Invisible Software

Error 3084 When Using DEC 21140-Based PCI Ethernet


This document describes a problem that may occur when attempting to run Adapter Independent Invisible LAN for DOS and Windows 3.X, using new models of DEC 21140-based PCI Ethernet boards.

Problem Description

When using Adapter Independent Invisible LAN for DOS and Windows 3.X, using a PCI Ethernet board based on the DEC 21140 controller chip, you may get the following error message when starting TransBIOS:

3084 Network: Invalid Ethernet address ROM format

The problem typically occurs with boards manufactured in 1998 or later.


The DEC 21140 is a 10/100 Mbps Ethernet controller chip. Many manufacturers use the DEC 21140 to make Ethernet boards that can run at either 10 Mbps or 100 Mbps.

In late 1997 or early 1998, many manufactures switched to a new type of media interface chip, called an "MII". (The media interface chip is not the 21140; it is one of the other chips on the board.) Prior to version 4.00K, the Invisible LAN drivers did not support MII chips.

If you try to use the old Invisible LAN drivers on a board with an MII chip, you will get the error message "3084 Network: Invalid Ethernet address ROM format".


To solve the problem, you need to install updated Invisible LAN drivers. Proceed as follows:

  1. Click here to download DECDRV.ZIP. After downloading, unzip the file.
  2. Copy the following updated driver files into your C:\NET30 directory:

  3. Type NET30 to start the network. With the new drivers installed, the network should operate normally.


These new drivers are already included in Invisible LAN version 4.00K or later. If you have version 4.00K or later, there is no need to install these new drivers.

You can download the current version of Invisible LAN for free from our Software Products section.

These new drivers are only used with the DOS or Windows 3.X version of Invisible LAN. If you are using Windows 95, there is no need for these drivers. Just use the appropriate Windows 95 driver for your network card.

If the Problem Still Occurs

If you have installed these new drivers (or if you are running Invisible LAN 4.00K or later), and the "3084" error message still occurs, it means that Invisible LAN can't understand the information stored in the ROM chip on the Ethernet board. In this case, there is nothing you can do except get an Ethernet board from a different manufacturer.


Notices: Copyright 1998 by Invisible Software, Inc. Invisible Software and InvisibleLAN are trademarks of Invisible Software, Inc. Other trademarks are the property of their respective holders.

This document was prepared on 03/01/98, and was believed to be accurate as of that date. Procedures, specifications, and compatibility may change without notice, and therefore this document may be out-of-date and/or inapplicable to current product versions. Invisible Software provides this document "AS IS" and without warranty of any kind. Under no circumstances shall this document be construed as creating or expanding any warranty of product performance.


Go back to Support FAQ.