional information about your specific card's settings. —Felipe E. Barousse Boué, fbarousse@piensa.com

Cable modems can be frustrating because they often use a form of DHCP designed for Windows systems only. Setting your card to run half duplex may help and can be done by using the driver as a module rather than as a built-in driver. Then use insmod mydriver.o full_duplex=0. Note that there are a few cards that do not support this parameter. I have had problems even after doing that. To get my cable modem working under Linux, I had to specify ALL of the following switches on the command line of “dhcpcd”: -r -h myhostname.in.windows -I 1:xx:xx:xx:xx:xx:xx -l 3600 eth0. This tells the program to use the RFC1541 (obsolete) protocol, to specify the host name (which you can get by running WINIPCFG from your working Windows system), and to specify the Ethernet address and card (from the same machine; may not be required for you). —Chad Robinson, crobinson@rfgonline.com

Num Lock on Dual-Boot

My machine is set up to dual-boot Red Hat Linux 6.2 and Windows 98. When it boots to Windows 98, the Num Lock stays on, but when it boots to Linux, the it goes off. Is there a way to change this behavior so I don't have to press the Num Lock key each time I start Linux? —Michael Kaneshige, kaneshige@uswest.net

If you are working in text mode, look at the man page for the setleds command. In one of the initialization scripts, let's say /etc/rc.d/rc.local, add something like:

for i in 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 dosetleds -D +num < tty$i done

This will turn on Num Lock by default when booting up your system. If you are using a Graphic User Interface, there is usually an Options setting specifically for the Num Lock status at boot time. —Felipe E. Barousse Boué, fbarousse@piensa.com

You can add these commands to your /etc/rc.d/rc.local boot script:

INITTY=/dev/tty[1-8] for tty in $INITTY; setleds -D +num < $tty
done

--Pierre Ficheux, pficheux@com1.fr

PCMCIA Card on a Laptop

I'm installing Red Hat 6.1 on a laptop. How do I get it to read/load the pcmcia card and not the eth0? —Anthony G., anthonynvs@relaypoint.net

You should look at the /etc/rc.d/rc3.d/* startup scripts to see the order in which the pcmcia and eth0 boards are initialized. Renaming the files with higher or lower numbers (S10xxxxx, S20xxxx, etc.) will redetermine that order. Many startup services are stored there, so be careful when playing with these files. Also, check the chkconfig --help command, so you can turn one service on and the other off. Lastly, to manually initialize or stop the pcmcia or Ethernet boards, use the commands:

/etc/rc.d/init.d/pcmcia [stop|start|restart]ifdown eth0
ifup eth0

--Felipe E. Barousse Boué, fbarousse@piensa.com

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