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Re: [OT] NIC 1000Base-SX needed

On Mon, 16 May 2011, Michelle Konzack wrote:
> I have to test a real bunch of servers, but unfortunately  the  Switches
> are equiped with 1000Base-SX (Singel Fiber) ports.

1000Base-SX is almost always connected through a pair of MM (multi-mode)
fibers, one for TX, one for RX.  Dual-cords have both fibers in the same
"cable", but there will be two fibers.

I've never seen anyone bother with CWDM (dual-color: TX and RX in the same
fiber) in 1000Base-SX, but it is possible.  And probably a waste of money,
as the CWDM optics are expensive when compared with small fiber cable runs
and will require SFP slots.

Don't use 1000Base-SX over single-mode fiber. *Really*.

> Can someone recommend me a PCI/PCI-X Network Adapter 1000Base-TX which I
> can get inexpensive from eBay  :-/  please?

Get a 1000-Base-SX NIC, not a TX one.  Otherwise, how will you connect it to
the switch?  Don't use SX-TX adaptors, they're crap and break easily.

SFP-based NICs will likely be far more expensive when you add the SFP optics
(but much better maintenance-wise, as you just need to replace the optics
when they burn out after 3-6 years of service).

I *heavily* recommend that you find a NIC based on the Intel 82576,
*especially* if any virtual machines are involved and the box they will be
running on is not old crap (i.e. it has MSI-X and SRIOV-capable PCIe

You really should have bought something else that had 1000-TX ports, though.
MM cabling is annoying, needs to be seated correctly and requires fiber
management accessories in the rack and careful handling if you don't want it
to degrade and start giving you link layer problems later on.  And you'll
pay easily twice *per link* when compared to a CAT6 one because you will
also need optics in the NICs.

Next time, get an Extreme, Juniper, Cisco, Enterasys, Force10 or other good
L2/L3 1000BaseTX switch should you not find your preferred HP/3COM switches
(which are just average stuff anyway).  IMHO, one would do better to spend
extra $$$ in a switch with much better functionality and support, than sink
it in opticial cabling and NICs that were not required in the first place.

  "One disk to rule them all, One disk to find them. One disk to bring
  them all and in the darkness grind them. In the Land of Redmond
  where the shadows lie." -- The Silicon Valley Tarot
  Henrique Holschuh

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