Recommendations for NICs?

Nathan Vidican nathan at
Thu Jan 21 19:07:24 UTC 2010

Personally, I've had the best success with fxp and em cards (Intel), and the
worst with broadcom-based on-board nics, but have tried and worked with many
different cards over the years on FreeBSD. Hands-down though, I prefer
Intel's NIC offerings.

IIRC - Intel contributed to the development and supports the fxp driver too,
so I've always tried to send my business to the vendor which supports my
specific use of their product rather than the one which expects me or
requires me to rely solely on the reverse-engineering and support of the
open-source community to figure it out themselves. To me, I feel a whole lot
'safer' with the knowledge that the hardware manufacturer knows and
understands my application better than the next guy (cough* insert plug for
Apple anyone?).

Just my opinion and experience though - I offer no technical merit as I've
honestly not bothered to try anything else in recent years (habitually stick
with what works I guess).

Nathan Vidican
nathan at

On Thu, Jan 21, 2010 at 12:27 PM, John <john at> wrote:

> This used to be a hot topic long ago, but now seems to have become
> rather dormant.  Does that mean that all NICs are pretty much
> commodity with all the good features (unaligned scatter/gather,
> etc), or does it just mean that machine performance has grown to
> the point where we don't care anymore?  The hardware.html page
> tells me what may owrk, but not what may work WELL.  The on-board
> NIC uses the fxp driver.  Should I look for another card that uses
> the same driver?  Are those good, or are both good and "bad" cards
> supproted by the same driver?  The list doesn't give any of the
> featuers which used to be assocaited with "good" or "bad" cards -
> just the names.
> Thanks!
> --
> John Lind
> john at starfire.MN.ORG
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