Intel atom 330 vs 230 ?



  • I am standing between Atom 330 or 230 for my PF Sense project. I saw that when u install you can choose multi CPU. How much will I gain?
    Will it be worth the extra 30% pricetag ?



  • Maybe nothing, maybe lots.

    If you're just using pfSense as a firewall then probably very little.  If you're also installing packages then maybe a lot - depends on the packages ;)



  • @Cry:

    Maybe nothing, maybe lots.

    If you're just using pfSense as a firewall then probably very little.  If you're also installing packages then maybe a lot - depends on the packages ;)

    Im just gonna use it 100% firewall, without any addons or stuff.

    As it looks now I have a good price on a Celeron 1800mhz/512 Socket775, it should be enough for 100/100 all out I hope.



  • Can I strongly recommend you do some reading of the forum.  Being able to push 100 Mb/s in both directions takes more than just a CPU.  Your choice of network card will probably matter more.



  • @Cry:

    Can I strongly recommend you do some reading of the forum.  Being able to push 100 Mb/s in both directions takes more than just a CPU.  Your choice of network card will probably matter more.

    Yes, im atm @ 2x Realtek cards (PCI 32-bit), they arent the optimal I feel, planning to get myself 2x Intel Pro 1000mbit PCIe next month



  • @akus:

    Yes, im atm @ 2x Realtek cards (PCI 32-bit), they arent the optimal I feel, planning to get myself 2x Intel Pro 1000mbit PCIe next month

    The ubiquitous RTL8139 can't do 100mbit. You don't really need to go as far as the GigE PCIe cards though, a couple PCI Intel Pro/100s can probably fill your needs, and they're cheap as chips these days.



  • @ktims:

    @akus:

    Yes, im atm @ 2x Realtek cards (PCI 32-bit), they arent the optimal I feel, planning to get myself 2x Intel Pro 1000mbit PCIe next month

    The ubiquitous RTL8139 can't do 100mbit. You don't really need to go as far as the GigE PCIe cards though, a couple PCI Intel Pro/100s can probably fill your needs, and they're cheap as chips these days.

    Well its not 8139 i have, think its 8101SC its 2x Gigabit realteks. But I will get the Intel Pro 1000mbit to be ready for inc uppgrade this summer, dont feel like buying 2x100mbit for 40 euro a piece now and in 3months 2x1000mbit for 60 euro a piece. Will PFsense work fine with Intel Pro PT 1000mbit ? For example Smoothwall wasen't to happy with PCIe cards =/



  • @akus:

    Will PFsense work fine with Intel Pro PT 1000mbit ? For example Smoothwall wasen't to happy with PCIe cards =/

    Yup, works perfectly. Some newer chips may not work in the FreeBSD 6.2 based 1.2, but they will work fine in 1.2.2 or the upcoming 1.2.3.



  • Those Realtek cards should be fine - it's only (some of the) old 10/100 chips that were impressively terrible ;)  I'd suggest you test them out to avoid having to buy more hardware you don't need.



  • @Cry:

    Those Realtek cards should be fine - it's only (some of the) old 10/100 chips that were impressively terrible ;)  I'd suggest you test them out to avoid having to buy more hardware you don't need.

    With P2P stuff im having problem reaching over 30mbit/s. Downloaded from an ftp @ 43mbit/s maximum atm. In everyday use I can use about 15/15mbit/s on P2P content before it starts to rise in ms in games and notacibly slower web-browsing. I like to have alot of stuff going without compromising my ms in games. So I will go for the better NIC's I guess, the hardware atm is a P4 2,6ghz 768ram, so i guess the CPU is good for atleast 100/100 ?

    But anyhow ? You must admit its fun to buy hardware that you dont need =)



  • There are plenty of posts, and some stuff on the pfSense pages (and wiki) about hardware sizing.  Random guesswork isn't your friend ;)



  • @Cry:

    There are plenty of posts, and some stuff on the pfSense pages (and wiki) about hardware sizing.  Random guesswork isn't your friend ;)

    Ok i've checked around but here is one thing. I have orderd 2 cards called Intel Pro/1000 PT. They aren't listed as supported cards under the hardware list(exact matched name). But the controller chip that the
    card is built on is listed as supported and other cards in the list uses that controller also? What shall I do? Turn them back to the vendor or they will work?

