Setting up a PFSENSE box from Netbook;



  • So yes you heard correctly haha, I did have tonnes of old ass computers that I threw away and now wish I kept :(

    First off I apologise if this is in the wrong section, but there is a few subjects that it could head under so Ive put it in "general", and I hope thats fine;

    So the situation is of course the netbook only has ONE NIC… I was wondering what would be best to use for the second NIC...

    basically I already have a PCIe mini to PCIe 16x full size (GPU size) adaptor, I bought for using a external GPU on the netbook  like so...

    …and was wondering if I should just buy a NIC for it using this adapter, OR weather I should buy a whole new adapter that would convert PCIe mini to the NIC itself such as ive seen on a few subjects on this forum like and example would be this...

    PS EDIT: I have heard that USB NICS are bad news because of the slow network rate and comparability, but Ive just also found this http://www.dlink.com/uk/en/home-solutions/connect/usb/dub-e100-high-speed-usb-2-fast-ethernet-adapter

    Claiming to be a "high speed" one, weather its compatible, and or actually fit for purpose I dont know?



  • Din't use a USB NIC unless you can't avoid it.  I also wouldn't recommend adding one of those expansion cards and just leaving it sit out on your desk.

    Your better bet, assuming the bandwidth from your ISP is well below the NIC speed, is probably a switch that supports vLANs.  At that point you'd only need 1 physical NIC.



  • Yeah I did some research now, the physical speed of USB 2.0 (480mbps) is the limit, so a usb NIC claiming it can be 10/100/1000 surely is never going to get past 480mbps providing its USB 2.0. I have just bought a USB 2.0 NIC 10/100 I dont need the speed just yet, for the most part right now its a proof of concept, and a little project, I will soon get a switch which of course has VLANs. but ignoring the whole USB NICS… I dont care about the adapter sticking out sitting where ever, I just want to know if it will work well... I couldnt find any PCIe 16x (full size) NICS in Maplin electronics, they only do PCIe 1x. The only PCIe 16x Ethernet NICS I can find are stupid money if someone could find me one cheaper/reasonable price. As with the PCIe mini to ethernet can anyone tell me one that will work well with Pfsense?



  • PCI-e cards aren't any wider than they need to be.  A card with a single link is more than enough for a single 1Gbe port.



  • @Jason:

    PCI-e cards aren't any wider than they need to be.  A card with a single link is more than enough for a single 1Gbe port.

    Yeah I know, I was just wanting one to put into a PCIe 16x size slot, because I have the converter that converts PCIe mini to PCIe 16x … but I have seen that you can plug the small NIC into that slot and it will work fine apparently.

    Also for other people that would like to know, I just tested pfsense (2.1) with this USB NIC I just bought, and it shows up fine XD

    which is this - http://www.maplin.co.uk/p/usb-20-to-ethernet-adapter-a31gy



  • @ub3rz4ch:

    Yeah I know, I was just wanting one to put into a PCIe 16x size slot, because I have the converter that converts PCIe mini to PCIe 16x … but I have seen that you can plug the small NIC into that slot and it will work fine apparently.

    You're not going to find a 16x NIC unless it's got (4) 10Gbe ports on it, and even then, it might be 8x since PCI-e 2.0 and 3.0 have ramped up the speed considerably.  Mellanox's new dual-port 56Gbit/s cards only come with a 8x connector.

    You might also be interested to know that many cards which have a wider port will also work in a narrower slot assuming that it's open-ended.  I've got a quad-port i350 card in my system at home (see the 1st pic in the album below) and it's connected via a single PCI-e lane with an open-ended riser.  It doesn't matter because the system I'm using can only do 500-600Mbit/s through FW anyway.

    http://imgur.com/a/I0JbF



  • @Jason:

    @ub3rz4ch:

    Yeah I know, I was just wanting one to put into a PCIe 16x size slot, because I have the converter that converts PCIe mini to PCIe 16x … but I have seen that you can plug the small NIC into that slot and it will work fine apparently.

    You're not going to find a 16x NIC unless it's got (4) 10Gbe ports on it, and even then, it might be 8x since PCI-e 2.0 and 3.0 have ramped up the speed considerably.  Mellanox's new dual-port 56Gbit/s cards only come with a 8x connector.

    You might also be interested to know that many cards which have a wider port will also work in a narrower slot assuming that it's open-ended.  I've got a quad-port i350 card in my system at home (see the 1st pic in the album below) and it's connected via a single PCI-e lane with an open-ended riser.  It doesn't matter because the system I'm using can only do 500-600Mbit/s through FW anyway.

    http://imgur.com/a/I0JbF

    Ah okay fair enough, thanks.



  • You could just get an express card NIC, if your netbook has a slot.  Thats what I used for my netbook, works great.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ExpressCard



  • @droth1988:

    You could just get an express card NIC, if your netbook has a slot.  Thats what I used for my netbook, works great.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ExpressCard

    I've been searching for a Gig ExpressCard that works on on 2.1. Are you using a Gig card? If so, which one?



  • @droth1988:

    You could just get an express card NIC, if your netbook has a slot.  Thats what I used for my netbook, works great.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ExpressCard

    I have the slot yeah, but not got the card, moved onto a whole pc a friend gave me

    @rjcrowder:

    @droth1988:

    You could just get an express card NIC, if your netbook has a slot.  Thats what I used for my netbook, works great.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ExpressCard

    I've been searching for a Gig ExpressCard that works on on 2.1. Are you using a Gig card? If so, which one?

    Unfortunately I dont have one sorry :(, and am no longer using a netbook.