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I need a hint (or several)...

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  • iithomas
    I need help, as in hints at least. I have a NSLU2 unmodified (as is) and have serious performance problems with the attached LaCie Porsche 250GB USB2 drive. I
    Message 1 of 7 , Jan 2, 2005
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      I need help, as in hints at least.

      I have a NSLU2 unmodified (as is) and have serious performance
      problems with the attached LaCie Porsche 250GB USB2 drive. I can't
      get more than ca 150KB/sec in reading/writing from/to the drive. (I
      have a 100Mb Fast Ethernet with no other problems of this kind.)

      Because of this, and as it seems I can't get any help from Linksys to
      solve the problem, I have thought of installing the unslung firmware
      (3.16 seems to be the right one).

      But will this make me able to solve the problem ?
      I can see five types of possible reasons to the problem:
      1. NSLU2 is running at 10Mb speed against the network/Ethernet.
      2. NSLU2 is not using DMA mode when accessing the drive (instead PIO
      mode of some sort or whatever).
      3. The USB "connection" is not running correctly at USB2 "mode" (?).
      4. Some sort of internal "process" is interfering constantly with the
      data transfer to/from the drive.
      5. Hardware failure.

      As I have no other problem except perfomance I think HW failure is not
      of a high probability (?).

      Soo... If I have successfully installed unslung 3.16, what can I then
      do to probe/solve no 1. to 4. as above ?

      TIA
      Thomas
    • unix fan
      You forgot about the box in the middle, your router or switch. What is it? It s quite possible the connection to the NSLU2 has been incorrectly autonegotiated
      Message 2 of 7 , Jan 2, 2005
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        You forgot about the box in the middle, your router or
        switch.
        What is it?

        It's quite possible the connection to the NSLU2 has
        been incorrectly autonegotiated with a mismatched
        duplex setting. Even high end Cisco routers and Sun
        Workstations have this problem. That trashes the
        network connection (lots of errors).

        I don't know how you can tell what the router/switch
        port duplex setting is. But if you want to probe at
        the problem, go buy a crossover cable and connect the
        NSLU2 directly to your computer's NIC )i.e., the RJ45
        port. That would at least get the router and the
        cabling to it out of the equation.

        another data point:
        If you have a 2nd drive hooked up to the NSLU2, you
        can test the disk to disk speed by scheduling a
        backup. That would give you figure that might indicate
        whether your focus should be on disk access or network
        speeds.

        unix_fan

        --- iithomas <ppyahoo@...> wrote:

        >
        > I need help, as in hints at least.
        >
        > I have a NSLU2 unmodified (as is) and have serious
        > performance
        > problems with the attached LaCie Porsche 250GB USB2
        > drive. I can't
        > get more than ca 150KB/sec in reading/writing
        > from/to the drive. (I
        > have a 100Mb Fast Ethernet with no other problems of
        > this kind.)
        >
        > Because of this, and as it seems I can't get any
        > help from Linksys to
        > solve the problem, I have thought of installing the
        > unslung firmware
        > (3.16 seems to be the right one).
        >
        > But will this make me able to solve the problem ?
        > I can see five types of possible reasons to the
        > problem:
        > 1. NSLU2 is running at 10Mb speed against the
        > network/Ethernet.
        > 2. NSLU2 is not using DMA mode when accessing the
        > drive (instead PIO
        > mode of some sort or whatever).
        > 3. The USB "connection" is not running correctly at
        > USB2 "mode" (?).
        > 4. Some sort of internal "process" is interfering
        > constantly with the
        > data transfer to/from the drive.
        > 5. Hardware failure.
        >
        > As I have no other problem except perfomance I think
        > HW failure is not
        > of a high probability (?).
        >
        > Soo... If I have successfully installed unslung
        > 3.16, what can I then
        > do to probe/solve no 1. to 4. as above ?
        >
        > TIA
        > Thomas
        >
        >
        >
        >




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      • iithomas
        ... A Netgear Fast Ethernet hub (FE 104). ... You certainly have a point here. Although I have had no problem with this hub earlier it could of course be
        Message 3 of 7 , Jan 3, 2005
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          --- In nslu2-general@yahoogroups.com, unix fan <unix_fan@y...> wrote:
          > You forgot about the box in the middle, your router or
          > switch.
          > What is it?

