Solaris 8 (Intel Platform Edition) Device Configuration Guide

3Com EtherLink III (3C589) PC Card

Solaris Device Driver:


Device Type:

Network (Ethernet) 


3Com EtherLink III (3C589) 

Bus Type:

PC Card 

Preconfiguration Information

Known Problems and Limitations

Network services are automatically started when the system is booted. These services are not started when a network interface is added or shut down after the system has been brought up.

Configuration Procedure

Initial Installation and Configuration

  1. Install the Solaris software.

  2. Boot the system.

  3. Insert the 3Com EtherLink III PC Card device.

Identifying an Unrecognized Card

If you insert a 3C589 card and it isn't recognized (no special files created), use the prtconf command to try to identify the problem.

  1. Become root.

  2. Run the prtconf -D command to see if your 3C589 card is recognized.

    A recognized device will appear in the prtconf output. For example:

    # prtconf -D
    .  .  .
    pcic, instance #0 (driver name: pcic)        
    	.  .  .
    	network, instance #0 (driver name: pcelx)
  3. If pcelx does not appear in the prtconf output, there is a problem with the PC Card adapter configuration or with the hardware. Check to see whether the problem is with the card or the adapter by trying to use the card on another machine and by seeing if it works on the same machine using DOS.

Configuring Two or More Cards

Because the 3C589 card is not supported during Solaris installation, you must update network configuration files before one can be used as a network interface.

  1. Create a /etc/hostname.pcelx# file (where # is a socket number) to specify the host name to be associated with this interface.

  2. Add an IP address for the new host name to the file /etc/inet/hosts.

  3. Ensure that the associated network is listed in /etc/inet/netmasks.

  4. Ensure that the Name Service Switch /etc/nsswitch.conf configuration file includes the network and local services you need.

  5. Reboot the system.

    Note -

    This process is described in System Administration Guide, Volume 3.

Special Files

Device naming in /dev follows standard LAN device naming except that the PPA (physical point of attachment) unit number is the socket where the card resides, not the instance. That is, for the pcelx driver, /dev/pcelx0 (or PPA 0 of /dev/pcelx) is the card in socket 0, while a card in socket 1 is /dev/pcelx1 (or PPA 1 of /dev/pcelx). See the pcelx(7D) man page.


If you remove the 3C589 card, any information you send is discarded, and no error messages are given.

When you reinsert the card in the same socket, the device operates normally. The behavior is similar to temporarily disconnecting the device from the network.