General Description

The Realtek RTL8156AP-CG 10/100/1000M/2.5G Ethernet controller combines a four-speed IEEE 802.3 compatible Media Access Controller (MAC) with a four-speed Ethernet transceiver, USB 3.0 bus controller, and embedded memory. With state-of-the-art DSP technology and mixed-mode signal technology, the RTL8156AP offers high-speed transmission over CAT 5e UTP cable or CAT 3 UTP (10Mbps only) cable. Functions such as Crossover Detection and Auto-Correction, polarity correction, MDI swap, adaptive equalization, cross-talk cancellation, echo cancellation, timing recovery, RFI protection, thermal management, loopback diagnostic capability, and error correction are implemented to provide robust transmission and reception capabilities. The RTL8156AP features embedded One-Time-Programmable (OTP) memory that can replace the external EEPROM (93C46/93C56/93C66).

The RTL8156AP features USB 3.0 to provide higher bandwidth and improved protocols for data exchange between the host and the device. USB 3.0 also offers more advanced power management features for energy saving. The RTL8156AP is compatible with the IEEE 802.3u specification for 10/100Mbps Ethernet, the IEEE 802.3ab specification for 1000Mbps Ethernet, and the IEEE 802.3bz specification for 2500Mbps Ethernet.

Advanced Configuration Power management Interface (ACPI)—power management for modern operating systems that are capable of Operating System-directed Power Management (OSPM)—is supported to achieve the most efficient power management possible. In addition to the ACPI feature, remote wake-up (including AMD Magic Packet and Microsoft Wake-Up Frame) is supported in both ACPI and APM (Advanced Power Management) environments.

The RTL8156AP supports Microsoft Wake Packet Detection (WPD) to provide Wake-Up Frame information to the OS, e.g., PatternID, OriginalPacketSize, SavedPacketSize, SavedPacketOffset, etc. WPD helps prevent unwanted/unauthorized wake-up of a sleeping computer.

The RTL8156AP supports ‘RealWoW!’ technology to enable remote wake-up of a sleeping PC through the Internet. This feature allows PCs to reduce power consumption by remaining in low power sleeping state until needed.

Note: The ‘RealWoW!’ service requires registration on first time use.

The RTL8156AP supports Protocol offload. It offloads some of the most common protocols to NIC hardware in order to prevent spurious wake-up and further reduce power consumption. The RTL8156AP can offload ARP (IPv4) and NS (IPv6) protocols while in the D3 power saving state.

The RTL8156AP supports the ECMA (European Computer Manufacturers Association) proxy for sleeping hosts standard. The standard specifies maintenance of network connectivity and presence via proxies in order to extend the sleep duration of higher-powered hosts. It handles some network tasks on behalf of the host, allowing the host to remain in sleep mode for longer periods. Required and optional behavior of an operating proxy includes generating reply packets, ignoring packets, and waking the host.

Alert Specification Format (ASF 2.0) is supported to provide system manageability in OS-absent environments. The ASF defines remote control and alerting interfaces that serve managed PCs in OS-absent states. With the ASF capability, we are able to minimize on-site IT maintenance, to improve system availability, and also to control power management remotely.

The Desktop and mobile Architecture for System Hardware (DASH) initiative is a suite of specifications that takes full advantage of the DMTF’s Web Services for Management (WS-Management) specification – delivering standards-based Web service remote management for desktop and mobile client systems.

The RTL8156AP supports IEEE 802.3az-2010, also known as Energy Efficient Ethernet (EEE). IEEE 802.3az-2010 operates with the IEEE 802.3 Media Access Control (MAC) Sublayer to support operation in Low Power Idle mode. When the Ethernet network is in low link utilization, EEE allows systems on both sides of the link to save power.

The RTL8156AP is compatible with Microsoft NDIS5, NDIS6 (IPv4, IPv6, TCP, UDP) Checksum and Segmentation Task-offload (Large send and Giant send) features, and supports IEEE 802.1P Layer 2 priority encoding and IEEE 802.1Q Virtual bridged Local Area Network (VLAN). The above features contribute to lowering CPU utilization, especially benefiting performance when in operation on a network server.

The RTL8156AP is suitable for multiple market segments and emerging applications, such as desktop, mobile, workstation, server, communications platforms, docking station, and embedded applications.



  • Integrated 10/100/1000M/2.5G transceiver
  • Supports 2.5G and 1G Lite mode
  • Auto-Negotiation with Extended Next Page capability (XNP)
  • Compatible with NBASE-TTM Alliance PHY Specification
  • Supports pair swap/polarity/skew correction
  • Crossover Detection & Auto-Correction
  • Configurable MDI port ordering (MDI swap) for easy PCB layout
  • Supports USB 3.0 and 0
  • Supports CDC-ECM
  • Supports CDC-NCM
  • Supports LPM (Link Power Management), U1/U2/U3 at SuperSpeed, and L1/L2 at HighSpeed
  • Embedded OTP memory
  • Supports hardware CRC (Cyclic Redundancy Check) function
  • Transmit/Receive on-chip buffer support
  • Supports 25MHz Crystal or external Oscillator
  • Generate reference clock from Crystal
  • Supports power down/link down power saving
  • Supports Customizable LEDs
  • Controllable LED Blinking Frequency and Duty Cycle
  • Self-Loopback diagnostic capability
  • Thermal management
  • 128-pin LQFP ‘Green’ package
  • LAN disable/Link state with GPIO pin
  • Supports ECMA-393 ProxZzzy Standard for sleeping hosts (see Note 1)
  • Wake-On-LAN and ‘RealWoW!’ Technology (remote wake-up) support (see Note 1)
  • I2C Interface
  • SPI Flash Interface – supports auto-install driver
  • Supports WakeUp pin in on-board system
  • Supports NC-SI
  • Single/Dual MAC/IP support for DASH

Note 1: Select either RealWoW! or ECMA; only one feature can be active at a time.


  • Compatible with IEEE 802.3, IEEE 802.3u, IEEE 802.3ab
  • Supports IEEE 802.1P Layer 2 Priority Encoding
  • Supports IEEE 802.1Q VLAN tagging
  • Supports IEEE 802.3az (Energy Efficient Ethernet)
  • Supports IEEE 802.3bz (2.5GBASE-T)
  • Supports Full Duplex flow control (IEEE 802.3x)

Software Offload

  • Microsoft NDIS5, NDIS6 Checksum Offload (IPv4, IPv6, TCP, UDP) and Segmentation Task-offload (Large send v1 and Large send v2) support
  • Supports jumbo frame to 16K bytes
  • Supports Protocol Offload (ARP & NS)

Microsoft AOAC (Always On Always Connected)/Modern Standby

  • Supports 32-set 128-byte Wake-Up Frame pattern exact matching
  • Supports link change wake up
  • Supports Microsoft WPD (Wake Packet Detection)

Intel CPPM (Converged Platform Power Management)

  • Supports L1 with 3ms BESL (USB 2.0)
  • Dynamic LTM messaging (USB 3.0)
  • Supports U1/U2/U3 (USB 3.0)
  • Supports selective suspend


  • USB 10/100/1000M/2.5G Ethernet on Motherboard, Notebook, or Embedded systems