August 2010 Archives

The Moving Ethernet Interface

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I've experienced the phenomenon of a moving Ethernet interface more than twice on more than two Linux distributions. Of course, since they are both using the same kernel, it is somewhat understandable. What is not immediately understandable is how each of those successive distros choose to address or solve the problem.

Since one of the distros was proprietary, I solved the problem with a second CAT5 patch cable to the common core switch. On RHEL, this is easy enough to solve, but at the moment I can't remember how I did it.  On Debian, the following resource was useful: http://www.mail-archive.com/debian-bugs-dist@lists.debian.org/msg640241.html. Basically, go into /etc/udev/rules.d/70-resistent-net.rules and look for your ethernet card entries. In my case, I looked for eth3 since eth0's MAC Address was in a physically identical server that I swapped my server out for. When the new MAC Address was detected on eth0, udev decided that it should use eth3 since eth0 might come back. Nice thought, but since I'd swapped the entire chassis, eth1 should have changed as well. Yet that didn't quite seem to happen.

Change eth3 to eth0, remove original eth0 line, reboot... done.

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