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Packets of Death

| Thursday, February 7, 2013
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Packets of death. I started calling them that because that’s exactly what they are.

Star2Star has a hardware OEM that has built the last two versions of our on-premise customer appliance. I’ll get more into this appliance and the magic it provides in another post. For now let’s focus on these killer packets.


Wow. Things just got weird.

The weirdness continued and I finally got to the point where I had to roll my sleeves up. I was lucky enough to find a very patient and helpful reseller in the field to stay on the phone with me for three hours while I collected data. This customer location, for some reason or another, could predictably bring down the ethernet controller with voice traffic on their network.

Let me elaborate on that for a second. When I say “bring down” an ethernet controller I mean BRING DOWN an ethernet controller. The system and ethernet interfaces would appear fine and then after a random amount of traffic the interface would report a hardware error (lost communication with PHY) and lose link. Literally the link lights on the switch and interface would go out. It was dead.

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