View Full Version : PCI vs. ISA Ethernet card

02-07-00, 10:47 PM
Most of this is a repost from my USB post...but I figured this is a whole new topic so post it that way...

I notice you can get both ISA and PCI NIC cards...now I assume the ISA ones would only work in windows (not in dos)... would there be a problem with this or am I backwards, out to lunch etc. Reason I ask is that both my PCI slots are full (1 with a 56k modem that I use about 2 times a year for faxes)...so do I lose anything by buying an ISA card, is it more expensive, more troublesome?

I could always buy a $20 winmodem (ISA slot right?) to get by on faxes and old dialup games I play occasionally.

02-07-00, 11:57 PM
ISA cards work both in DOS and Windows, and you shouldn't have any problems with them, they're capable of much faster transfers than your Cable/DSL feed. Most of the time ISA cards work just as well as PCI NICs, and are more stable than USB devices.

Moved topic to the Networking Forum.

02-25-00, 10:02 PM
Which works best for you depends on what else you've got installed in your system. If you're running out of IRQs, then going with ISA may make your life more difficult. Personally, I threw out all my old ISA stuff and went totally with PCI. Plug and Play works best with PCI devices. My theory is, if everything's PnP, Windows has the greatest likelihood of getting everything configured without my intervention.

02-26-00, 06:07 PM
Get a pci card unless you are expert at setting up isa cards. They can take a lot of patience to set up right w/out experience.

Trash the pci modem & get a cheap external modem. Install it & then disable it in device manager. Then enable it twice a year when you need to use it, or if high speed goes on the blink.

That'll give you the needed slot. There is always the option of a different motherboard...cpu...case...display card....sound...what da heck, looks like you're gonna get a new computer!

03-02-00, 01:05 AM
I went with the PCI NIC....the only remaining question I have is would windows be faster if I replaced my ISA Sound Blaster and ISA Modem with new PCI ones (or remove them)...ie. at startup do ISA components slow windows down a lot?

03-02-00, 06:20 AM
heres a few things to make boot up faster.. in bios enable quickboot, disable floppy seek (not boot sequence) in windows system properties, go to file system go to performance tab and uncheck "search for floppy....." you can disable virus check in bios to speed up too, i do, but thats up to you.. try these, it does make a difference. you can also disable stuff you dont need from loading at boot up to speed things up (start/run type msconfig go to startup uncheck things that dont have to load at bootup, you can always start them manually when you need them) i do all of these, no problems, but just in case DISCLAIMER: use at your own risk http://www.speedguide.net/ubb/eek.gif

03-04-00, 10:38 PM
Isa cards can be a pain if ya running out of IRQ's as they don't like (or can't) share IRQ's unlike PCI devices which can share IRQ's. On the whole PCI cards work better with Plug n Pray.

03-17-00, 10:22 PM
also, i thought only the 100Mbps cards are only availible in pci form and you could only get 10Mbps cards for isa.

also, i have heard that isa cards do slow down computer speed cause isa is more cpu dependent than the pci bridge.

"If it gets up and walks outta the refrigerator... let it."