Linux and the Lite-On 82c168 "PNIC" Chip

This page contains information on using Linux with the Lite-On PNIC 82c168 PCI Network Interface Controller, as used on the newer LinkSys Fast Ethernet adapters. The master copy of this page resides on the CESDIS WWW server.

The PNIC driver has been merged with the standard "Tulip" driver. While the Tulip driver has been long been in the kernel, the PNIC updates are in version 0.83 and later. See the Tulip driver page for more information.

The Tulip driver development was supported by the Beowulf cluster project at CESDIS. For Beowulf-specific information, read the Beowulf project description.

Driver Technical Log

The PNIC chip uses a register interface very similar to that of the Digital Tulip chip series.

The modifications to the Tulip driver are:

Recognizing the vendor and device ID
The PNIC uses vendor ID 0x11AD and device ID 0x0002
Reading the EEPROM
the setting of CSR6 is similar to the 21140
the use of the general purpose pin register, CSR12, is unique
a new register at offset 0xB8 controls the internal transceiver
the default setting does not enable NWay autonegotiation.

Usage instructions

See the Digital Tulip driver page.


Support is handled through the Tulip mailing lists. See the Tulip driver page (above) for the addresses.

Diagnotic program

A diagnostic program is available to examine the device registers, EEPROM values, and MII transceiver management registers.


None yet.

Linux Network Drivers Page
CESDIS is located at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt MD.
Author:Donald Becker,