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Date:	Wed, 11 Jul 2007 11:58:08 +0100
From:	Ben Dooks <>
To:	Linux netdev <>
Subject: ethtool locking

I am currently upgrading the DM9000 network driver to support
ethtool for items such as controlling the MII interface and
have the following question about locking with the ethtool

Most devices use an overall spinlock when changing the settings
such as in the 8139too.c driver:

static int rtl8139_set_settings(struct net_device *dev, struct ethtool_cmd *cmd)
	struct rtl8139_private *np = netdev_priv(dev);
	int rc;
	rc = mii_ethtool_sset(&np->mii, cmd);
	return rc;

In the case of the DM9000, the phy read and write code
already has a spinlock in for hardware access.

Do I need any more locking for the MII calls other than
what is provided by the lower layer (IE, do these calls
need locking against anything else?)

Ben (,

  'a smiley only costs 4 bytes'
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