          A Netgear Fast Ethernet hub (FE 104).

          >
          > It's quite possible the connection to the NSLU2 has
          > been incorrectly autonegotiated with a mismatched
          > duplex setting. Even high end Cisco routers and Sun
          > Workstations have this problem. That trashes the
          > network connection (lots of errors).

          You certainly have a point here. Although I have had no problem with
          this hub earlier it could of course be something with the combination
          of the hub and NSLU2.

          > I don't know how you can tell what the router/switch
          > port duplex setting is. But if you want to probe at
          > the problem, go buy a crossover cable and connect the
          > NSLU2 directly to your computer's NIC )i.e., the RJ45
          > port. That would at least get the router and the
          > cabling to it out of the equation.

          I haven't thought of this, a very good idea. (Other ways of testing
          would have cost too much, as another HD etc.)

          > another data point:
          > If you have a 2nd drive hooked up to the NSLU2, you
          > can test the disk to disk speed by scheduling a
          > backup. That would give you figure that might indicate
          > whether your focus should be on disk access or network
          > speeds.

          I have only one USB disk unfortunately.

          >
          > unix_fan
          >

          Thanks !
          (And why didn't I think of this myself ?? :) )

          Thomas

          > --- iithomas <ppyahoo@t...> wrote:
          >
          > >
          > > I need help, as in hints at least.
          > >
          > > I have a NSLU2 unmodified (as is) and have serious
          > > performance
          > > problems with the attached LaCie Porsche 250GB USB2
          > > drive. I can't
          > > get more than ca 150KB/sec in reading/writing
          > > from/to the drive. (I
          > > have a 100Mb Fast Ethernet with no other problems of
          > > this kind.)
          > >
          > > Because of this, and as it seems I can't get any
          > > help from Linksys to
          > > solve the problem, I have thought of installing the
          > > unslung firmware
          > > (3.16 seems to be the right one).
          > >
          > > But will this make me able to solve the problem ?
          > > I can see five types of possible reasons to the
          > > problem:
          > > 1. NSLU2 is running at 10Mb speed against the
          > > network/Ethernet.
          > > 2. NSLU2 is not using DMA mode when accessing the
          > > drive (instead PIO
          > > mode of some sort or whatever).
          > > 3. The USB "connection" is not running correctly at
          > > USB2 "mode" (?).
          > > 4. Some sort of internal "process" is interfering
          > > constantly with the
          > > data transfer to/from the drive.
          > > 5. Hardware failure.
          > >
          > > As I have no other problem except perfomance I think
          > > HW failure is not
          > > of a high probability (?).
          > >
          > > Soo... If I have successfully installed unslung
          > > 3.16, what can I then
          > > do to probe/solve no 1. to 4. as above ?
          > >
          > > TIA
          > > Thomas
          > >
        • Michael Wagner
          ... From: iithomas ... What OS are you using as the client? I had this problem with W2K as a client (about 150KB/s). With WIN98 as a
          Message 4 of 7 , Jan 3, 2005
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            ----- Original Message -----
            From: "iithomas" <ppyahoo@...>


            > I have a NSLU2 unmodified (as is) and have serious performance
            > problems with the attached LaCie Porsche 250GB USB2 drive. I can't
            > get more than ca 150KB/sec in reading/writing from/to the drive. (I
            > have a 100Mb Fast Ethernet with no other problems of this kind.)

            What OS are you using as the client?

            I had this problem with W2K as a client (about 150KB/s).

            With WIN98 as a client (same network, same data, same source, WIN98 machine
            is 1/10th the speed) I get 1.8MB/s.

            I found several microsoft knowledgebase articles which refer to the fact
            that W2K will misunderstand and set the wrong communications parameters in a
            number of cases talking to what it thinks are older servers.

            The NSLU2 says it is a Windows NT 4.9 machine (there never was such a
            release of NT AFAIK).

            So I am guessing that W2K is misunderstanding the server at the other end.

            My bypass for the moment was to use the WIN98 box to load the hard disk.

            The MS KB articles implied there was a "feature" of W2K you could turn off
            that would "solve" the performance problem. I haven't gone there yet.

            More when I know more.

            > I can see five types of possible reasons to the problem:
            > 1. NSLU2 is running at 10Mb speed against the network/Ethernet.