    Its the chip that we are talking about is called 82572:

    "    The em driver supports Gigabit Ethernet adapters based on the Intel
        82540, 82541ER, 82541PI, 82542, 82543, 82544, 82545, 82546, 82546EB,
        82546GB, 82547, 82571, 82572 and 82573 controller chips:

    · Intel PRO/1000 CT Network Connection (82547)
        · Intel PRO/1000 F Server Adapter (82543)
        · Intel PRO/1000 Gigabit Server Adapter (82542)
        · Intel PRO/1000 GT Desktop Adapter (82541PI)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MF Dual Port Server Adapter (82546)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MF Server Adapter (82545)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MF Server Adapter (LX) (82545)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MT Desktop Adapter (82540)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MT Desktop Adapter (82541)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MT Dual Port Server Adapter (82546)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MT Quad Port Server Adapter (82546EB)
        · Intel PRO/1000 MT Server Adapter (82545)
        · Intel PRO/1000 T Desktop Adapter (82544)
        · Intel PRO/1000 T Server Adapter (82543)
        · Intel PRO/1000 XF Server Adapter (82544)
        · Intel PRO/1000 XT Server Adapter (82544)
    "



  • I expect you will find your cards work fine.

    If I recall correctly the 82571 was the first Intel PCI Express GigE chip and those with higher numbers came later.  Notice that the list of cards doesn't include any based on the 8257x. The list probably hasn't been kept current the way the list of supported chips has been. A further reason for confidence is that an Intel employee has been committing the updates to support new Intel GigE chips.



  • @wallabybob:

    I expect you will find your cards work fine.

    If I recall correctly the 82571 was the first Intel PCI Express GigE chip and those with higher numbers came later.  Notice that the list of cards doesn't include any based on the 8257x. The list probably hasn't been kept current the way the list of supported chips has been. A further reason for confidence is that an Intel employee has been committing the updates to support new Intel GigE chips.

    What got me wondering is that if you visit Intel's website you discover that (atm atleast) that particular card isen't supported in OpenBSD. Since im a mere amatuer in BSD I don't know if this apply FreeBSD also.
    And I certanly don't know if that apply to PF Sense. Well let's see what happens when they arrive =)



  • I just remembered I bought a couple of Intel Pro/1000 PT cards for work a couple of years ago. They are recognised by FreeBSD 7.0 and work well.



  • @wallabybob:

    I just remembered I bought a couple of Intel Pro/1000 PT cards for work a couple of years ago. They are recognised by FreeBSD 7.0 and work well.

    After the recomendation to what Cry Havok wrote about looking around in the forums/wiki for hardware that work, it have got more confusing than before =). But what is very very clear.
    Stick with Intel and it will work as expected. Experementing with cheap stuff will only give u sad face =). So that is what I just did =). And I hope I will get smiley face when I get it rigged up =)



  • @Cry:

    There are plenty of posts, and some stuff on the pfSense pages (and wiki) about hardware sizing.  Random guesswork isn't your friend ;)

    So after alot of looking around and stuff, I have bought some hardware for my becoming router/firewall. I am a student so the money I get my hands on are not much (and of my local customs take 50% of everything I get my hands on).

    CPU: Intel Dual-Core E2XXX  2,2ghz /1meg cache / 800mhz FSB Socket 775
    MB: Asus P5N-E nForce 650i
    Mem: 512 DDR2 533mhz
    HDD: ATA 100 7200rpm
    2xNIC: HP INTEL PRO/1000PT DESKTOP MANAGEABLE PCI-E

    I will only have my PF Sense as standard, using DHCP, nothing else. No VPN/IPsec/PPPTP or stuff like that.

    My goal atm is to push 100/100 through WAN, and in the longterm(before end of this year) get 1000/1000 through WAN.
    If my setup won't push 100/100 through WAN, what is it I should replace? Or will I have a software issue?
    What do I have to replace to get 1000/1000 trough? (CPU i recon ofc, but otherwise?).



  • Note that the recommendation for Intel Server grade cards, which perform much better than the desktop cards.  You'd possibly also benefit from more memory.

    Once more, you'll find more (particularly about pushing Gbit traffic) in the forum already.



  • @Cry:

    Note that the recommendation for Intel Server grade cards, which perform much better than the desktop cards.  You'd possibly also benefit from more memory.

    Once more, you'll find more (particularly about pushing Gbit traffic) in the forum already.

    Yea i guess it's a whole science how to reach 1gbit all out. But refering to your awnser I should be able with no complication get out 100/100 from that setup?



  • Given that I can push 50 Mb/s with a single core 1 GHz box using the problem Realtek cards, yes you should have no problem with 100 Mb/s.  After that there will be a lot of "it depends"…

    Pushing 100 Mb/s of maximum size packets as a single session has a very different load to pushing 100 Mb/s of minimum size packets between thousands of different hosts.  Your exact usage profile will make a big difference to what hardware you need.



  • @Cry:

    Given that I can push 50 Mb/s with a single core 1 GHz box using the problem Realtek cards, yes you should have no problem with 100 Mb/s.  After that there will be a lot of "it depends"…

    Pushing 100 Mb/s of maximum size packets as a single session has a very different load to pushing 100 Mb/s of minimum size packets between thousands of different hosts.  Your exact usage profile will make a big difference to what hardware you need.

