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Mobos with two network ports

Discussion in 'Motherboards & Memory' started by qubit, Sep 6, 2011.

  1. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    This is interesting, I dunno if this thread belongs in the mobo section or the network section, because it covers both. Anyway, the mobo section won, lol.

    For years I've had mobos with two network ports, but I've only ever needed one. I can't really think of a use for two either, except maybe as a switch or server running two different networks.

    Anyone use the dual ports and can describe a proper use for them?
     
  2. Radical_Edward

    Radical_Edward

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    I use them at my work because I have to maintain a connection to our network, while programming up our wireless equipment. It's very nice having two ports for that stuff.
     
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  3. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    So how do you direct network traffic through the right port then? Windows doesn't seem to have any way to distinguish.
     
  4. VulkanBros

    VulkanBros

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    I use my old Chrosshair mobo with 2 NIC´s as an Linux firewall/router
     
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  5. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    you cant, so you dont. you use it for faillover, or for a secondary connection such as ICS.
     
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  6. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    you can bond them together to make them act as one which improves effeciency through load balancing and fault tolerance.

    or you can connect to two different networks (use one as a firewall or a bridge) in which you would have to route packets to that ip. i believe in windows the cmd is ROUTE ADD but you would have to check on that.
     
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  7. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    the bonding/load balancing requires a managed switch with setup support for it however, or it doesnt work (it CAN be done without it - but its nearly useless)
     
  8. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Yes, another word for bonding is teaming if I remember correctly. I'm sure I saw that in the mobo manual, now I think about it.
     
  9. Altered

    Altered

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    Does this bonding/load balancing actually do anything for a FPS gamer? I was trying to see how you could tell if it actually effected speeds or quality of a normal single non bonded setup. I tried to find info on this a while back but nothing definitive.

    I was looking for a use for the other network port as the OP was. :confused:
     
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  10. DanishDevil

    DanishDevil

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    I think if you've got Gigabit ports and a decent connection, teaming probably won't net you any benefits. Just a guess, though. A quick Google search says it won't help.
     
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  11. Mussels

    Mussels Moderprator Staff Member

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    no, zero benefit whatsoever.
     
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  12. Easy Rhino

    Easy Rhino Linux Advocate

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    ive heard good things and bad about using software on the OS to bond the two devices. i bet a lot of that has to do with whatever drivers are available and the application doing the load balancing.

    if you have some decent bonding software you could see a slight improvement in your ping. probably about as much as having a killernic, which for some people is useless.

    im not really sure why mobo manufacturers are putting 2 ethernet ports on their desktop boards. i guess they think the network chipsets on them are shit and they want to make sure they have 2?
     
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  13. digibucc

    digibucc

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    i have two separate networks i am connected to, both with their own internet connection.
    if i'm quick about it, i can make windows 7 use both to download something, with a download manager - not with firefox/ie native downloads.

    load balancing routers, etc have more to do with when you are hosting something, not with when you are downloading. it really does nothing for end users.

    it also enables you to share your connection with another machine, if you don't have ports/are to far from your router, or no wireless for example. or no wireless card on the second machine.
     
  14. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Marketing?

    Judging from the answers here, it's not a particularly useful feature to have on your average desktop PC and is a bit like fitting a gig of RAM on a bottom end graphics card that can't make proper use of it.
     
  15. digibucc

    digibucc

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    well, i have had and made use of it on the last 4 pcs i have built, so i would have to disagree.

    before using it for work, i used it at home to share network connections. i can see how not using it may make you feel that it is useless, but that is simply not the case.

    your analogy is off as the motherboard CAN make use of it, and users DO.
     
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  16. ensabrenoir

    ensabrenoir

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    Wondered the same thing. The box always says dual ethernet ports. Maybe they're trying to equate it to dual exhaust which helps with horsepower. The unlearned may think this helps with their online gaming.
     
  17. KieranD

    KieranD

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    Connecting a laptop or other pc to share an internet connection. I used to do this with my xbox 360 till i bought a wireless access point.
     
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  18. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    Yes, I saw your post and thought you might disagree. :toast:

    Obviously, it is of great use to you, but it's still a feature with a niche benefit, which is what I'm getting at. Heck, I'll bet those low end graphics cards with a ton of RAM on them will also show a benefit under particular circumstances (I have no idea which) but once again, it would be a niche benefit for a small number of users.

    This is why I think features like these are more about marketing than offering something genuinely useful to differentiate the product.
     
  19. digibucc

    digibucc

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    oh fair enough, i can agree with that.

    but i also think it's a minimal expense, which potentially is a great benefit. if they can through another one in for a few bucks, me and other niche buyers will consider it. I will not consider a mobo without 2 nics, however i don't need a server board or something professional.

    i don't think it's necessary on your average $100~ board, but if spend $200+ on a board i expect it to have 2.
     
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  20. Jizzler

    Jizzler

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    ^ True. When I was looking at 990 boards in anticipation of Bulldozer last month, I only found
    one with dual ports. If I go with BD when released, ASRock will be getting this niche buyers money.
     
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  21. Altered

    Altered

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    This was/is a great thread pretty much answered my questions. I understand from lurking around here some of the guys really know stuff. But for the end user not following TPU members closely realizing who may really have some knowledge, has anyone with the hardware to do this actually benchmarked the difference? I am not really sure how you would do this and show the difference in non bonded vs bonded. But some sort of concrete testing would sure put the theory to bed for good.

    As for the OP I agree. I think features like these are more about marketing as well. If you ask 100 users of boards in the $100 - $200 range what their second port was hooked to I have a serious belief it aint hooked to squat. Not that there are not some like Jizzler and digibucc but I believe they are a very low %. Still useful but not a must have for the majority. But hey I am all for features if they can throw them in for a minimal cost. Who knows with technology they may become extremely handy at some time.
     
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