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Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

Eleas Malamas
Occasional Contributor

Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

Hello everyone,
I am interested in increasing the networking
speed of my HP9000/800/D390 server under HP-UX 10.20. Currently the system has the built-in Lan 10-BaseT card but my organization is heavily dependent on distributed applications that require faster network communication.
I have the following questions:
1. Are there network cards at 10/100MBps that are compatible with the system of reference?
2. Is there any documentation regarding such installations/modifications to the server machine?
3. Is there an alternative (easier/more cost effective than the one suggested in 1. and 2. above) method to increase the networking speed of the server?
Pete Randall
Outstanding Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

Partsurfer ( http://partsurfer.hp.com ) lists the following LAN cards for the D390:

A3402A 10/100VG LAN single port EISA Ethernet network interface card
A3591A 1000Base-T HSC Fiber Channel (FC) network interface adapter - Has SC connectors
A3658A 100Base-T LAN EISA Ethernet network interface card


Steven E. Protter
Exalted Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390


The fasteset LAN card this server supports is 100 BaseT full duplex. The add in card costs $100 or so from a re-seller and is your best bet for improving network speed.

These systems will also take fiber channel based HBA cards, I had a few in my D class boxes in the US. Mine were connected to fabric, but they can with a different part number be connected to copper. That would give you 1000 BaseT speeds.

The problem may be getting drivers for 10.20. I ran mine on 11.00 and am not sure drivers are available for 10.20

Steven E Protter
Owner of ISN Corporation
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Acclaimed Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390


the card

"A3402A 10/100VG LAN single port EISA Ethernet network interface card"

is a bad option, because it is only compatible to other "100VG" (voice grade) components. For "normal" ethernet connections on this card is able to do 10Mb only.

For reference documentation for a specific card see http://docs.hp.com -> I/O Cards and Networking Software

Hope this helps!

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Steve Lewis
Honored Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

The D class also supported 1000base-SX cards and FDDI cards (100Mbits).

Honored Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

I beleive this is the installation/configuration manual for the A3658A card

Marcel Burggraeve
Trusted Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

There are two other interfaces which you can use as well, both are HSC.
J3515A : dualport 100Base-T
J3516A : singleport 100Base-T

Installing the interface isn't that hard.
Loosen the three screws on the left front side and you can remove the left side panel.
Remove the SCSI cable from the SCSI interface and remember which it was connected to if you have several.
Now you can remove the plate and install the interface.

Place the application CD in your CDrom ( I think the driver is on the first one of the set ), mount it to eg /SD_CDROM and type swinstall -s /SD_CDROM
Highlight the driver with the spacebar ( same name as the interface ) and choose install from the action menu.
Jesse Dougherty
Honored Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

Hi Eleas, you can get a 1000Base-SX (A4925A) network card on your D390 running 10.20. Its an easy install and these card sell for around $400.00 in the used market. I attached a pic of one and an overview.

Hope this helps

Cypress Technology Inc
Jesse Dougherty
Honored Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

A4925A overview attachment
rick jones
Honored Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

Keep in mind that neither 100BT nor Gigabit, as fundamental link technologies, do _anything_ to make data transfer any easier on the host. It takes just as many CPU cycles to transfer a KB through them as it does through your existing 10Base-T connection.

So, in setting your expectations, you should see how much idle CPU you have in your current setup and use that as a gauge for just how much faster you _might_ see things go.

Also, small packet latency (eg netperf TCP_RR) is bound more by the path length in the stack than it is by bitrate on the wire - although a couple of orders of magnitude change in the bitrate will make some difference.

To achieve higher speed, you may need/want to upgrade from the obsolete OS and HW combination to something considerably newer. A D390 could be quite comfortably replaced by a wide range of both used and new HP 9000's and Integrity servers. An rp3400 series comes to mind in the HP 9000 space, an rx1620 or an rx2660 in the Integrity space - each new servers.

In the older hardware space, you could consider an rp2400 (A500).
there is no rest for the wicked yet the virtuous have no pillows
Ralf Seefeldt
Valued Contributor

Re: Faster Ethernet card on HP9000/800/D390

Hello Eleas,

let's start with the easy questions:

2) If 1 is true, 2 will devinitely be true, too. Hm, At least, now you know, that you do not have to waste time on that question.

3) If the network itself is heavy used, it may help to separate the server, using an switch or even a router. however, this would complicate your networkdesign and possibly create other problems. It should only be a temporary solution. The only "real" solution, I can think of is adding a 2nd, faster lancard.

1) there should be a DEC 21140 Fast Ethernet controller. The HP The A4925A card should even support GB ethernet, if I am not wrong.
Another 100 Card is :
Hardware Information:
HW Path : 10/12/1/0 NMID : 5
MAC : 0x00108318CFEA HW State: UP
Desc : PCI(10110009) -- Built-in #1

IP Information:
IP addr : SW State: UP
Netmask : ffffff00 Ipkts : 11277155
Broadcast: Opkts : 17881588
MTU : 1500

Driver Information:
Driver : btlan4
Type : 100BT
Version : btlan4.c GSC 100BT Patch: PHNE_15781/15414 (10.20) PHNE_15415 (11

Technology Specific:
Speed/Duplex = 100 Full-Duplex