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Killer™ Gaming Network Card

Models M1 / K1

User’s Guide

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Overview:
The Killer™ NIC software suite installs several programs to help configure and maintain your
Killer NIC in addition to the basic driver system files which operate the card.

KillerTray.exe - This is your interface to access Killer features. After installing Killer’s
software package the icon will appear in your system tray.

You can right-click the tray icon to:

1. Change the state of LLR by selecting “LLR Game Mode” or “LLR App Mode”
OR
2. Access installed features, FNA programs or the configuration menu:

KillerConfig.exe – Killer Configuration is accessible from the Start Menu or via the KillerTray
icon. Configuration is installed “optimized” by default. Basic settings for the Killer’s LED lights
or advanced memory management options can be changed through Killer Configuration.

Killer Bandwidth Control – A feature which allows you to set different priorities for your
Internet traffic. (This is an optional feature which installs “disabled” by default).

Killer Firewall – A feature which allows your Killer NIC to act as a hardware firewall (this is an
optional feature which installs “off” by default).

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PortManager.exe – This is a background program that handles FNA Port management
communication between your FNA/feature software and the Killer’s hardware (this is accessed
automatically and you will not need to interact with it directly).

Selecting LLR Game Mode or App Mode:


LLR stands for Lag and Latency Reduction.

When LLR is configured to run in Game Mode, your NIC is optimized for gaming! LLR Game
Mode enables your Killer NIC to bypass the Windows® Network Stack, prioritize game data and
free up system resources.

When LLR is configured to run in App Mode, your Killer NIC is functioning as an optimized,
but “normal”, NIC. App Mode can be viewed as a ‘fail-safe’ mode that can be used to run
programs which cannot function in Game Mode or to troubleshoot any compatibility issues that
may occur for games in Game Mode

For example: programs like VPN clients require access to the Windows® Network Stack which
would be bypassed in game mode. So, depending on the types of programs you use, you would
switch between modes when needed.

Game and App Mode can be changed at any time by right clicking on your Killer Tray icon and
selecting a mode. It also appears in Killer Configuration.

Note: Other network adapters may not function properly with LLR Game Mode. It is
recommended that you disable all other network adapters if you wish to use LLR Game Mode.

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Killer Configuration
Killer Configuration has 3 modes: Auto, Normal and Advanced.

By default, Killer Configuration is installed ”Auto-Optimized” for your system. In this mode
your Killer NIC will automatically handle memory management.

In this mode it is also possible to configure Link Speed, Link Duplex, LED Control and
GameFirst.

Link Speed:
Auto = Auto-negotiates the fastest speed available. This is the recommended setting!
1000 = Forces gigabit (REQUIRES the link to support 1Gigabit or the NIC won’t work)
100 = Forces 100Megabit (REQUIRES 100Megabit link or the NIC won’t work)
10 = Forces 10Megabit (REQUIRES 10Megabit link or the NIC won’t work)

Link Duplex: (This setting only matters if 100 or 10 is selected in Link Speed)
Full Duplex = Forces the link to Full Duplex only
(e.g. the Ethernet cable is DEDICATED and TX and RX are not shared: and TX can
happen at the same time as RX).
Half-Duplex = Forces the link to Half Duplex only (the TX and RX cannot happen at the
same time, and the signal may be shared).

LED Control: (controls the light display on the Killer card)


Blink = the normal custom heartbeat pattern that varies based on network speed.
Steady = the LEDs on the card are on all the time.
Off = the LEDs on the card are turned off.

GameFirst: (UDP priority)


Enabled = turns on gaming packet prioritization for both inbound and outbound game
traffic.
Disabled = turns off packet prioritization.

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Killer Configuration “About” Tab
Visible from any of the 3 modes, the About tab displays your current software suite version; card
type, card ID, Diagnose button and the auto update option.

If you wish to be notified when a new driver is published, put a check in the “Automatically
check for updates” box.

Your Card ID is used to identify your specific card for registration and tech support.

The Diagnose button is a support tool that will generate a text file containing a variety of useful
information in the event that you need to contact tech support. Note: if you have pressed
“Diagnose” you will need to close the text file that opens before accessing Killer configuration
again (it will be in a paused, unusable state).

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Killer Configuration “Normal Mode”
“Normal memory manager mode” unlocks the sliders that allow you to change memory buffers
by group.

It is recommended that users only use this mode if they possess an understanding of operating
system memory management and networking.

Note: The ‘optimize’ button will reset the Killer NIC Control Panel to factory default buffer
settings.

Receive Buffers: Amount of Receive buffers (and memory footprint) in excess of normal to add
to focus more on networking performance (Normal+1% is default and has been optimized for
good overall performance/memory footprint balance).

Transmit Buffers: Amount of Transmit buffers (and memory footprint) in excess of normal to
focus more on networking performance (Normal+1% is default and has been optimized for good
overall performance/memory footprint balance).

