Joined on 06/26/03
Pros: All Intel chips including the built in network cards as it should be. Running FreeNAS great with 16GB of RAM. Internal port is USB3. Plug your FreeNAS on USB to USB2 on the back and set tunable variable xhci_load to YES to be able to boot from the internal USB3 header. Flash your BIOS with the latest one from Supermicro site. Had issues with the stock BIOS where it would freeze on boot screen when some settings changed in BIOS. Had to reset CMOS to get it to boot again. Used memory from NewEgg: Kingston 8GB 204-Pin DDR3 SO-DIMM ECC Unbuffered DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Server Memory Model KVR16LSE11/8
Cons: The CPU heatsink is a bit small and not really designed to be passively cooled. It needs at least some air movement inside the case.
Lots of features, terrible memory support.
Pros: Has a lot of features in a small package for a nice developer workstation. Sound chip is pretty good. Shipped with 2.30 BIOS which supports Xeon E3 v6. My build: ASRock C236 WSI Kingston KVR24E17D8/16(MA) , 32GB total (ECC) SAMSUNG 960 PRO M.2 512GB NVMe PCI-Express M.2 NVMe SSD NGFF TO PCIE 3.0 X16 /X4 adapter Intel Xeon E3-1275 V6 Kaby Lake 3.8 GHz Noctua NH-L12S 70mm low-profile CPU cooler LIAN LI PC-Q07B LG WH16NS40 350W ATX PSU, fan facing CPU. I used PCIE adapter for NVMe SSD and GPU provided by CPU. Running Windows 10 Pro.
Cons: Terrible memory support, I blame BIOS bugs. I got Kingston with Hynix modules and MB would only boot with A1 slot populated, but not with both or B1 slot. I got replacement MB and the same behavior. I got replacement from Kingston with Micron modules and could barely boot with 2.40 BIOS. Over the months I noticed random instant restarts with "kernel lost power" in the event viewer and can't pinpoint the problem. Ran memtest and Intel CPU diagnostics tools and burn in, all pass. William from ASRock is responsive and sent me new BIOS versions to test including 2.60 which didn't boot. I found that I could only boot with B1 memory slot populated and not with A1 or both populated. What I found interesting in all cases is if I boot with only one slot populated and then in BIOS change memory speed from 2400MHz to 2133MHz, then MB boots with all slots populated and with all tested BIOS versions. If you flush BIOS, all settings are lost and you are forced to do memory pulling again. Look up reviews for ASRock E3C236D2I on NewEgg. Others have similar issues and the MB seems to be coming from the same designs. This MB has slight coil whine, noticeable if you have no moving parts in your computer.
Overall Review: I do NOT recommend this MB to anyone. I wanted to build a tiny workhorse, but the amount of time spent debugging it is just not worth it. It is almost impossible to find comparable feature set in Mini ITX form factor from other manufacturers. If I had to do it again, I would just go with Micro ATX from Supermicro.
Great mobo for FreeNAS 11.2
Pros: Very fast for a 4 core CPU. Using Kingston KVR24E17D8/16, 32GB total. FreeNAS 11.2 runs great on it with attached 4x4TB WD Red disks and 2 NVME SSD drives. Booting from NVME.
Cons: PCIE lanes are shared with SATA ports, you have to make selection for number of SATA ports or lanes in BIOS.
Pros: This case is well built, except for the front panel buttons which are loose, but you can easily fix it. Also, the HD mounting is kinda cra**y, you have to make sure the drives don't fall out. Anyway, I couldn't find any better case.
Overall Review: This case has the best ventilation you could possibly have.