    So ofc bit-torrent traffic is the worst kind I guess =)



  • @akus:

    @Cry:

    Given that I can push 50 Mb/s with a single core 1 GHz box using the problem Realtek cards, yes you should have no problem with 100 Mb/s.  After that there will be a lot of "it depends"…

    Pushing 100 Mb/s of maximum size packets as a single session has a very different load to pushing 100 Mb/s of minimum size packets between thousands of different hosts.  Your exact usage profile will make a big difference to what hardware you need.

    So ofc bit-torrent traffic is the worst kind I guess =)

    I am using 1.2GHz old duron with many extra packages (squid etc.) and I am seeing 10-20% cpu use with max traffic. My connection is only 24Mbps but if you multiple that by four you can see that even this machine could handle the load probably.

    Your machine is probably a bit overkill, atleast the cpu. I would personally buy atom330 and more RAM.



  • @n1ko:

    @akus:

    @Cry:

    Given that I can push 50 Mb/s with a single core 1 GHz box using the problem Realtek cards, yes you should have no problem with 100 Mb/s.  After that there will be a lot of "it depends"…

    Pushing 100 Mb/s of maximum size packets as a single session has a very different load to pushing 100 Mb/s of minimum size packets between thousands of different hosts.  Your exact usage profile will make a big difference to what hardware you need.

    So ofc bit-torrent traffic is the worst kind I guess =)

    I am using 1.2GHz old duron with many extra packages (squid etc.) and I am seeing 10-20% cpu use with max traffic. My connection is only 24Mbps but if you multiple that by four you can see that even this machine could handle the load probably.

    Your machine is probably a bit overkill, atleast the cpu. I would personally buy atom330 and more RAM.

    Hello there and thx 4 the reply.

    Well 512 ram was because i got it cheap. But this morning i won a auction for 1gib DDR2 for 5euro. So it will be more ofc. Only thing I haven't decided is if I should return the NICS (they arent opend yet) and get maby a dual RJ45 server grade NIC, but that will prob be about 50euro more or something.



  • As far as I can tell there's little to no difference between the server and desktop Intel cards. I can't find any difference in capabilities or performance, and when I posed the question nobody was able to come up with anything. I think the desktop cards are fine, and excellent. You should keep them, they will work well.



  • Do your homework before selecting dual NIC cards. I've seen some which are PCI-Express x4 cards which won't go into a PCI Express x1 slot.



  • @ktims:

    As far as I can tell there's little to no difference between the server and desktop Intel cards. I can't find any difference in capabilities or performance, and when I posed the question nobody was able to come up with anything. I think the desktop cards are fine, and excellent. You should keep them, they will work well.

    Yes, well I also cant find any difference, so I will prob keep them. Thx 4 sharing with us.

    As for Walleybob, Yea all dual PCIe cards seems to run on 4x and higher, I have a free x16 port with 8 lanes on the motherboard so that woulden't be a problem.

    After the summer when I wanna get up to gigabit speeds, if the 2x PT 1000 dosen't do the job, ill put them in my home servers and get something else.



  • @ktims:

    As far as I can tell there's little to no difference between the server and desktop Intel cards.

    Then you obviously haven't been doing your research ;)  There is a world of difference between them.



  • I'm using the D-Link 4 port PCI server card and it works great with PfSense.  I paid like $50 on ebay so I bought one more as a spare.

    I like having 4 ports on a single card as I have plans to swap out the old Dell OtpiPlex GX150 1Ghz PIII with the Atom 330.  So looking for a small form factor box that doesn't have to look like a huge desktop PC as a router and lower power consumption too.



  • @Cry:

    Then you obviously haven't been doing your research ;)  There is a world of difference between them.

    Care to elaborate? I can't even find any substantial difference between them in Intel's marketing materials. They seem to use the same chipsets, report the same capabilities to the OS, and all support CRC offload and segmentation offload, along with hardware VLAN tagging and so on. If there's such a difference I'd really be interested to know what it is. Compare the web feature lists.



  • Historically the server cards result in a significantly lower CPU (interrupt) load than the desktop cards.  If you look through this forum and the archives of many network specific FreeBSD and Linux mailing lists you'll see others reporting the same difference.

    A quick check of the stuff you link to shows that (for example) the controllers are different - the Desktop PCIe card uses the 82574L controller, the Server cards use the 82572GI, 82571GB or 82576 controllers.  Also, the desktop controller is only PCIe 1.1 and a single lane.  The server controllers start there and go up.



