So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

The network is the forum.

Moderators: Steel, notfred

So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:22 pm

As the subject states, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card. My only restriction is that it be compatible with Linux.

This Encore seems quite attractive:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6833180026

The adpater will be plugged into a 32 bit, 33 MHz PCI slot. I know that the bus will cap the performance rather than the hard drive, but that's alright.

Any thoughts?
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:33 pm

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6833106121

In the Linux kernel since 2.2.5 and Intel NICs just don't go flaky. I've replaced 2 different dodgy mobo NICs with Intel NICs (1 PCI, 1 PCI-E) and have never looked back or had the slightest issue.
It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them. Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Captain Ned
Global Moderator
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 20112
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Vermont, USA

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:37 pm

Intel NICs /are/ nice if you don't mind paying a little extra.
Think for yourself, schmuck!
i5-2500K@4.3|Asus P8P67-LE|8GB DDR3-1600|Powercolor R7850 2G|1.5TB 7200.11|1988 Model M|Saitek X-45 & P880|Logitech MX 518|Dell 2209WA|Sennheiser PC151|Asus Xonar DX
bthylafh
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3130
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2003 11:55 pm
Location: Southwest Missouri, USA

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:46 pm

Crabs have been the cause of many a ruined evening. You are probably thinking, "well, a card is a card and I'm broke so what's the worst that can happen." Realtek is the gift that keeps on giving.
#182 TT: 13/DNVT, Precedence: Flash Override. Switch: Node Center. MSE forever.
Contingency
Gerbil Jedi
 
Posts: 1531
Joined: Sat Jun 19, 2004 4:03 pm
Location: al.us

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:49 pm

Contingency wrote:Crabs have been the cause of many a ruined evening. You are probably thinking, "well, a card is a card and I'm broke so what's the worst that can happen." Realtek is the gift that keeps on giving.

Run, run fast from the Crab. Don't buy another Crabby Patty.
It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them. Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Captain Ned
Global Moderator
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 20112
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Vermont, USA

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:33 pm

Okay, so the gf wants to know specifically what's either so great about the Intel or what's so terrible about the one I linked earlier. (Actually, I know what's so great about the Intel, but I need help justifying the extra expense.)
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:36 pm

titan wrote:Okay, so the gf wants to know specifically what's either so great about the Intel or what's so terrible about the one I linked earlier. (Actually, I know what's so great about the Intel, but I need help justifying the extra expense.)

Mostly because it's very similar to the chip that is put into servers. I've got one in my drawer and it's an A+ performer.
Usacomp2k3
Gerbil God
 
Posts: 21281
Joined: Thu Apr 01, 2004 4:53 pm
Location: Orlando, FL

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 7:59 pm

Realtek products have a reputation for being quirky (features only working under select circumstances). This introduces the Realtek Factor(tm). You've been working on a project all night. Why isn't it working? Unless you know exactly what you're doing, any problem will suffer the additional complexity of hardware possibly not functioning correctly. This increases time spent doing research, pursuing false leads, and in some cases, limits what you can do with the hardware.

Intel cards work. Not an incredibly difficult bar to reach, but crabs are not known for their vertical leap.
#182 TT: 13/DNVT, Precedence: Flash Override. Switch: Node Center. MSE forever.
Contingency
Gerbil Jedi
 
Posts: 1531
Joined: Sat Jun 19, 2004 4:03 pm
Location: al.us

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 8:59 pm

titan wrote:Okay, so the gf wants to know specifically what's either so great about the Intel or what's so terrible about the one I linked earlier. (Actually, I know what's so great about the Intel, but I need help justifying the extra expense.)

How many hours did you spend to diagnose the failed Crab on your mobo? What's the value of those hours?