            I doubt it, since I'm getting 1.8MB/sec out of it, which is about 18Mb/sec >
            10Mb/sec

            > 2. NSLU2 is not using DMA mode when accessing the drive (instead PIO
            > mode of some sort or whatever).
            > 3. The USB "connection" is not running correctly at USB2 "mode" (?).
            > 4. Some sort of internal "process" is interfering constantly with the
            > data transfer to/from the drive.
            > 5. Hardware failure.

            You missed "client is driving the server wrong". The MS KB articles talked
            about a feature called, I think, optimistic locking (not to be confused with
            the foxpro feature of similar name). W2K can in some conditions mistakenly
            turn this on, then wait after each write for some acknowledgement or
            handshake or something it isn't going to get from a server that doesn't
            support the feature.

            Michael Wagner
            michael@...
            905-761-9094
            Director, Hamond Industries Ltd
            - - - - - - - - -
            Web site: www.hamond.com
            weB LOG www.stampingoutaliving.com
          • iithomas
            ... W2K SP3 - and also tested at another pc at connected to the same hub running Win98SE (*same* result: a 2143KB file took 13-15 seconds to copy). ...
            Message 5 of 7 , Jan 3, 2005
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              --- In nslu2-general@yahoogroups.com, "Michael Wagner" <michael@t...>
              wrote:
              > ----- Original Message -----
              > From: "iithomas" <ppyahoo@t...>
              >
              > > I have a NSLU2 unmodified (as is) and have serious performance
              > > problems with the attached LaCie Porsche 250GB USB2 drive. I can't
              > > get more than ca 150KB/sec in reading/writing from/to the drive. (I
              > > have a 100Mb Fast Ethernet with no other problems of this kind.)
              >
              > What OS are you using as the client?

              W2K SP3 - and also tested at another pc at connected to the same hub
              running Win98SE (*same* result: a 2143KB file took 13-15 seconds to copy).

              >
              > I had this problem with W2K as a client (about 150KB/s).

              Interesting that You have the *same* slow performance rate as I have.
              BUT as I get the same result with my Win98SE pc (same hub) it's maybe
              caused by soemthing else !?
              (Also note that through the same hub other file transfers (that is:
              not to/from NSLU2) are going fast(er), e g from the mentioned Win98SE
              pc to my W2K pc etc.)

              > With WIN98 as a client (same network, same data, same source, WIN98
              machine
              > is 1/10th the speed) I get 1.8MB/s.
              >
              > I found several microsoft knowledgebase articles which refer to the fact
              > that W2K will misunderstand and set the wrong communications
              parameters in a
              > number of cases talking to what it thinks are older servers.
              >
              > The NSLU2 says it is a Windows NT 4.9 machine (there never was such a
              > release of NT AFAIK).
              >
              > So I am guessing that W2K is misunderstanding the server at the
              other end.
              >
              > My bypass for the moment was to use the WIN98 box to load the hard disk.
              >
              > The MS KB articles implied there was a "feature" of W2K you could
              turn off
              > that would "solve" the performance problem. I haven't gone there yet.
              >
              > More when I know more.
              >
              > > I can see five types of possible reasons to the problem:
              > > 1. NSLU2 is running at 10Mb speed against the network/Ethernet.
              >
              > I doubt it, since I'm getting 1.8MB/sec out of it, which is about
              18Mb/sec >
              > 10Mb/sec

              Yes, but it could e g be that NSLU2 in this case have "downnegotiated"
              (to 10Mb/sec or lower) the speed by some reason.
              >
              > > 2. NSLU2 is not using DMA mode when accessing the drive (instead PIO
              > > mode of some sort or whatever).
              > > 3. The USB "connection" is not running correctly at USB2 "mode" (?).
              > > 4. Some sort of internal "process" is interfering constantly with the
              > > data transfer to/from the drive.
              > > 5. Hardware failure.
              >
              > You missed "client is driving the server wrong". The MS KB articles
              talked
              > about a feature called, I think, optimistic locking (not to be
              confused with
              > the foxpro feature of similar name). W2K can in some conditions
              mistakenly
              > turn this on, then wait after each write for some acknowledgement or
              > handshake or something it isn't going to get from a server that doesn't
              > support the feature.

              I have searched for "optimistic locking" with Google but did only find
              that term in connection with Access (or other SQL-type) databases.

