Hardware for my Small Office



  • Hello m8s, need some opinions in here.

    I have a small budget and i need to buy a machine that can support a 200Mbps Internet connection and some network services(Email and a new sharing service that im developing). Tell me you opinios about this:

    Board: Zotac G41ITX-A-E WIFI
    Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E7500
    RAM: 2GB RAM
    HARD Drive: Intel SSD 40GB

    here is the problem, i need a second network card, and this board have a pci-ex16 slot, is there any compatible network card ? any regular pciex1 is compatible with this slot ?
    150W power supply would be enough ?

    What do you think about the combo ?

    Opinions please.



  • whats the processor speed? also your ram seems good, for the SSD you are going to want an embedded version of PF. also whats the rating for the NICs (10, 100, 1000MBp/s).

    honestly for the connection your considering I think your (IMO) equipment should be decent, if you are needing no less then 200MBps and already have a 1.0GHz processor then you may start ending up in server grade equipment…but if you have at least a 2.5GHz processor in your rig you might be able to get away with what you have listed, may want to ensure your system could handle at least 4GB RAM (incase the current 2GB starts getting to be not enough since I run 4GB in a similar configuration and it works good for me and its not a server system, but I would strongly recommend no less then a 300W PSU (partly incase you system needs a bit more power and for future expandability if you have to get stronger processor or what ever)

    reason I suggest no less then a 300W PSU is the stronger/more powerful the processor the more power it will need to run at full speed...

    If you require less than 10 Mbps of throughput, you can get by with the minimum requirements. For higher throughput requirements we recommend following these guidelines, based on our extensive testing and deployment experience. These guidelines offer a bit of breathing room because you never want to run your hardware to its full capacity.
    10-20 Mbps - No less than 266 MHz CPU
    21-50 Mbps - No less than 500 MHz CPU
    51-200 Mbps - No less than 1.0 GHz CPU
    201-500 Mbps - server class hardware with PCI-X or PCI-e network adapters, or newer desktop hardware with PCI-e network adapters. No less than 2.0 GHz CPU.
    501+ Mbps - server class hardware with PCI-X or PCI-e network adapters. No less than 3.0 GHz CPU.

    direct from http://www.pfsense.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=52&Itemid=49



  • @jaime:

    whats the processor speed? also your ram seems good, for the SSD you are going to want an embedded version of PF. also whats the rating for the NICs (10, 100, 1000MBp/s).

    honestly for the connection your considering I think your (IMO) equipment should be decent, if you are needing no less then 200MBps and already have a 1.0GHz processor then you may start ending up in server grade equipment…but if you have at least a 2.5GHz processor in your rig you might be able to get away with what you have listed, may want to ensure your system could handle at least 4GB RAM (incase the current 2GB starts getting to be not enough since I run 4GB in a similar configuration and it works good for me and its not a server system, but I would strongly recommend no less then a 300W PSU (partly incase you system needs a bit more power and for future expandability if you have to get stronger processor or what ever)

    reason I suggest no less then a 300W PSU is the stronger/more powerful the processor the more power it will need to run at full speed...

    The processor is a dual core  2.93 Ghz, i agree with 4GB of RAM, what about he network card ? any information/opinions ?



  • im assuming its a card that has a chip set thats already supported by PFsense, but are they gigabit, or are they only 10/100? they should be at least gigabit, and as for the 2.93GHz that should be enough, may need to bump to 3.0GHz dual core, but seeing as your running the equivalent of a 5.86 processor (you have two cores running at the 2.93GHz) creating a total speed (combined) of 5.86GHz should be plenty, now the network cards may be a possible bottle neck…

    whats the manufacture of the car(s), chipset, speed of cards, that will also help us out with determining if your set up will work, which at this point it seems pretty good, just need to get the info about the cards :)



  • @jaime:

    im assuming its a card that has a chip set thats already supported by PFsense, but are they gigabit, or are they only 10/100? they should be at least gigabit, and as for the 2.93GHz that should be enough, may need to bump to 3.0GHz dual core, but seeing as your running the equivalent of a 5.86 processor (you have two cores running at the 2.93GHz) creating a total speed (combined) of 5.86GHz should be plenty, now the network cards may be a possible bottle neck…

    whats the manufacture of the car(s), chipset, speed of cards, that will also help us out with determining if your set up will work, which at this point it seems pretty good, just need to get the info about the cards :)

    the manufacture its intel. The onboard its intel and the other one i want to buy Intel both are 10/100/1000. i dont know the chipset, can´t find any information.



  • then you should be good to go for the most part, I think Atheros (sorry if spelling is off) is one of the "better" chipsets to be using since it seems there is a better compadibility across the BSD based systems out there, I actually have (ironicially) on my box one realtek (based on board) and linksys card (chip set unknown)



  • Just wondering why the suggestion of the embedded version?  It's a SSD, so it's basically a hard drive.  With 40gb, I'd want to run the full version.
      Honestly I don't see the logic of any embedded version install.  A 40 GB intel SSD is around $100 as of today and should last as long as any HDD.  Unless I had a spare compact flash card, I would never buy one if I could get a cheap SSD.  I must be missing something??

    I've never understood the embedded version logic.  Can someone fill me in?



  • @tester_02:

    I've never understood the embedded version logic.  Can someone fill me in?

    Quite likely history. If you were starting development now there might not be much reason to consider an embedded version for the reasons you gave. BUT there is a considerable number of systems out there for which a CF card is a much more attractive option than a SSD or HD.



  • @tester_02:

    Just wondering why the suggestion of the embedded version?  It's a SSD, so it's basically a hard drive.  With 40gb, I'd want to run the full version.
      Honestly I don't see the logic of any embedded version install.  A 40 GB intel SSD is around $100 as of today and should last as long as any HDD.  Unless I had a spare compact flash card, I would never buy one if I could get a cheap SSD.  I must be missing something??

    I've never understood the embedded version logic.  Can someone fill me in?

    generally the embedded version isn't going to have too many packages that will do massive read/writes to the drive, and since SSD will have a certain  amount of read/writes that can be done it is meant and designed (embedded version) to help extend the life of the card or SSD device as much as possible



  • Thanks for the fill in.  My assumption was that is was past history, and that seems confirmed.  I'll stick to a cheap intel SSD on the full version.



  • well I got a inexpensive SSD (DOM) that is a 1 GB that I will put the embedded on and it was picked up for $21.00 USD off ebay (fleabay) so if you need SSD there are options out there but I would strongly suggest the embedded for SSD unless you know for sure that your full install isn't going to do any massive R/W of any kind, which most people are using the full to get more feature rich set up so depending on what they use will determine the configuration in some ways, and since some really would want a quiet system that makes little to no noise (like me) they would be more for the SSD option (SSD being any thing like CF, SSD HDD, DOM, etc) there fore limiting the use of things like squid, snort or any program that will constantly write logs or other info to the disk there by shortening the SSD device's life.


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