On Wed, 15 Sep 2004, Jeff Garzik wrote:
Put simply, the "ultimate TOE card" would be a card with network ports, a
generic CPU (arm, mips, whatever.), some RAM, and some flash. This card's
"firmware" is the Linux kernel, configured to run as a _totally indepenent
network node_, with IP address(es) all its own.
Then, your host system OS will communicate with the Linux kernel running on
the card across the PCI bus, using IP packets (64K fixed MTU).
My dream is that some vendor will come along and implement such a
design, and sell it in enough volume that it's US$100 or less.
There are a few cards on the market already where implementing this
design _may_ be possible, but they are all fairly expensive.
The intel IXP's are like the above, XScale+extra-bits host-on-a-PCI
card running Linux. Or is that what you were referring to with
"<cards exist> but they are all fairly expensive."?
Paul Jakma paul@xxxxxxxx paul@xxxxxxxxx Key ID: 64A2FF6A
There is nothing so easy but that it becomes difficult when you do it
-- Publius Terentius Afer (Terence)