Get an Intel NIC and you will never again spend those hours in troubleshooting. Buy another Crab and the $30 you saved will be spent once again.
It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them. Ralph Waldo Emerson.
Captain Ned
Global Moderator
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 20112
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Vermont, USA

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 9:44 pm

I never had seen a NIC fail (even crabs), but it doesn't mean cannot happen. What I do find is that cable fails for whatever reason. Longer lengths are more prone to this. I would try to see if the cable is the culprit, before getting a replacement NIC.

Intel NICs are nice, because they offer some enterprise-level tools in their drivers and the high-end models take the load off the CPU (Not a issue for home users).
Ivy Bridge i5-3570K@4.0Ghz, Gigabyte Z77X-UD3H, 2x4GiB of PC-12800, EVGA 660Ti, Corsair CX-600 and Fractal Refined R4 (W). Kentsfield Q6600@3Ghz, HD 4850 2x2GiB PC2-6400, Gigabyte EP45-DS4P, OCZ Modstream 700W, and PC-7B.
Krogoth
Maximum Gerbil
Silver subscriber
 
 
Posts: 4395
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2003 3:20 pm
Location: somewhere on Core Prime

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 9:51 pm

Intel cards since the 3C509-era have incorporated more and more of the OSI layer functions onto the card itself. Intel's server cards incorporate as much of the OSI layer in hardware as is possible (which is what makes them complex and expensive) but their commercial cards still retain much of their server brethren's inclusiveness in this regard.

OTOH, the cheap NIC cards act more or less like soft-modems used to by off-loading most of their duties to the CPU. This makes them more unstable and prone to quirkiness, especially in regards to driver bugs and poor performance during heavy CPU usage.
Last edited by bdwilcox on Mon Feb 01, 2010 1:46 am, edited 2 times in total.
bdwilcox
Graphmaster Gerbil
 
Posts: 1261
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2003 12:21 pm

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 10:36 pm

Just to echo the comments. I can vouch for the quality of Intel NIC's. I've used strictly Intel gigabit NIC's for the last few years and two of my systems have Intel motherboards which both have Intel PHY's. Intel NIC's are by far the highest quality and highest performing out there.

I'll also say if at all possible go with a PCIe NIC. PCI is not capable of handling the full throughput of gigabit ethernet.
Taddeusz
Minister of Gerbil Affairs
 
Posts: 2618
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 6:16 pm
Location: Oklahoma City

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:52 pm

bdwilcox wrote:Intel cards since the 3C509

Isn't that a 3Com card?
Image
The Model M is not for the faint of heart. You either like them or hate them.

Gerbils unite! Fold for UnitedGerbilNation, team 2630.
Flying Fox
Gerbil God
 
Posts: 24289
Joined: Mon May 24, 2004 2:19 am

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Mon Feb 01, 2010 12:00 am

Captain Ned: Actually, it's a VIA NIC and chipset, but your point still stands.

Krogoth: I've started another thread yesterday and my troubleshooting has lead me down the path to the NIC being the issue, not the cable.

Taddeusz: I'd love to go PCIe, but I can't. I'm stuck on an aging Athlon XP-M platform. Hopefully within a year I'll be getting a brand spanking new computer system.

For the moment, I'm using the D-Link DFE-530TX+ that I stole from my server. It works for the moment along with the now infamous long Ethernet cable. My only concern is that is partially covers the fan on my graphics card. I'm sure the Intel NIC will do the same. Worse comes to worse, I'll yank out my sound card and suffer with the inferior on board audio. (This sucks being stuck with MicroATX. It was the only form factor available from NewEgg when I needed to get a replacement motherboard.)

The GF has now been convinced that the Intel NIC is worth the extra cost. She isn't happy about it, but she understands. (I'm a quality person and she's a quantity person.) And, while the offloading may be intended for server environments as Krogoth pointed out, I believe I will see the same benefits, if not greater, because of the age of my system.
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Mon Feb 01, 2010 12:01 am

Flying Fox wrote:
bdwilcox wrote:Intel cards since the 3C509

Isn't that a 3Com card?

