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schoondoggy

Dual 2.5GbE low profile NIC

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schoondoggy

Not a fan of Realtek, but I just picked up one of these for $39.99. It is working fine under Windows 10. Fits in the HPE MS Gen10 PCIe x1 slot.

I am running it at 1GbE for now, looking at QNAP or Netgear Nbase-T switch to test 2.5GbE.

 

https://www.sybausa.com/index.php?route=product/product&path=64_144_157&product_id=1039

 

 

There is a single port for $29.99:

https://www.sybausa.com/index.php?route=product/product&path=64_144_157&product_id=1029

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ShadowPeo

Realtek are like Dell Networking, good for the price, certainly no Intel, Cisco or alike but hey, beggars cannot be choosers. I am more interested in seeing some bigger switches come out with a Copper/SFP+ split of something in the order of 12/12 put 6A into the servers rather than the Twin Axial (TwinAx) cable. Then its simply a matter of changing network cards for mGig > 10G. Gives some of the other devices such as NAS's a chance to use the lower speed connections rather than jumping straight to 10G. Don't know why you wouldn't go straight to 10G but hey

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schoondoggy

Wireless networking vendors are using 2.5GbE and 5GbE in their WAP's to leverage the existing copper cable installed at end users, while delivering faster WAP. Those vendors are offer switches with more Nbase-T, but they are a little pricey as they are POE.

 

https://meraki.cisco.com/products/switches/ms355-48x

https://www.netgear.com/business/products/switches/managed/m4200.aspx

https://www.qnap.com/en-uk/product/qsw-1208-8c

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schoondoggy

I tend to go straight to 10GbE, but it depends on use case and budget. Aruba S2500 switches with four 10GbE SFP+ ports have met my needs and they are around $100. Mellanox ConnectX-3 10GbE SFP+ NICs work very well and dual port versions are $35. My cable needs are short runs, a few feet from server to switch, so direct attach copper SFP+ cables have worked well, usually I can find compatible cables for $10-$15.

If someone needs a longer cable run at faster than 1GbE speed, MGig 2.5GbE or 5GbE over Cat6a, could make sense.

If someone does not want the noise and heat of a enterprise switch, the QNAP may be a more acceptable route to faster than 1GbE speeds. 

If you are looking to maximize throughput, but you only have a PCIe x1 slot available, this could be a solution.

In the end I believe it is, needs analysis versus budget through understanding the options that are available.

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ShadowPeo

Oh I agree on needs analysis I just think it is a better upgrade path to 10 especially on the back end. Existing cabling issue I get, the fact that most switches however do not bundle it with 10GBE bothers me a little. a couple of the ones I have seen (Cisco) do do 1/2.5/5/10 on the one port so upgrade path is clear but not on the Dell's for example which means full infrastructure replacement (yet again). Just my thought process, though. Short term pain for long term gain.

 

I also get that noise could be an issue, but I cannot comment on that as I run full racks both at work and at home so they are isolated (although the damned UPS beep still pierces everything)

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