Coalesce Buffers: Amount of Coalesce buffers (and memory footprint) in excess of normal to
add to focus more on networking performance (Normal+1% is default and has been optimized
for good overall performance/memory footprint balance).

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Killer Configuration “Advanced Mode”
Advanced mode allows micro management of individual memory buffers, use of promiscuous
mode and adds the “ping throttle” slider option.

It is recommended that users only use the “Advanced memory manager mode” if they possess
expertise in operating system memory management and networking.

Note: The ‘optimize’ button will reset the Killer NIC Control Panel to factory default memory
settings.

MAIN TAB
Promiscuous Mode:
Disabled = Ethernet packet filters on, device operates normally. (Default)
Enabled = Ethernet packet filters OFF: device receives from all MAC addresses.

Note: For security reasons the Promiscuous Mode setting will be disabled after a reboot.
You will need to enable it again each time you wish to use it.

1K/2K/64K Coalesce Buffers: Absolute number of coalesce buffers available for use when
number of host buffers exceeds the NIC or UDP limit.

Ping Throttle: Allows users to handicap their ping: increasing the latency by the indicated
amount. Fast is 0.00!

WARNING: increasing the ping of the Killer NIC will decrease network
performance. This can be used for competitive training under poor network
conditions; or to match machine speeds for fairness in LAN environments. For
normal game play where you want the fastest possible speed, it should remain at
0.

Note: in some online games, increasing the ping using this setting has a bigger effect than
intended; the user should ‘tweak’ their ping control in small amounts, then test in-game ping for
desired results when attempting to create a latency handicap.

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NIC TAB
Pool Buffers to Allocate: Absolute number of Pool buffers given to Killer to be used when a
packet is received from the wire in NIC mode (e.g. a non-UDP packet).

RX Completion Descriptors: Absolute number of RX Descriptors given to Killer to be used


when a packet is received from the wire in NIC mode (e.g. a non-UDP packet).

TX Completion Descriptors: Absolute number of TX Descriptors given to Killer to be used


when a packet is received from the wire in NIC mode (e.g. a non-UDP packet).

Max Frags for Coalesce: NIC MODE (non-UDP packets) When packets are TX from host: sets
the maximum number of fragments allowed to be passed to Killer per packet. (when number of
fragments is bigger than this number: Killer Driver will coalesce (copy) all the fragments to a
buffer of the appropriate size.

LLR TAB
RX Completion Descriptors: Absolute number of RX Descriptors given to Killer to be used
when a packet is received from the wire in LLR mode (e.g. for UDP packets).

TX Descriptors: Absolute number of transmit Descriptors given to Killer to be used when a


packet is to be sent on the wire in LLR mode (e.g. for UDP packets).

Max Frags for Coalesce: LLR Mode (UDP packets) When packets are transmitted from host:
sets the maximum number of fragments allowed to be passed to Killer per packet. (when
number of fragments is bigger than this number: Killer Driver will coalesce (copy) all the
fragments to a buffer of the appropriate size.

Optimal LLR Pipes: Maximum number of networks sockets that can be open simultaneously
without SEVERE performance degradation.

Number of Proactive 64K buffers: Number of Proactive 64K buffers for use in Receive
processing: increase when network application is sending lots of large UDP datagrams (not
needed for gaming/normal use).

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Killer Firewall:
Killer Firewall creates a hardware firewall running directly on your Killer NIC’s NPU (network
processing unit). This is a useful tool for keeping your system protected with less performance
impact than traditional firewalls. Note: Other firewalls should be disabled while using Killer
Firewall for best performance.

Alerts: Exception alerts will be made:


Per Application: will only wait for a request the first time a new application begins
opening ports. You will still see a balloon each time the program binds a new port, but
the port entry’s will be created for you automatically after the first one.

Per individual Port will wait for notification from you on every new port that is bound
by every program before creating or adding ports to an exception entry.

You can respond instantly by clicking on the alert (which will go away in a few seconds) or
ignore it and respond later if you see the flashing alert icon on your killer tray. This is passive by
design so it won’t interfere with running games.

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Exceptions: Creating and editing exceptions to meet your needs is simple:

Use the “Add” button to create new entries, “Edit” to change values in existing exceptions and
“Delete” to remove old ones you no longer need. Note: you can temporarily enable/disable an
individual exception entry by adding/removing a check mark in the list.

Ports: defines the range of ports you want to allow open (to define a single port you begin and
end with the same number)

Protocol: defines the type of data (TCP/UDP) you want to allow through that port

Specific IP: would allow data from only one IP source into the specified ports

Rule type: accept/block data on specific ports. In this way you can selectively choose some ports
open for a specific program while blocking others.

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Killer Bandwidth Control:
While the Killer’s drivers and configuration tools are designed to seamlessly speed up your game
performance, the Bandwidth Control feature allows you to take a step beyond this and set aside
the bandwidth used by individual programs.

