Recommendations on NICs used for Channel Bonding (concerns with Intel etherexpress)

Martin Siegert siegert at
Mon Feb 12 12:11:02 PST 2001

On Sun, Feb 11, 2001 at 03:34:24PM -0500, Tom Woo wrote:
> I'm looking to do channel bonding (2x) with 100BT switched ethernet
> involving about 64 machines.  The 3 test machines I currently have all have
> Intel Ether express Pros (INTEL ETHEREXPRESS PRO 10/100+ PCI PILA8460B)
> They all work great with channel bonding on redhat 6.2 and 7.0.  However,
> i've been told that for channel bonding these NICs may not be the best.
> Thus, I was wondering if anyone has any recommendations on what are the best
> NICs for channel bonding, or what NICs to avoid when channel bonding.
I've done tests of channel bonding using RealTek 8139, 3Com 905B,
D-Link DFE570Tx, and Intel Pro100+ (dual port, PILA8472). You find the test
results at

I did not encounter any problems with the Intel cards. Performancewise
their throughput is basically the same as the troughput for 3C905Bs, their
latencies are somewhat larger.

I do not have any experience with EEPro100 cards in a production environment
and under heavy load. There has been a discussion on this list a few weeks
ago about the reliability of the eepro100.o driver. I cannot comment on that.
I do have experience with the 3c905Bs: after the improvements in the 3c59x.o
driver that comes with the 2.2.17 and later kernels these NICs have been
rock solid with excellent performance.

If the # of PCI slots is a problem (1U and 2U cases) there is a 4 port
card by Matrox that uses the Intel chip. Unfortunately it is extremely
expensive (~ $800 CDN) and nobody has given me one yet for test purposes :-(


Martin Siegert
Academic Computing Services                        phone: (604) 291-4691
Simon Fraser University                            fax:   (604) 291-4242
Burnaby, British Columbia                          email: siegert at
Canada  V5A 1S6

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