On Oct 11, 2010, at 8:57 PM, Tony Yarusso <tonyyarusso at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Mon, Oct 11, 2010 at 6:28 PM, Josh Paetzel <josh at tcbug.org> wrote:
>> mini-ITX form factor atoms are really moving in on this space.  For $100
>> cheaper than I could get a soekris 5501 I got a dual core 1.6 ghz atom, with
>> dual gigE ethernet.  You can get very small mini-ITX cases that just use a 12
>> volt power brick.  My system pulls 20 watts a idle, almost entirely due to the
>> 2.5" laptop hard drive it has.
> It's true.  The early Atoms had a less-than-impressive heat/power
> profile, but they've improved that significantly in recent revisions,
> so now I'm considering picking up one of these for a router system,
> which is a fanless board with dual gigE:
> http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813182233
> - Tony

And that's a fairly expensive atom board. :)

Mine is slightly older (330). It shows up to the OS as 4 cpus, dual core 1.6 ghz with hyperthreading.  It's just powerful enough to tempt me to do compiles on it. Make buildworld of FreeBSD 8 is a mere 5 hours. (It's 11 minutes on my dual 2.26ghz Nehalem) 

In some ways it's just fast enough for me to treat it as a regular system as opposed to an embedded device. (Which is what I use it as)

In the end though what really sold me was the gigE ethernet ports. While my WAN connection can't saturate 100TX *today* it won't be long before it can. My current cable modem has a gigE port, and I see comcast is advertising a 105mbps connection now. 

Josh Paetzel