Settings Tab:
To begin using bandwidth controls, first set your average internet connection speed:

With Bandwidth Control enabled, programs are added to the Priority and Bandwidth Tabs
automatically as they connect to the internet.

New Connections: You can choose if you want to be notified each time a program is added to
the list. Or simply let it be added under default settings for you to tweak later.

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Priority Tab: The easiest method to get some benefit from Bandwidth Control is to simply set
the priority of a program and let the Killer NIC auto-manage the amount of bandwidth it uses
based on your defined priority level. Note: Priority “1” is the highest.

You do not need to set bandwidth limits; simply setting the priority numbers will let Killer auto-
manage the bandwidth used. Note: the more accurate your average Internet speed on the settings
page, the more accurately Killer can auto-manage your bandwidth usage.

Bandwidth Tab: You can further manage by tweaking individual bandwidth caps for programs.
These limits work in addition to the priority setting.

Hint: Novice users should begin by only using the priority page and try to get their Internet
speed average as accurate as possible in settings. Leave the bandwidth tab alone until you are
prepared to spend time tweaking the settings for your needs.

Options (defaults): these settings can be used to define the priority and bandwidth of new
applications as they are automatically added to the list.

Reset All: Your fail-safe button to clear all programs from the lists (also deletes Internet speed
entry).

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Technical Support:
Bigfoot Networks technical support is available via live chat, inbound phone support, tech
support tickets, email and self help tools.

Tech Support URL: http://www.killernic.com/support/

Self Help: The Knowledgebase located in the support area of the website is the first place to
check for answers, as Bigfoot will always keep answers to the most common questions updated
here.

Live Chat: is available between the hours of 10:00AM – 7:00PM (central time zone), Monday
through Friday, and 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM (central time zone) Saturday and Sunday.

Click on the “Live Support” icon found at http://www.killernic.com/support

Live Chat creates a personal instant messenger style chat room between you and tech support
and is often the fastest, easiest method for resolving issues not already listed in the
knowledgebase files.

Phone Tech Support can be reached by dialing (512) 879-4181, option 1 and is available
between the hours of 10:00AM – 7:00PM (central time zone), Monday through Friday, and
12:00PM – 6:00PM (central time zone) Saturday and Sunday.

Submit a Ticket can be used to request support 24 hours a day. A support rep will respond
(usually within 24 to 48 hours) after investigating your issue or will request further information.

Email support: If the other methods are unavailable, you can also email
support@bigfootnetworks.com

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Common Troubleshooting Tips & Hints
CANNOT CONNECT TO INTERNET:
First verify that your network cable is plugged into the Ethernet port of the Killer NIC, and that
you are getting a link light. The Killer NIC does not broadcast network data to your “other”
network ports or USB ports. If you are not getting a link light, verify the other end of the cable
is secured in your modem/router, or try another cable if neither is lit.

OTHER NETWORK CARDS DO NOT WORK:


If you wish to use 2 network cards, you may need to switch to LLR App mode (using the Killer
Tray or Killer Config Tool). When LLR Game Mode is enabled, it is recommended that the
other NICs in the system be disabled.

KILLER DRIVER PROBLEMS:


If you are having problems with the Killer Drivers, ensure you are running the correct software
suite for your operating system. These can be found in the ‘downloads’ section of
http://www.killernic.com/support/. Windows 2000 and older is not supported.

KILLER LED’S NOT BLINKING or KILLER NOT DETECTED:


Power off the PC and reseat the card. Ensure that the Killer NIC is firmly seated into the PCI
slot, and securely fastened to the PC case. If you move the Killer NIC to another PCI slot, you
must re-run the Killer NIC installation software. Try reinstalling the Killer Drivers after
reseating the card.

BfLLR.dll “warnings” from security software:


This file is used to install a Layered Service Provider (LSP) into the Windows® Network Stack
to provide Network Stack bypass. Some virus scanners or spyware blockers may detect this file
as dangerous because it is ‘hooking’ into the network stack (and has access to all packets sent
and received). This is normal, and BfLLR.dll should NOT be removed or blocked by your
security software.

FIRMWARE OUT OF SYNC:


If a firmware warning is ever shown, indicating that your firmware does not match your driver:
First verify you have a Killer installed (you may have removed it or knocked it loose from the
PCI slot), and if it is installed and blinking, and clicking “yes” to the prompt has not solved the
issue, navigate to C:\Program Files\Bigfoot Networks\Killer Driver and run the file
KillerFlash.exe (You will need to reboot before the new firmware takes effect).

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Join the Killer NIC Online Forum Community
Located here: http://www.killernic.com/KillerForums/

Whether you have a question, want to gain access to our latest beta testing drivers or just want to
brag in our testimonials section, the Killer forums are your portal to other Killer NIC owners and
our way of interacting with customers as new features are developed.

So please feel free to drop in if you have a question or a testimonial to post!

Note: If you need tech support, Live Chat in the support area is much faster than waiting for
forum responses!

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