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Etherlite Troubleshooting Guide

What follows are some basic steps to help you troubleshoot Etherlite issues. The guidance is presented in an ordered format, which will hopefully assist you getting to the bottom of things.  The most important thing to keep in mind is to troubleshoot the simple things such as physical connections first (power, cables, etc.), then Etherlite configuration, and eventually work your way up to Realport driver level.

Physical Connections:

Check all physical connections to your Etherlite.  The power must be plugged into the AC outlet, and the Etherlite end of the power supply cord should securely insert into the Etherlite with a noticeable "click".  If the Etherlite end of the cable has difficulty staying clicked into place, it may mean the internal spring which locks-in the power cable is weak, and the Etherlite unit should be sent in for RMA.

LED Indicators:

What is the status of the LEDs on your Etherlite? The LINK LED should be lit solid, indicating a solid connection into the LAN network via your Ethernet cable.  Beyond verifying the Ethernet cable is plugged in (see Physical Connections), LAN/network issues are typically outside the scope of this document and should be resolved with the LAN Administrator before returning to this Troubleshooting Guide.

The ON LED has a number of different meanings.  Initially, the ON LED should flicker momentarily when the Etherlite is first powered on.  After a moment, the ON LED should lock in solid, indicating that the Etherlite either has a stored/static IP address internally, or that the DHCP server on the local network has served the Etherlite an IP address.  If the ON LED just keeps flickering, see the next section for information on how to store an IP address on the Etherlite if needed.  If the Etherlite ON LED flickers in a pattern, check the EtherLite LED indicator information article for further information:

Giving the Etherlite an IP Address:

By default, the Etherlite is enabled as a DHCP client.  This allows the Etherlite to be served an IP address by the DHCP server on the network, which is a common way that most networks are setup.  If you need to configure and store a Static IP address on your Etherlite, the usual method is via the DgIpServ utility for Unix or Windows, or by using the built-in commandline interface known as the Etherlite Boot Console.

See the following related articles for specific information on each of these methods:

DgIpServ method:

How to use the DgIpServ utility to assign an IP address to an EtherLite in Windows
DgIpServ for Windows Troubleshooting Tips
EtherLite dgipserv HOWTO guide - Unix version
What happens during a DgIpServ session?

Etherlite Boot Console method:

Etherlite Boot Console
EtherLite Power LED is out.

Verifying the Network path from end to end:

The Etherlite should now have a known IP address, whether it be static or DHCP assigned.  The Etherlite has no built-in Terminal Server functionality, and therefore requires that a driver connect to the Etherlite hardware over the IP network.  Once the driver-hardware connection is made, the Etherlite Realport driver will create usable comm ports on your server.

From the host server where you intend on installing the Etherlite driver, try pinging the known IP address of the Etherlite.  If you can ping the Etherlite's IP address from the server, that verifies the network layer, and the driver shouldn't have a problem connecting to the Etherlite at that IP address through the same route.  If multiple Etherlites are being installed, insure that you can ping the IP address of each Etherlite successfully, and that none of the IP addresses are used more than once on the network.  If you can not ping an Etherlite, re-check all the steps above and verify the network itself, or enlist the aid of your LAN Administrator to assist you with troubleshooting network issues.

Once the Etherlite(s) can be pinged, the next step is to see if not-so-basic network services can run between Host Server and Etherlite. If you have a Windows Host Server, you can use the Verlog utility; if using a Unix or Linux server, the rlogin utility can be used.

From rlogin (unix) or verlog.exe (windows), establish a connection to your Etherlite's IP address. Once successfully connected, you should see the "?" Etherlite prompt. Check the firmware level in use at HOW TO: Determine Firmware Version Level on EtherLite Products.  At this point, it would be a good idea to discuss EtherLite Driver and Firmware Compatibility. The bottom line is that the FAS and Realport drivers/firmwares are incompatible with each other, and that only the Realport driver/firmware is supported by Digi (FAS driver/firmware is end-of-lifed, and are no longer supported). If you can not connect to the Etherlite with rlogin/verlog, it may indicate that the Etherlite is using an IP address already in use on the network. Power the Etherlite off and try pinging that same IP address. Can you still ping it? If so, your Etherlite has a duplicate IP address to something else on the network and will need to be resolved before continuing.

As for the two types of Etherlite driver/firmware, they work similar to each other with the exception that the FAS driver/firmware uses TCP port 10001, whereas Realport uses TCP port 771. You can use rlogin/verlog to find out HOW TO: Detect whether your Etherlite has the FAS or Realport driver firmware loaded using rlogin or verlog.exe

If the TCP socket connection (port 771 or 10001) is being made to the Etherlite, useable comm port devices on your Windows Host Server should have been created.

On a Unix system you can use command "stty -a < /dev/ttydevice" to determine whether devices exist. If you get a good output from that command, the device exists and should be useable.

You can make a similar determination on a Windows system by attempting to open any Realport com port with a terminal emulation program such as Windows Hyperterm, putty, etc.   If the stty command (Unix/Linux) or Hyperterm (Microsoft Windows versions) open hangs or you get an error message, the error response itself is typically informative as to what is causing the error whether it be a bad or incompatible driver install.

If the stty command or port open are successful, you can use a loopback plug to find out if you can echo data through the port. To do this with Hyperterm or putty, simply insert the loopback plug, open the corresponding comm port for the physical port you inserted the Loopback Plug into, then start typing - what you type on the keyboard should be echoed through the serial port and loopback plug back to your screen.  Basic loopback testing in UNIX is one way of doing things on a Unix system.  If the loopback test passes but you're unable to pass data with a serial device plugged into the Etherlite's serial port, the Etherlite Signal and Pinout Information article can be consulted to verify pinout info, or the Cabling link under any Etherlite product on the Support website.

Last updated: Jun 05, 2019

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