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 From:  Lee Sharp <leesharp at hal dash pc dot org>
 To:  m0n0wall at lists dot m0n0 dot ch
 Subject:  Re: [m0n0wall] em driver performance
 Date:  Sun, 01 May 2011 16:45:49 -0400
On 05/01/2011 04:28 PM, James L. Lauser wrote:
> Hi.
> I have a m0n0wall system configured with a Pentium III 933 MHz CPU and
> three network interfaces (Intel Pro/100 (fxp driver) for the WAN, and a
> dual-interface Pro/1000 (em driver) for the LAN and DMZ). When
> transferring data between the LAN and DMZ subnets, I'm seeing somewhat
> odd performance.
> With polling _OFF_, I can move about 200 Mbits/sec (clocked with iperf)
> between subnets before pegging the CPU. This is not completely
> unexpected. When I turn polling on, however, throughput DROPS to about
> 140 Mbits/sec, with CPU topping out at about 60%.

What is it plugged into?  You may be maxing out the buss if it is PCI, 
old style.  Polling generates more traffic on the buss.