Assuming the cable is good (can that be verified?), I might suspect that the system isn't assigning sufficient resources for both ports to function. Typically the BIOS has that responsibly. If your BIOS is out of date, you might try updating to the latest. Also, just make sure you're running the latest NIC drivers (http://downloadcenter.intel.com/Default.aspx)
Hope that helps
Intel Corp. - Wired Networking
Product Support Engineer
Thanks for the reply. the cable has been tested by swapping the cables around on the nic and the same issue is reproduced on the 2nd port. The 2nd port shows up and displaysa link, but its like thecable is physically disconnected and reconnected. The link light on the switch turns off and on when connected to the switch. the bios has been updated to latest. i have also updated the drivers to latest even though currently installed windows 7 (to test) has the drivers inbuilt.
just an update on what i have tried. got the intel network tools installed and it keeps telling me the cable is being unplugged. I tried putting the computer into sleep then taking it out of sleep and the port found a ip address from the dhcp server, yet when i pinged the dhcp server the latency was in the high 500~ms when its right next to this computer. i was thinking maybe the motherboard doesnt supply enough power or something along them lines
I do not know anything about your specific motherboard, but going back to Justin's earlier comment about system resources suggests something else to try. Usually the BIOS has a setting for enabling or disabling the option ROM for each of the adapters. Unless you are doing remote boot, you should be able to get away with disabling the option ROM and possibly freeing up some resources.