B57 / Q57 Lan Driver Problems - Aug. 1, 2004

Aug 6, 2004 - New Broadcom drivers (NetWare = ver. 7.61 at this time), available HERE.

Feb. 6, 2004 - New HP/Compaq versions released, available HERE.

Broadcom makes chipsets for a popular (infamous!) gigabit network card, used by various server manufacturers, including Dell and Compaq. The chipset is also used in 3COM 3C996 network cards.

In non-Compaq servers, the LAN driver comes up as B57.LAN, while Compaq makes a version that comes up as Q57.LAN.

You should be able to use a B57 driver in a Compaq. I don't really know why Compaq has their own version, or if you lose any features. (I am told the driver 'works fine'.)

It is important that you also have the latest TCPIP patch from Novell when using these drivers. Some of the fixes in certain versions of the drivers only fixed certain problems if the TCPIP modules were also updated.

There are some pretty bad issues with the drivers for these cards, and several very bad driver versions. For instance, the March 2002 driver in NW6SP2.EXE has a number of problems, but the January 2002 version seemed much better.

There are some Novell TID's that discuss issues with B57 cards (linked below). One of the most ridiculous issues is that all B57 cards (and perhaps Q57 cards) gave the same MAC address! Certain driver versions did some UDP operations that crippled network performance, especially in regard to DHCP.

Dec. 12, 2003: New Compaq version of the Q57 driver (6.05) is released, and available HERE.

Oct. 6, 2003 Update: New Broadcom drivers released, and available HERE.

Older Note: Since I put this web page up and provided a workable beta version of the drivers, both Compaq and Broadcom have made newer versions available, at links shown below. A beta version (ver. 2.38) of the B57 driver has been developed, and you can download it HERE. There is a Q57.LDI file included, and so this driver should work on Compaq servers, but I have not tested that. Better to use the updated Q57 driver listed below. Same with B57 drivers.

July 4, 2003: The B57 drivers available from Broadcom's web site do not include BASP.LAN for load balancing / fault tolerance. Dell has a set of drivers that include the file. You have to search Dell's web site for BCOM_LAN_66_NW_A02.EXE. Or you can download the drivers directly (via FTP) at http://ftp1.us.dell.com/network/bcom_lan_66_nw_a02.exe. Thanks to Marcel Cox for this information.

July 3, 2003: B57 drivers now available for download from Broadcom's web site. For NetWare servers, I believe you want the NetWare (ODI32) version.


June 30, 2003: Driver for Compaq Q57 cards is available from Compaq at the link

June 9, 2003: The readme for the TCP607J.EXE and TCP583J.EXE patches for TCPIP indicate that they have fixes addressing some B57/Q57 issues involving UDP checksumming.

June 2, 2003: Thanks to Jeffrey Sessler, who pointed out:

"Wanted to let you know that the current B75.LAN driver is now version 6.01a dated April 18, 2003. I found it posted to the Dell support site for the 2650 servers. It also includes a newer version of BASP.LAN version 2.19 dated Feb 13, 2003."

May 5, 2003: Thanks to John Goutbeck, who provided an updated B57.LDI file with the proper CHECKSUM option.

Feb. 24, 2003: Compaq released an updated Q57 driver at the following URL:

Feb. 5, 2003: I am told that the B57 driver can be used to replace Q57 drivers, and also that the Q57.LDI file contains a new setting for UDP checksumming that provides an option in INETCFG to disable checksumming. The default for disabling checksumming is off, but you need to enable that option (disable checksum!). I assume that the Q57.LDI file can be used with Q57 drivers simply to give the INETCFG option, OR you could simply replace the Q57 driver with the B57 driver.

Here are some TID's discussing B57 / Q57 issues:

Duplicate node address with B57 NIC -

B57.LAN loses communication -

Communication problems after applying NW51 sp5 or NW6 sp2 -

DHCP not handing out IP Addresses -

server hangs using 3Com 3C996 (BroadCom) gigabit ethernet adapter -

There are other TID's as well. Search Novell's Knowledgebase for B57.

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