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Microsoft KB Archive/103974

From BetaArchive Wiki

Article ID: 103974

Article Last Modified on 10/31/2006

This article was previously published under Q103974


Several conditions can cause a token ring Sniffer to report that a frame has "Bad FC/AR Flags." This article discusses the most probable ones.


A token ring frame contains several fields used to control the frame itself. The last of these fields--the end of frame sequence (EFS)--contains two bytes, the second of which--the frame status (FS)--is the most probable source of the error message. The FS looks like this:

    A C 0 0 A C 0 0

where: A = 1 if the destination address was recognized
A = 0 if the destination address was not recognized
C = 1 if frame was copied (accepted at least at the MAC level for processing)
C = 0 if frame was not copied


ONE: The 1s and 0s don't match. For example, if the FS is:

    1 0 0 0 0 1 0 0

   (A C 0 0 A C 0 0)

it is considered in error, because the first A (1) says the destination address is recognized, and the second (0) says it is not. The C's also do not match.

TWO: Some of the 0's are 1's. For example, if the FS is:

    1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0

the third bit is a 1 and it should be a zero.

If your Sniffer trace can display the FS, check it for either of these conditions. If you find one of them, the most probable cause is hardware, especially if only one machine is returning the error message. Hardware does not necessarily mean the network interface card (NIC), but the card is a good place to start. If it is connected through UTP, check the connection between the card's DB-9 and the UTP cable. This device sometimes causes errors, although when it does you normally see network problems in other parts of the frame.


Token rings use Manchester encoding, and you may be getting a J or a K (non-data symbols) in the FS.


If you are running across bridges, you might have a MAXTU mismatch between your machines and bridges.


Finally, you could be running into a token ring timing phenomenon called jitter, although it normally shows up in numerous frames, not just one. Around 1990, a TI chipset popular with OEMs for token ring cards was prone to jitter. The problems were resolved but they surface from time to time. Check the hardware.

Additional query words: adapter 2.00 2.10 2.10a 2.20 2.0 2.1 2.1a 2.2

Keywords: KB103974