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Forum: FPGA, VHDL & Verilog recommend me an FPGA card for networking


von Nulik N. (nulik)


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Hi,
I am having a hard time finding an inexpensive FPGA card for networking 
applications. I have to develop an appliance for web cache proxy, so I 
need to implement TCP/IP stack and HTTP 1.1 protocol. Probably ethernet 
framing if the card doesn't include any ethernet contoller.
What cards would you recommend me with 1GBit/s interface ?
I know that 10Gbit would be better, but I can not pay 5K for such a 
card.

Thanks in advance for your comments.
Nulik

von Frank (Guest)


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Do you know the Teresic DE0-Nano-SoC-Board?

http://www.terasic.com.tw/cgi-bin/page/archive.pl?Language=English&No=941

It contains an Cyclone V SoC with a FPGA Part and a HPS Part 
(Hardprocessor ARM A9).
So you can use the HPS & Linux for TCP and HTTP and the FPGA for the 
realtime stuff.

von Nulik N. (nulik)


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Frank wrote:
> Do you know the Teresic DE0-Nano-SoC-Board?
>
> http://www.terasic.com.tw/cgi-bin/page/archive.pl?Language=English&No=941
>

Ups, sorry, my bad. I forgot to tell, that I have to insert into the PCI 
express slot on the motherboard, so the interface must be PCI Express, 
but the transfer can be PCI x1

von Nulik N. (nulik)


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Frank wrote:
> Do you know the Teresic DE0-Nano-SoC-Board?
>
> http://www.terasic.com.tw/cgi-bin/page/archive.pl?Language=English&No=941
>

It is exactly the card I need , it has 1GB of ram 925MHz clock is enough 
to do all packet processing , networking stuff, and offset to the CPU 
disk & storage management, logging, statistics and dynamic request 
handling...
But too bad it has no way to communicate with the CPU :(

von Nulik N. (nulik)


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>> Do you know the Teresic DE0-Nano-SoC-Board?

I have browsed a lot of boards, but very few have PCI x1 support, and 
PCI Express is much more expensive.  So a question comes to mind:

would USB work to handle traffic from eight 1 GBit ethernet cards on a 
motherboard without bottleneck?

There are a lot of SoCs with ethernet and USB under 100 bucks. So it 
would require 800 USD to make a server capable to handle almost 10Gbit 
traffic. But a 10Gigabit PCI express card would cost above 2,500 USD. 
And a 1Gbit Pci express card would cost above 1,200. So, many cheap SoCs 
will by way outperform large specialized card in price/performance , 
because besides 1 RJ45 and USB they have 1 GB of RAM. A specialized 
10GBit card will never include 8 GBytes of RAM, it would become 
prohibitely expensive.

1 USB controller can handle 3 Gbit/sec , so it would manage traffic for 
3 ethernet cards, additional USB v3.0 controller costs around 30 bucks, 
so it is very cheap. But the question is , would USB protocol be enough 
reliable? Seems to me like not very serious protocol for server 
applications, more like a Desktop oriented. But is this really true? 
Because manufacturers for server hardware charge lots of money for their 
solutions and I am not fully believing it is really worth it.

What do you think?
Thanks in advance
Nulik

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