Networking Connectivity
Intel® Boot Agent
Undocumented Settings for the Intel® Boot Agent

This information is presented as a customer convenience only. It is meant solely for experienced network administrators and other computer professionals.

The following parameters and settings are not documented in the general user guides due to the fact that improper use, or use in some network environments, might cause negative impact to computer or network operation.

Do not attempt to use any of these settings unless you fully understand the possible ramifications. We recommend testing these changes in a non-production environment until you are satisfied that they will serve your needs and will not negatively affect your network.

Intel® Boot Agent undocumented settings

Continuous retry mode

In a scenario where both PXE client and server are booting at the same time (such as after a data center power failure), it is not uncommon for the client, while attempting to connect to the server, to timeout as the server is still booting. Intel® Boot Agent now supports a continuous retry option that will continually attempt to connect to the server until the server becomes available. This option is set using the BOOTUTIL utility.

  • BOOTUTIL -setretry (Continuous retry enabled.)
  • BOOTUTIL -clearretry (Continuous retry disabled.)

Remember that, if this option is enabled, the system boot process will never progress past the Intel Boot Agent. The device boot order is set in the BIOS, which controls the order in which the system will interrogate devices in an attempt to find a boot loader. With this option set, once the system reaches the Intel Boot Agent in the boot order, the boot agent will retry indefinitely, unless it finds a network boot device or is manually interrupted.

Force speed and duplex

Setting this parameter with the BOOTUTIL utility will force the speed to either 10MB full or half duplex, or 100MB full or half duplex. These parameters are valid for both 10/100 and 10/100/1000 adapters. Gigabit speed is always full duplex and can only be autonegotiated, so the boot agent adapter must be set to autonegotiate (default setting) to achieve gigabit speed.

BOOTUTIL -autoneg (Sets to autonegotiate, disables forcing speed and duplex)
BOOTUTIL -100F (Forces using 100MbS Full duplex)
BOOTUTIL -100H (Forces using 100MbS Half duplex)
BOOTUTIL -10F (Forces using 10MbS Full duplex)
BOOTUTIL -10H (Forces using 10MbS Half duplex)

Using this function to force the boot agent to any mode other than autonegotiate will prevent it from properly attaching to any link partner running in a mode other than the mode to which you forced the boot agent. If you force the boot agent speed and duplex, you must make sure that the link partner is forced to, or is only capable of, the matching setting.

Related topics
How to Update Intel® Boot Agent

This applies to:

Intel® Boot Agent
Intel® Ethernet Converged Network Adapter X520 Series
Intel® Ethernet Server Adapter I210-T1
Intel® PRO/100 M Desktop Adapter
Intel® PRO/100 S Desktop Adapter
Intel® PRO/100 S Dual Port Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/100 S Management Adapter
Intel® PRO/100 S Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/100+ Adapter
Intel® PRO/100+ Management Adapter
Intel® PRO/100+ Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 MF Dual Port Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 MF Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 MF Server Adapter (LX)
Intel® PRO/1000 MT Desktop Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 MT Dual Port Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 MT Quad Port Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 MT Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 T Desktop Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 XF Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 XT Low Profile Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/1000 XT Server Adapter
Intel® PRO/100B Adapter

Solution ID: CS-009350
Last Modified: 17-Nov-2014
Date Created: 11-Feb-2004
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