CompactFlash Suggestion



  • I'm looking to use a CF card to boot a new pfSense box with.  Initially I'm just going to be doing routing with QoS, but in the future I'd like to add more RAM and make a transparent Squid proxy.

    1. Will 2GB be enough space for these uses?

    2. Does the speed of the card make that much of a difference during usage and configuration?

    3. Is there a better option for me?

    The system is a Pentium III 1.5GHz 128MB RAM system.  I'm using a CF -> IDE adapter, and I already tested a 2GB Kingston and a 2GB SanDisk Ultra II.  The Kingston took a ridiculously long time to install, while the SanDisk seemed more normal.  The SanDisk seemed to boot faster, and testing the card's speeds on my desktop showed the Kingston to read at about 11.7MB/s and the SanDisk at 14.2MB/s.  I want something that responds a little faster though, so I'm looking at getting this 2GB Transcend that has an advertised read speed of 40MB/s.



  • Note that packages require a full install.  Full install on CF (not microdrive) isn't supported.

    There is a published minimum spec.

    Card speed will make a difference to anything that uses the disk, such as squid.

    If you're planning on doing a full install, consider hard disk (such as a 2.5" hard disk or a microdrive).



  • Is there any reason that full install on a CF isn't supported?  I've done a couple of full installs onto CF and they seemed fine. I am using [ur=http://www.syba.com/Product/Info/Id/297l]this IDE to CF adapter.  Would I need more than 2GB if using Squid?  I was hoping to use solid state instead of spinning disk to reduce power, heat, and noise.



  • The typical CF card will wear out from the repeated writing of a full install.



  • Well, if it can last several months, it'll be worth the $25 for experiment.



  • For a price even lower, you will get a refurbished MicroDrive on eBay…
    (Buy a Hitachi one)



  • I think I'd pay $25 to not have to deal with ebay/paypal.  How fast are microdrives?


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