Mac networking problem

I’ve been having problems in the last week or two with my iMac losing its network connection. It’s the built-in Ethernet connection, which I have manually configured to give me a consistent IP number within the local network. I don’t know how to restart the connection, so I’ve rebooted the machine the 3-4 times it’s happened. (In Linux, I’d run the networking rc script and probably save myself a reboot.)

The /var/log/system.log file is littered with lines that look like this:

Apr 23 03:16:48 malMini configd[38]: bootp_session_transmit:
bpf_write(en4) failed: No buffer space available (55)
Apr 23 03:16:48 malMini configd[38]: DHCP en4: INIT transmit failed

The DHCP part puzzled me for a bit, because I’m not using DHCP, but I soon realized that my main Ethernet connection—what I think of as the Ethernet connection—is en0, not en4. The en4 connection is some sort of fake connection created by Parallels.

A Google search on some of the phrases in that message led me to this page, which suggests that the problem is some sort of Bluetooth/network interface added by Apple to the 10.4.9 update. I turned off that interface—it’s called “Bluetooth PAN”—this morning, using the Network pane of System Preferences. It’s too early to tell if that change will fix the problem, but I’ll keep an eye on it.

Update 5/7/07 No network drops in the two weeks since I turned off the Bluetooth PAN interface.