I saw that firmware update, but as my board has a 2919 date code, and the link/activity LEDs work, I deduced that my board was not affected by that bug.
I’ll try it anyway and see if it does anything.
I have found that in rtl_eeprom.c(not at pc so that file name might be mis spelled), the magic number check fails when testing the eeprom. The value read is 0x0000 instead of the expected value. I assume that it fails to read, returns zero and the driver assumes “no eeprom”.
I will try to follow the trail back further, but the eeprom read calls appear to be some kind of system hooks or something strange, if I recall correctly.