[solved] e1000e: probe of 0000:04:00.0 failed with error -2

Jan 11, 2018 under Linux Server

We recently had to solve a very strange issue with a server which has been running just fine for years but after a reboot had a non working network card.

Supermicro X7DBR-E

The server is SuperServer 6015B-T with a X7DBR-E Motherboard

Network Controllers is :
Intel® (ESB2/Gilgal) 82563EB Dual-Port Gigabit Ethernet Controller
Supports 10BASE-T, 100BASE-TX, and 1000BASE-T, RJ45 output
Intel® I/OAT support for fast, scaleable, and reliable networking

Logs (from /var/log/messages or dmesg |grep -e eth -e e1000 ) are the following:

e1000e: Intel(R) PRO/1000 Network Driver - 2.3.2-k
e1000e: Copyright(c) 1999 - 2014 Intel Corporation.
Interrupt Throttling Rate (ints/sec) set to dynamic conservative mode
e1000e: probe of 0000:04:00.0 failed with error -2

We did a lot of research and found few other complaining about

Some suggestions:

  • Update BIOS (usually is good to have latest version)
  • Boot with network cable unplug and connect after system is up
  • Use acpi=off on Linux boot loader (if no settings is presented in BIOS)
  • Update e1000e Driver from Intel (good to have latest version)
  • Try a live CD (just demo version without changing the disk) or try to install Windows and see if the network is recognized.

Working Solution:

Now in our case the server worked fine (we used latest Debian) and was stable. So nothing applied, apart of supposed physical damage of the Network card (two are present and both broken ?!)

We suspected the WOL (Wake on Lan) feature which has been used on these machines, since some time again the SAME type of configuration had the SAME issue. With other words this is second machine having the same issue. On first case we suspected MB and simple replaced. Note also that port led light indication didn’t work (no flash).

Now, disable in BIOS any wake on Lan (or boot from Lan ..) and from your Linux. In our case was /etc/network/interfaces
ethernet-wol g

Finally just stop and unplug the server from electricity for several minutes and then restart the machine. This trick worked magically for us.

This solution was also mentioned at Strange ethernet interface issue on new install

Hope it helps some others!

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