I think that's his point. The Intel cards have stepped up their quality to fill the gap 3Com left.
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Mon Feb 01, 2010 1:45 am

titan wrote:
Flying Fox wrote:
bdwilcox wrote:Intel cards since the 3C509

Isn't that a 3Com card?

I think that's his point. The Intel cards have stepped up their quality to fill the gap 3Com left.

Fixed.
bdwilcox
Graphmaster Gerbil
 
Posts: 1261
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2003 12:21 pm

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Mon Feb 01, 2010 6:50 am

axeman wrote:I've had really good success with Marvell-based gigabit cards, I've replaced a few flakey realtek (PCI) nics with Marvell.... Mind you, anything but realtek is probably better.
I used a Marvell NIC to replace a flaky NVidia "active armor" NIC. I had to tape over the NVidia jack to prevent family members from using it. Back when motherboards didn't come with built-in NICs, I used Intel cards.
JustAnEngineer
Gerbil God
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 15337
Joined: Sat Jan 26, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: The Heart of Dixie

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Mon Feb 01, 2010 10:03 am

I went ahead and ordered the Intel. I was lucky. I found it on Amazon for 33.71 and free two day shipping because I'm a Prime member. (My boss paid for the membership because we order a bunch of stuff from there on occasion.)

It's amazing when you look at the reviews. They're on one side or the other.

"Really fantastic. All I had to do was plug it into my XP machine and it worked! Didn't even need the disk for the drivers. Really Fast!"

"Avoid this card like the plague. It doesn't work with XP. No drivers. Really sucks."

I'm liable to think that the negative reviews are more likely about dead cards -- dead for whatever reason -- than poor quality product. Especially when they're at such odds.

Anyway, I was able to play Guild Wars for about an hour without a problem. So, apparently there's enough clearance for airflow.
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Wed Feb 03, 2010 5:11 pm

Fantastic!

I finally have a gigabit connection to my gigabit switch! Now I need to get another one for the server. Maybe two.
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Wed Feb 03, 2010 5:26 pm

titan wrote:Fantastic!

I finally have a gigabit connection to my gigabit switch! Now I need to get another one for the server. Maybe two.

Nice, isn't it. :D
[Hannibal] "I love it when a plan comes together." [/Hannibal]
bdwilcox
Graphmaster Gerbil
 
Posts: 1261
Joined: Mon Apr 21, 2003 12:21 pm

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Wed Feb 03, 2010 7:53 pm

Things do seem to be a bit snappier, but that's probably perceived. :D

Anyway, I did get the card working under Linux; hint: search for e1000. (Actually, I almost didn't get it working, and then I remembered that it'd be eth1, not eth0. (For some reason, Windows freaks out if the VIA NIC isn't enabled in the BIOS, but I have it disabled in the Network Connections.))
The best things in life are free.
http://www.gentoo.org
Guy 1: Surely, you will fold with me.
Guy 2: Alright, but don't call me Shirley.
titan
Grand Gerbil Poohbah
 
Posts: 3276
Joined: Mon Feb 18, 2002 7:00 pm
Location: Great Smoky Mountains

Re: So, I'm in the market for a new gigabit card

Postposted on Wed Feb 03, 2010 9:39 pm

titan wrote:... My only restriction is that it be compatible with Linux.

FWIW I have yet to encounter any commodity wired NIC (VIA, Realtek, or otherwise) that wouldn't play nice with Linux. Cheap NICs are ubiquitous enough, and the details of how the chips themselves work are understood well enough, that the "out of the box" Open Source drivers that come bundled with any recent Linux distro generally just work with no additional effort.

WiFi cards not so much... but that's a story for another thread. :-?
(this space intentionally left blank)
just brew it!
Administrator
Gold subscriber
 
 
Posts: 37509
Joined: Tue Aug 20, 2002 10:51 pm
Location: Somewhere, having a beer


Return to Networking

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Buub and 3 guests