My Asus P5WDG2 WS Professional motherboard comes with two Marvell gigiabit LAN ports, which allows the user to run the Virtual Cable Tester (VCT) control panel/application from Marvell.
The thing is, I can’t figure out the proper way to use it! I would have thought that you just plug the cable to be tested into both ports and run the app. But it doesn’t work that way! The instuctions say: “A test can be performed only if the corresponding network controller does not have a link up.”
The thing is, if you connect the cable to both ports that way, you DO have a link up! So how on Bob’s Earth are you supposed to use this thing? How do you connect the cable yet keep the link down?
I need an answer as soon as possible, as I’m right in the middle of installing someone’s networking system and I need to get this working right away…
Marvell’s website has a video. But it looks like you need a switch.
Thanks for the link, but I’m afraid it didn’t help. For one thing, it showed a very different app than the one I downloaded from Asus and also from Marvell. For another, the VCT is supposed to be capable of much more than just detecting breaks, shorts, and impedance mismatching. It’s also capable of determining which category the Ehternet cable is: Cat 5, Cat5e, or Cat 6. Too many of my cables aren’t properly labeled and it makes a huge difference.
More than anything else, though, what it didn’t show me is how to actually use the software. Watching a tech tell a user to click on a button to test a cable that’s already disconnected is hardly helpful. I need to know how to use the many other features as well.
But again, I appreciate your attempt to help out…
Well, I’ve played with it enough to solve my previous issue, but now I’m presented with the next problem:
One of the things I understand it’s supposed to be able to do is report the speed capacity of the cable being tested: 10 / 100 / 1000 for 10 mbit, 100mbit and 1 gig respectively. But no matter what cable I put in – even those clearly marked Cat 5 – it ALWAYS reports 1000, implying (it seems to me) that it merely reports the speed setting of the connected device, in every case reporting 1000 because both these ethernet ports are capable of gigabit speeds!
Does anyone know if there any way to do what I want, which is to determine cable category (since too many of my cables aren’t properly marked)?
It may just be that you don’t have any crappy cables. I don’t think that I’ve ever found a cable that would only work at 10base-T or 100base-T. They either work at 1000base-T or they are so screwed up that they don’t work with anything. If you really need to classify the cables, you’ll need a real cable tester.