ARP and Broadcast Packets Missing

Problem: A Linux box with Debian 9 (kernel 4.9) on a HP server with Intel i40e (X710) network cards, is not reachable from neighbor machines, because ARP does not work.

Discussion: while testing with tcpdump ARP worked, but later ARP stopped working again. When tcpdump is used with “-p” (non promiscuous mode) you can see the problem. The server does not receive any broadcasts. Which means neighbors can not find the machine with ARP. Outgoing ARP does work though because ARP responses are not sent to broadcast the address (ff:ff:ff:ff:ff:ff).

Solution: A quick fix was to use “ifconfig eth0 promisc”. In this mode broadcasts are received and ARP is working. A better fix is to upgrade the Linux kernel to Debian 9 backports (4.19) or probably upgrade to Debian 10.

Versions: Debian 9 kernel 4.9 intel driver: 2.3.2-k intel firmware: 6.00 0x800034ea 18.3.6

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