Gigabit Ethernet switches and network adaptors.

Felix Rauch rauch at
Fri Nov 23 08:51:33 PST 2001

On Mon, 19 Nov 2001, Velocet wrote:
> On Mon, Nov 19, 2001 at 10:00:46AM -0500, Steve Gaudet's all...
> > Here's some of the network GIG E hardware we'd like to recommend:
> > 
> >   AceNIC/NetGear GA620(T)/3C985B
> >   SysKonnect
> >   NS chipset:
> >      Cameo           SOHO-GA2000T    SOHO-GA2500T
> >      D-Link          DGE-500T
> >      PureData        PDP8023Z-TG
> >      SMC             SMC9462TX
> >      NetGear         GA622
> How do you find the performance of these NS82830 cards? Do they do
> block interupt xfer or whatever it is for more efficient xfer? How much
> system/interupt time do they chew up?

I don't know about the 82830, but a student in our group is working on
a (sepcial) driver for the DP83820 chip on an ASANTE GigaNIX
card. While the cards where cheap and have a rich feature set, there
are mainly two problems as far as we can see:

- The card has hardware bugs. The student discovered 3 bugs, but could
  fortunately work around them.

- The FIFOs on the card are very small (8 KB TX and 32 KB RX if I
  remember correctly). The student had to fiddle quite a bit with some
  of the parameters of the card to get acceptable performance. This
  might also be responsible for the relatively low throughput (it
  could also be the implementation of the DMA engine). The card seems
  unable to transfer more than about 70-80 MB/s _without_ any protocol
  stack (the senders driver just transmits the same data over and
  over, while the receiver simply marks received packets as
  `handled'). As a comparison: Our hamachi cards transfer more than
  100 MB/s _with_ TCP/IP on the same machines!
So, our experiences the DP83820 based cards are not the best, but they

- Felix
Felix Rauch                      | Email: rauch at
Institute for Computer Systems   | Homepage:
ETH Zentrum / RZ H18             | Phone: ++41 1 632 7489
CH - 8092 Zuerich / Switzerland  | Fax:   ++41 1 632 1307

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