  • Also if you compare the datasheets of the two:
    http://www.intel.com/Assets/PDF/prodbrief/pro1000_pt_desktop_adapter.pdf
    http://www.intel.com/Assets/PDF/prodbrief/pro1000_pt_server_adapter.pdf

    Desktop:
    Network Operating Systems (NOS) Software Support
    Microsoft Windows* Professional, XP, 2000 •
    Red Hat Linux* 2.4x or later (32- and 64-bit) •
    Novell Netware* 5.x, 6.x •

    Server:
    Microsoft Windows* Server 2003, Enterprise, Datacenter (32- & 64-bit) •
    Microsoft Windows 2000 •
    Red Hat Linux* 2.4x or later (32- and 64-bit) •
    FreeBSD 4.x or later •
    Novell Netware* 5.x, 6.x •
    Sun Solaris* x86, OS 8 and later •
    SCO Open Server 5, OpenUNIX 8* •

    Apparently FreeBSD is "officially" only supported with the server card.

    But the main difference are mostly in the advanced featuers:

    Desktop:
    Advanced Software Features
    Test switch configuration Tested with major switch original equipment manufacturers (OEMS)
    TCP checksum offload—transmission control protocol (TCP), user datagram protocol (UDP), Internet protocol (IP) •
    IEEE 802.1p*, Intel® Priority Packet II •
    TCP segmentation/large send offload •
    Interrupt moderation •

    Server:
    Adapter fault tolerance (AFT) •
    Switch fault tolerance (SFT) •
    Adaptive load balancing (ALB) •
    Fast EtherChannel4 (FEC) •
    Gigabit EtherChannel
    4 (GEC) •
    Teaming support Scales up to 4 connections
    Multiple teams Supports 2 separate teams, maximum
    IEEE 802.3ad* (link aggregation control protocol)4 •
    Test switch configuration Tested with major switch original equipment manufacturers (OEMs)
    PCIe Hot Plug*/Active peripheral component interconnect (PCI) •
    IEEE 802.1Q* VLANs •
    IEEE 802.3* (z, ab, u, x) flow control support •
    TCP checksum offload — transmission control protocol (TCP), user datagram protocol (UDP), •
    Internet protocol (IP)
    IEEE 802.1p* •
    TCP checksum/large send offload •
    Interrupt moderation •



  • Also don't forget the huge difference in cost between desktop and server NICs.

    Just have to weigh that in and see if it's really worth it.  If the router is going to be used in a corporate or enterprise environment might as well get decent hardware to support it.



  • Concerning the claimed differences between the Intel PRO/1000 PT "desktop" and "server" NICs I confess to being a little unconvinced that all those differences noted actually reflect a significant difference in capability when used with the FreeBSD drivers. For instance, both documents claim the same chipset but VLAN support is listed only for the "server" version. (Maybe there is a board jumper or configuration ROM difference that disables VLAN support on the desktop variant.) PCI Express Hotplug support is listed for the server variant but FreeBSD doesn't support PCI Express hotplug. The server datasheet extols the virtues of "receive side scaling" but I can't see any evidence this is supported on FreeBSD.

    Some of the noted differences are under the category of "advanced software features" in the datasheets which presumably means software needs some smarts to provide these features which may mean there isn't really any hardware difference affecting the feature. For example, the driver in "desktop" Windows may not provide link aggregation whereas the driver in "server" Windows might.

    Is this another example of a supplier feeling they can get away with charging more for a product with a "server" tag over the same product (or effectively the same) product with a "desktop" tag?



  • @wallabybob:

    Concerning the claimed differences between the Intel PRO/1000 PT "desktop" and "server" NICs I confess to being a little unconvinced that all those differences noted actually reflect a significant difference in capability when used with the FreeBSD drivers. For instance, both documents claim the same chipset but VLAN support is listed only for the "server" version. (Maybe there is a board jumper or configuration ROM difference that disables VLAN support on the desktop variant.) PCI Express Hotplug support is listed for the server variant but FreeBSD doesn't support PCI Express hotplug. The server datasheet extols the virtues of "receive side scaling" but I can't see any evidence this is supported on FreeBSD.

    Some of the noted differences are under the category of "advanced software features" in the datasheets which presumably means software needs some smarts to provide these features which may mean there isn't really any hardware difference affecting the feature. For example, the driver in "desktop" Windows may not provide link aggregation whereas the driver in "server" Windows might.

    Is this another example of a supplier feeling they can get away with charging more for a product with a "server" tag over the same product (or effectively the same) product with a "desktop" tag?

    Im just an amaterur, but its not unusual for manufactuers to provide same chip on 2 different stuff and charge 2x more for one just because there are software enabled stuff on the expensive one. We should
    all have a little critisim to products and not just tag along with the information they provide us with.


Log in to reply