              BTW, I have implemented a couple of MS "knowledge base" tips with *no
              result*. ( http://support.microsoft.com/kb/223140 and
              http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;q321098 and
              one I can't find a MS url for, description:

              Possible task scheduling bug:
              ... a bug that exists in both Windows XP and in Windows 2000. The bug
              causes Windows to check for any scheduled tasks that might exist on a
              remote machine before displaying the browse contents.

              This particular bug is also controlled by the registry. To solve the
              problem, just remove the following registry key:
              HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\
              Explorer\RemoteComputer\NameSpace\{D6277990-4C6A-11CF-8D87-00AA0060F5BF}.
              )

              >
              > Michael Wagner
              > michael@h...
              > 905-761-9094
              > Director, Hamond Industries Ltd
              > - - - - - - - - -
              > Web site: www.hamond.com
              > weB LOG www.stampingoutaliving.com

              Thanks for the info !
              Thomas Berg
            • Michael Wagner
              ... Sorry, that was opportunistic locking. You re right, optimistic locking is a database term. ... That s what you can expect from MS :-) Try 296264. I
              Message 6 of 7 , Jan 3, 2005
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                At 03/01/2005 07:47 PM, you wrote:
                >I have searched for "optimistic locking" with Google but did only find
                >that term in connection with Access (or other SQL-type) databases.

                Sorry, that was opportunistic locking. You're right, optimistic locking is
                a database term.

                >I have implemented a couple of MS "knowledge base" tips with *no result*.

                That's what you can expect from MS :-)

                Try 296264. I haven't tried it yet, so no guarantees.

                Michael

                http://home.cogeco.ca/~michaelwagner/personal-page.htm
                "All I wanna do is have a little fun before I die" Sheryl Crow
              • Rob Lockhart
                ... Actually, a good switch would be better than a crossover cable. I believe that full duplex communications require either forcing on both ends, or
                Message 7 of 7 , Jan 8, 2005
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                  On 1/3/2005 1:36 AM EST, unix fan wrote:

                  >
                  > You forgot about the box in the middle, your router or switch. What
                  > is it?
                  >
                  > It's quite possible the connection to the NSLU2 has been incorrectly
                  > autonegotiated with a mismatched duplex setting. Even high end Cisco
                  > routers and Sun Workstations have this problem. That trashes the
                  > network connection (lots of errors). I don't know how you can tell
                  > what the router/switch port duplex setting is. But if you want to
                  > probe at the problem, go buy a crossover cable and connect the NSLU2
                  > directly to your computer's NIC )i.e., the RJ45 port. That would at
                  > least get the router and the cabling to it out of the equation.
                  >

                  Actually, a good switch would be better than a crossover cable. I
                  believe that full duplex communications require either forcing on both
                  ends, or auto-negotiating with a NWAY hardware switch. One PC to
                  another PC will likely not autonegotiate to 100Mbps full-duplex (may
                  only be half duplex). If autonegotiations does not occur, the default
                  behavior is to use forced half-duplex.

                  You are right, though, that the wrong negotiations will cause all sorts
                  of errors (and obviously collisions), which would cause excessive
                  retransmissions and thus lower throughput.

                  Most people don't have routers; they are called broadband routers but
                  they are nothing more than a network switch connected to some ARM or
                  equivalent processor for filtering and NAT to the WAN port.

                  In regards to cabling, to ensure you're using the right kind of cable,
                  you can do the following:

                  Holding the cable in your hand with the tab sticking down and the the
                  RJ45 connector pointing away from you as if you were going to plug it
                  into a jack, pin 1 is the leftmost wire on the RJ45 connector. Check
                  that the wires for pins 1 and 2 are opposite colors. I.e., if pin 1 is
                  white with orange stripe, pin 2 should be orange with white stripe. Do
                  the same for pins 3 and 6. If this is fine on both ends, then your
                  cable is fine. I have seen some RJ45 connected cables made for digital
                  phones that don't require the CAT5 / T568B (I think) wiring
                  specification. It will work for 10Mbps but at 100Mbps it causes an
                  excessive amount of crosstalk that can mess up a lot of ethernet
                  switches and hubs. I have seen it for myself.

                  Hope that helps.

                  Regards,
                  -Rob
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