New Install, should i use AMD64 build?



  • Currently i am running 2.0RC
    System specs are:
    Via C3 Nehemiah @ 1Ghz
    512MB DDR
    40GB IDE HDD

    My ISP recently increased my speed from 15/1 to 25/2.5
    Now my 8 year old mini-ITX system cant keep up.
    If i am downloading a torrent, the system reaches 100% CPU load and i can not even access the box while a torrent is on.
    Nor can i browse the web.  It seems like once i hit about 20Mbps the system is over taxed.

    I have just placed an order for Atom D525 system:
    http://www.supermicro.com/products/motherboard/ATOM/ICH9/X7SPA-H-D525.cfm
    That should have my issues resolved for the next few years.

    So now that I have a 64Bit enabled processor, should I continue to use the i386 Built?
    Or would I be better off with an AMD64 build?

    Also I plan to equip the system with 4GB of RAM as that the sweet spot for price/performance.
    But i would not be upset if i could not address all of the memory because 32bits is the better option.

    This is for a home network, and I do like squid.

    So why do the experts think?  i386 or AMD64 build?


  • Netgate Administrator

    I would have thought your VIA should be able to handle 25Mb/s with ease.  :-
    Are you running many packages?

    I'd stick with 32bit on the Atom. The performance increase going to 64bit is small and there are a lot less people running it hence more bugs.
    Even if you plan on running a lot of packages you won't need more than 3GB, 1GB would be fine!

    Not really an expert opinion!  ::)

    Steve

    Edit: Bit of an old thread but mostly holds true: http://forum.pfsense.org/index.php/topic,6414.0.html



  • Yeah i would have thought the VIA chip would have been ok…
    But we also have to remember the Via C3 is fairly slow MHz per MHz compared to a Pentium of its time.
    So its pretty much equivalent to a 500MHz P3.

    Just did a speedtest.net run and hitting 17Mbps I have a 35% CPU load
    Not sure what my wife was DL'ing earlier today, but it brought the system to its knees.
    All i know it was some torrent.  And her uTorrent setting are 4 files w/ 150 connections per.
    So my guess is the CPU just can't handle the speed plus the high amount of connections

    I also have:
    Firewall Optimization Options -> agressive
    So that should have also helped keep my CPU usage low.

    As for what packages.
    Had squid on before.
    But as of right now, since the ISP upgraded my package, just running vanilla.

    Yeah i know 1GB would be more than fine.
    My system only has 512Mb right now and have never gone past the 30's for percentage of memory used.
    But 4Gb is $45 bucks vs 2GB for $25.  With it being so cheap, and you can never have too much RAM...
    I see no reason not to buy now and not having to every worry about it.

    Very good point on why to use 32bit.
    That should also mean more stable.



  • will be picking up my new board tomorrow.
    and will be equipping it with 4GB of RAM as it was only $24



  • Are you using device polling?  My ~500mhz Soekris box barely makes a peep on a speedtest at 8-10mbit.  The only time I saw high CPU usage is with device polling enabled, and this is actually "by design."  (I didn't like it so I turned it back off.)



  • No I am not using device polling.
    The CPU was only was over burdened when DL over 20Mbps via torrents
    speedtest.net barely made a dent in CPU load when over 20Mbps
    It seems to cant handle the bandwidth combined with a high amount of active states



  • What NIC does the VIA system use? It might be possible that you'll also gain a bit more power by using the Intel based NICs from that supermicro board compared to an older NIC that didn't offload requests from the CPU.



  • Via VT6103 Networking Controller
    And Intel Pro GT….

    Via for WAN Intel for LAN


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