Problems with the Intel Network Cards and Teaming Software


Problem Description

After SP2 for Win2k3 installation the Intel teaming software stopped working. At that time it didn’t look like a big issue – the software reinstallation should have resolved the problem. However, the installation failed stating the the installed software cannot be updated and has to be uninstalled first. But it did not work even after the uninstallation. It saw the leftovers of the teaming software somewhere. Trying to uninstall it I went through many web sites, made several changes in registry, restarted the server a few times. Eventually I did that, installed the teaming software back but could not find any adapters to join the team. There was no any connection in Network Connections applet. None. Quick check in device manager showed that devices are over there but with the yellow exclamation points. I could not reinstall or update the drivers – any installation of any version of drivers failed. I could not delete the devices – Windows said that it needed them to boot the computer.

So, the server lost the connection to the network completely. The internet search brought nothing, the recommendations were just to delete devices or update drivers, which I already tried. I uninstalled SP2, uninstalled Symantec Antivirus (it has the connection to the Intel services), I ran the Windows repair. Nothing helped at all.

I found the solution only because I could not reinstall the server from scratch, it had a lot of unique and strange software and had to be fixed.

Solution

I cannot say that the solution I have found is the proper one. I have made so many changes that I’m not sure which one  or which combination of them eventually fixed the problem. However, it did.

What I have done:

  1. Found all the servers with the same network cards from Intel, using this Powershell command.
    Get-Content Servers_ALL.txt | foreach {$C = $_;write-host $C; Get-WMIObject win32_networkadapter -computer $C| foreach {if ($_.Name.Contains(“Intel“) -eq $True) {write-host (”   ” + $_.Name)}}}

    The Servers_ALL.txt file contains the list of server names.

  2. Selected one of them that had the same hardware and same version of OS. It became my donor server.
    HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{4D36E972-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002bE10318}
    HKLM\SOFTWARE\Intel
    HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Network\{4D36E972-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}
    HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\NetworkCards
  3. Exported the following registry keys from the donor server:
  4. With a flash memory stick brought all these .reg files to the damaged server.
  5. Exported the same registry keys for backup
  6. Imported the keys from donor server to the registry. For the Intel key I got the “Access denied” message, so I imported it in the safe mode.
  7. After restart I got my devices back with the proper drivers! But did not get any Local Area Connections
  8. I deleted the CONFIG value from the HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Network registry key and restarted the server. Do not ask me why, I was working hard for 14 hours to that moment and one of my feelings said “Delete it”.
  9. After restart I got the Local Area Connections! I set up one of them and checked out the IPCONFIG. The configuration was over there, however, I cannot ping anything, even the default gateway.
  10. I ran the Netsh command: Netsh int ip reset system and restarted the server. Did not help. But at least I reset the IP stack that in my situation should not have hurt anything.
  11. I check the list of clients, services and protocols in the Local Area Connection properties and reinstall Network Monitor Driver and Load Balancing. I did that because during the first investigation I noticed in the event log some warnings and errors related to these components. Restart again, who cares of yet another restart in such situation
  12. The network cards started working. They did.
  13. I created the team, installed and set everything back up and left the office. It took… 15 hours
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: