Network problems?

Has anyone had any problems when starting multiple embedded processors
at the same time?

I have 8 TB486 embedded computers with 10-MBit ethernet and onboard flash
memory, running the Net.crys8900 driver and automap which all start up at the
same time. Almost every time atleast one of the units doesn’t appear on the
network. A test program that flashes some front panel LEDs indicates that the
unit cannot see the network.

The documentation for the Net.crys8900 driver says that it gives up if it
can’t connect to a remote node after seven attempts. Could this be the

I also tried connecting a keyboard/monitor to one of the units but it
never failed, not until I removed the monitor!

A solution that works is to add a short delay (node number mod 10) which
appears to fix it but I would like any suggestions as to what else it could