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Date:	Fri, 18 Apr 2008 21:19:15 +0200
From:	Michael Buesch <>
To:	"Nelson A. de Oliveira" <>
Cc:	"Andrew Morton" <>,,,
	"Gary Zambrano" <>
Subject: Re: [Bugme-new] [Bug 10473] New: Infinite loop "b44: eth0: powering down PHY"

On Friday 18 April 2008 21:02:37 Nelson A. de Oliveira wrote:
> Hi!
> On Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 3:18 PM, Michael Buesch <> wrote:
> > On Friday 18 April 2008 20:09:36 Nelson A. de Oliveira wrote:
> >  > On Fri, Apr 18, 2008 at 2:59 PM, Michael Buesch <> wrote:
> >  > >  > b44_poll: istat = 0x00000400
> >  > >
> >  > >  Hm, a descriptor error. Smells like my DMA fix actually broke this, damit.
> >  > >  On which architecture are you running?
> >  >
> >  > i386 here.
> >
> >  Hm, I tested my patch on i386.
> >  So I'm not sure what's going on, actually. And the patch was pretty
> >  trivial and I really can't find a bug in it.
> >  So you say 2.6.24 was still working?
> Strange... compiled, 2.6.24 and 2.6.23 here and they are all
> stopping with this:
> b44: eth0: Link is up at 100 Mbps, full duplex.
> b44: eth0: Flow control is off for TX and off for RX.
> And it seems to keep waiting for something. The system isn't freezed
> (as CTRL+ALT+DEL kills the running processes and correctly reboots the
> machine).

Well. 2.6.24 didn't have this message. But it could still have the actual
bug, of course. So can you try applying my printk patch to a broken 2.6.24
kernel and see whether it triggers the message or not? Under normal
circumstances this codepath should never trigger.

> With Debian's it is working.
> With vanilla 2.6.25 and my config it just enters an infinite loop of
> "b44: eth0: powering down PHY".

This message was added in 2.6.25. That doesn't mean the
bug was also added in 2.6.25, of course.

> Can different GCC versions cause this? Can a bad .config file cause
> things like that? (I am using this .config for a long time and it has
> always been working correctly, at least until now)

Well, possible, although unlikely.

Can you try bisecting the bug? Yeah, I know about the lwn article [1] that
says bisecting is baaaaaad (tm), but my opinion is different. :)
It's an excellent tool for efficiently finding patches that caused bugs.
But take care to really check whether device _works_ or not. Just looking
at the actual "powering down PHY" will _not_ be enough, as that was only
recently added, as I said.


Greetings Michael.
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