Get an Ethernet Card (was Re: Has anyone got DSL working with a USB modem?)

Alex Satrapa grail at
Sun Sep 8 23:45:36 EST 2002

On Sunday, September 8, 2002, at 07:00 , bradh at wrote:

> You should look at the code. The UHCI chipset is pretty basic, but
> it all runs in DMA, and the overhead is pretty trivial on any reasonable
> machine (especially if the downstream load is something basic like
> a ADSL link).

It all adds up.  A little bit here for the USB support, a little bit 
there for the USB ethernet adaptor - that's processor time that could be 
better used supporting IPSec, or even just being idle (and therefore 

>> So get an Ethernet card - not just for your own sanity, but for the
>> sake of your DSL router's poor little overtaxed processor ;)
> Rubbish.

My router's processor gets very hot when transferring data over the ADSL 
through an OpenVPN tunnel.  I do not believe that my comment was totally 
frivolous.  But that discussion is best left for another thread.

> By contrast, a cheap ethernet card may require you to stuff around with 
> figuring out a driver.

Perhaps, but many ethernet cards are supported "out of the box" by most 
distributions anyway.

> ... so why buy more and stuff around with opening the case?

I don't mind "stuffing around with figuring out drivers" if it saves me 
all the cable jungle outside my PC.  Neat, orderly and efficient - I'd 
like to have an internal modem too, but I can't find one that's a real 
modem anymore (they're all WinModems these days).

If an Ethernet card is too expensive, then go ahead and find a kernel 
with "hotplug USB Ethernet" support built in.  I prefer distributing 
processing power through dedicated devices rather than using the one CPU 
to do all the work, so I'll stick to my dedicated Ethernet cards.

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