Intel Acquires Killer NIC

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Deleted member 134608

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Other than the first or second product release, "Killer" hasnt used its own hardware at all. They were bought and just used basic Qualcomm stuff. Now Intel bought them so they will probably just use basic Intel stuff going forward. The company was nothing more than a bloated software interface for basic driver tweaks we all already had. The whole bypassing network stack and programmable network processing unit were dead beyond the first product releases.

I suspect Intel has been licensing someone's QOS engine and that company bumped up their renewal fees, so they just went out and bought Killer instead. Just a guess though.
 

Meeho

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Aug 16, 2010
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I had the "killer nic" software stack on Qualcomm hardware, it was interesting since it allowed you to managed bandwidth QoS / throughput caps between different applications running in windows, though this is very different than the original killer nic with the whole dedicated coprocessor. However the drivers always seemed to cause issues after sleep/suspend and I ended up going back to the stock qualcomm drivers. If it worked reliably, it could be useful if you had network contention on your PC and you did everything on it, but I have all my downloading/streaming on a different box, and QoS handled at the firewall.
cFosSpeed did it before and is hardware agnostic.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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Oct 29, 2000
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Killer NICs have been around since 2007 or earlier, if I remember right, and even back then while the hardware was very good itself, I remember the software stack and drivers being absolutely terrible.
Even by the late 2000s, the performance improvements using their NICs was minimal compared to Intel's then-offerings, was far more expensive, and the high-CPU overhead from their software/drivers negated any gains that the NIC itself made (slightly lower latencies).

I do have to say that the NIC itself was pretty awesome looking for the time.

The hardware and the software are both part of the product. It does not matter which was at fault, unless both work perfectly, the product is a fail.

Also, their product was complete and utter snake oil from the start. There is no way a NIC can improve gaming, no matter how fancy, except for rate corner cases where the traffic the game is comparing with is originating from background processes running on the same PC.

Even if it had been executed perfectly, it never had any hope what so ever of doing what it claimed it was going to do.

Killer is the very poster child for delusional gaming brand hype with nothing to back it up.
 

PhaseNoise

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May 11, 2005
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The hardware and the software are both part of the product. It does not matter which was at fault, unless both work perfectly, the product is a fail.

Also, their product was complete and utter snake oil from the start. There is no way a NIC can improve gaming, no matter how fancy, except for rate corner cases where the traffic the game is comparing with is originating from background processes running on the same PC.

Even if it had been executed perfectly, it never had any hope what so ever of doing what it claimed it was going to do.

Killer is the very poster child for delusional gaming brand hype with nothing to back it up.

The one case where they had great (intitial) success was actually because they simply disabled the nagle dwell algorithm in their driver unconditionally.
WoW uses TCP, so folks saw much lower latencies as a result of this. Before everyone realized that's all it was, they had a little spurt of popularity in the community.

But then blizzard saw this, realized the issue, and added TCP_NODELAY to their own socket connections. And thus, all cards magically had lower latency.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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Oct 29, 2000
Messages
31,211
The one case where they had great (intitial) success was actually because they simply disabled the nagle dwell algorithm in their driver unconditionally.
WoW uses TCP, so folks saw much lower latencies as a result of this. Before everyone realized that's all it was, they had a little spurt of popularity in the community.

But then blizzard saw this, realized the issue, and added TCP_NODELAY to their own socket connections. And thus, all cards magically had lower latency.


I forgot hat there were games that actually used TCP.

I have come to think of gaming network traffic as all UDP all the time.
 

Trimlock

[H]F Junkie
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Sep 23, 2005
Messages
15,225
Interesting concept initially that didn’t really blow up the market. Then seeing integrated NIC’s destroy add-in’s they essentially became a software package company. I have a board from a gen or two ago with killer on it and honestly, I had an easier time RealTek.

what surprises me is Intel already has a deep networking portfolio so I don’t get the big upside to owning them.
 

FrgMstr

Just Plain Mean
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I am pretty sure HardOCP was the only site to ever actually test the tech with professional gamers. Fun times.
 
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