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Cheapest dual port 10gbe network card

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Dec 22, 2018
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#1
I am looking to see what is the least expensive 10 gigabit dual port Ethernet card that is fully supported in FreeNAS 11.2 U5. It can be either copper or sfp+. I found the Intel X540-T2 but with the yottamark it is crazy expensive. I'm aware of the lesser expensive counterfeit cards on ebay so I need assistance on picking the right one.

The use case is for a direct connect (peer to peer) MPIO iSCSI connection with a Hyper-V host so I would get two cards.
 
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#3
No, I did not commit yet since no answers were given. That may be due to me inadvertently making myself look like an idiot on these forums, but I digress. 3rd party research suggests that Chelsio T520-BT is optimal but that card is more expensive than Intel. The most common runner-up appears to be Intel X540-T2.

Given the numerous costly mistakes I have made with my build, I didn't want to proceed any further until I heard some solid feedback.
 

danb35

FreeNAS Wizard
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#4
A used Chelsio T420 sounds like a good choice.
 

danb35

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#6
It's worked perfectly well under FreeNAS as well as various flavors of Linux I've used it with.
 
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#7
I saw some T420-CR models reasonably priced on ebay but didn't find T420E-CR specifically. Is there much difference between the two?
 

danb35

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#8
I'm not familiar with the details of the Chelsio model numbers, so I couldn't say for sure. The T4 indicates Chelsio's fourth-generation chipset, and the 2 indicates a two-port card, but beyond that I was looking for T4 cards with SFP+ connections.
 

Evi Vanoost

FreeNAS Aware
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#9
I purchased the X540-T2 from 10GTek on Amazon which is under $200. You can even get a refurb from any of the server parts shops (eg. a Dell or IBM branded X540-T2) for less than $150.

I prefer the Intel chipsets due to compatibility, not just at the driver level, which is important, but also the transceiver module if you do require the optics. Especially active copper wires which are insanely cheaper for short distances don't always work with the "other brands".

Also be careful of Realtek and other chips on eBay, some sell a "10G card" but the chipset is actually a 2.5Gbps or 5Gbps and the link won't go to 10Gbps. Synology pulls s**t like that and sells a rebranded Asus card as "10G" which doesn't negotiate to 10G (not like the Synology could ever push more than 2Gbps anyway) so unless you have a more expensive Cisco switch, cheaper switches won't negotiate down to 5Gbps or 2.5Gbps.
 
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