Intel D945GSE vs Zotac ION ITX (was: Support for Zotac MB with nVidia ION chipset)

Jeremie Le Hen jeremie at
Sun Apr 4 21:55:07 UTC 2010


--->> Cc: me when replying, as I'm not subscribed. <<---

I cross-post this reply to freebsd-hardware@ since the result of my
little study around Atom-based motherboard may be of interest for
readers of this ML too.

On Sun, Apr 04, 2010 at 03:00:09PM -0600, Tim Judd wrote:
> On 4/4/10, Jeremie Le Hen <jeremie at> wrote:
> > Hi,
> >
> > --->> Please Cc: me when replying, I'm not subscribed. <<---
> >
> > I plan to purchase a Zotac motherboard with a embedded ATOM processor.
> > It uses an NVidia chipset.
> >
> >
> >
> > My intent is to build a small NAS with ZFS and NFS/CIFS.  I'd like to
> > know if anyone successfully ran FreeBSD on this motherboard and what
> > performance could be achieved, especially if ZFS is used.  I checked the
> > archives without luck.
> A NAS w/ ZFS, NFS and CIFS/SMB, doesn't need any feature of the ion
> chipset.  Why are you electing for this board if you're not running
> any graphical environment?
> And ZFS is memory hungry, the Atom is a i386-like chip, so you'd have
> too much overhead with ZFS.
> I think you've elected the wrong board for your purposes.  Will
> FreeBSD run on it?  yes.  I have freebsd on another atom N-series ASUS
> box.

Yeah, you are right.  I should have mentionned that I do not want
necessarily a high-performance NAS, it's for home use so my premary
concern is the low power consumption.  This is why I want an Atom-based
motherboard.  By the way, I found an post on OpenSolaris forums where
the author achieves something like 35MB/s on a ZFS filesystem through
CIFS using an Intel Atom-based motherboard [1].  This is enough for the
use I intend to have.

Zotac mobo is better than Intel D954GSE because it provides a wireless
interface - although I couldn't figure out which chipset yet, so I don't
know if it's corretly supported on FreeBSD - and three S-ATA connectors.

I'm still not sure about which motherboard to buy actually.  After some
additional reading, my leaning seems to go towards Intel's one as it is
less expensive and consumes half the power of the Zotac's one (13W with
a HDD [2] vs. 25W [3]).  I can live with two S-ATA connectors and I can
plug a wireless interface on the available PCI connector if I ever need


Jeremie Le Hen

Humans are born free and equal.  But some are more equal than others.

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