Recommendation for 1000BASE-SX card?

Ted Mittelstaedt tedm at
Thu Jun 1 17:01:30 PDT 2006

>-----Original Message-----
>From: owner-freebsd-questions at
>[mailto:owner-freebsd-questions at]On Behalf Of Chuck Swiger
>Sent: Thursday, June 01, 2006 8:24 AM
>To: danial_thom at
>Cc: questions at
>Subject: Re: Recommendation for 1000BASE-SX card?

>Very well, let me put it another way: if your opinions about 
>what's wrong 
>differ from most other people, you might do better to rely on a 
>involving facts rather than opinions. 

Or, it could simply be that he's not doing what most people
are doing, so he is going to run into trouble that most people
don't run into.

>I mention this because 
>some people 
>regard their own opinions so highly that they don't seem to be 
>aware that 
>other approaches exist and might even prove effective.

Like you?

>> Clearly there are drivers that are well
>> supported and drivers that aren't. There are
>> people out there trying to run their businesses
>> and you seem to want to pretend that everything
>> is just peachy and that everything can be tweaked
>> and tuned a bit to be usable.
>I don't know about either the OP or your situation(s),

Then, pray tell, don't comment.  Instead thank your lucky stars
that you have not had to deal with that kind of problem.

> but I'm 
>generally of 
>the opinion that FreeBSD works just fine, most of the time, on 
>most hardware, 
>without any specific tweaking or tuning to be entirely usable.

It does not.  In reality, current versions of FreeBSD work better
on current versions of hardware.  FreeBSD has a terrible history
of breaking things that used to work on old hardware, then
when someone complains that something is broken, the developers
in effect tell them their old hardware is crappy junk and to buy new

Try running FreeBSD 6.X on a 80486 or Pentium system.  FreeBSD 4.11
runs just fine on that hardware, if a bit slowly.  But, I don't need
speed to control my garden sprinklers.

Now, it is true that sometimes backwards compatibility can hurt you,
it can cause you to maintain interfaces and structures that conflict
with support of new hardware, it can sometimes put you into 
situations that cannot be automatically resolved, thus you have to
create a knob for the user to twaddle one way or another, depending
on what hardware they have or what they want to do.  It can suck
off developer time to maintain old junk that only a few people use,
instead of putting in support for new crap that a lot of people use.
So there is a balance beam of too much backwards compatability
and not enough of it.  Microsoft is most definitely way far on the
side of bending over backwards to support everything, but most people
don't realize that FreeBSD is way far on the other side of sacrificing
hardware support at the drop of a hat when people lose interest
in it.

>That's true of some other platforms, such as Apple hardware and 
>MacOS X, or 
>even Sun/SPARC boxes, as well.  YMMV.

Total apples and oranges comparison, not relevant to anything.

>If you have specific problems or a FreeBSD-driver to Windows-driver 
>performance comparison, providing #'s and enough details to 
>reproduce would be 

That has been done with the Broadcom driver exhaustively in the
PR database, there's at least a dozen PRs on problems related
to that chip.  However it has not resulted in much code to fix
the problem, or even interest among committers to apply the fixes
that have been posted.  So no, I don't think that doing that
is helpful at all.  In fact, I really think the PR system has
gotten pretty much broken these days, there's too many bugs and
not enough people working on them, and more coming in every

What is needed is some developers putting some time into 
knocking down the bugs in the PR database, but instead we have
the foundation dumping money into funding students on projects
like "The Summer of Code" which basically ends up creating a lot
of half-finished efforts that may or may not eventually get
integrated into the operating system at some point down the road.

Nobody wants to fix other people's bugs, that's boring stuff,
that is the one area of Open Source where commercial software
companies have a leg up over us.  A commercial company can find
some starving programmer and pay him, then put a manager over him to
keep jerking the paycheck string to keep him on task to do the
icky programming.  Open Source has real difficulty with the concept
that some things in it are broken, rather ickely broken, and
totally un-fun to work on, and the only way your going to get
them fixed is by whipping some slave until they do the filthy
task.  People would rather spend the gold that they have on
nice, pleasant projects that treat everyone nicely and look good
on Resumes, and are not icky, nasty, uncomfortable things to
do that make you late for dinner.


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