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1000mbps Router
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TOPIC: 1000mbps Router
#35104
1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
Hi everybody,

I live in HK and some ISP provides 1000Mbps broadband, recently I have upgraded to one of them.
On testing the throughput, directly connect my server to the modem, I can get the speed reach 900Mbps, which is pretty good.

While after passing through my router, Buffalo WZR-HP-G300NH, it drops to only 130Mbps.
This is understandable as I have studied a bit for the capability of router handling a large bandwidth, so I actually planned to build my a X86 router for the job.

As planned, my router will be using either Atom D525(D2700 if available in a short moment) or AMD E-350 as CPU which is embedded onboard;
together with the lan port with Realtek controller, additionally an Intel Pro 1000 CT will be installed; RAM will be 2 or 4GB depends on budget; WiFi will be settled by using an USB WiFi adapter.

However, I do not know if the above set up would really suffice the need.
I have discussed with my friends that they guarantee the above set up will be enough, but rarely I can see someone testing this bandwidth on a X86 router.
Also, which router software is suggested? I heard MikroTik RouterOS is one of the best available but it costs, I want to suppress the cost of the router to <$179 USD.
Reading from m0n0wall's doc, it won't use more than 64MB RAM on my regardless of loading.......will this be an issue at all?
Recently I planned to give ClearOS a shot, do you have any idea on its possible performance?

The spec maybe as below(subjected to change as none was bought except the NIC)

CPU : Intel Atom D525/D2700/Celeron G440
Ram : Kingston DDR3 1333 2G~4GB
Storage : Flash Drive/Harddisk
NIC : Using Atom boards-Realtek 8111X, Using Intel H61 Board-Intel 82579V; and another Intel Pro 1000 CT

If you have more ideas on the spec, please feel free to let us know.

Thank you so much for your attention.

*This post was first made on Anandtech forums, after the reminder of the members, I realize that I should ask it on a more suitable location like a Router OS community, thus forwarded here. You may refer to the below link for some previous discussion, thank you.
forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2207926
nexusN
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#35177
Re:1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
I'm not an expert on this stuff, but if your second NIC is not in a PCI-Express slot (or embedded onto the board with access to the PCI-E bus) I think your performance will suffer.
Bob Stangarone
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#35182
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
About E350, it wont work with ClearOS 5.2 coz lack of drivers.
About D525, it's connected to onboard PCIe Realtek 8111 but becoz its atom, low internal transport system, u wont have full 1000mbps. U cant even reach 800mbps. In my test, I can only get around 600-700mbps at onboard PCIe, and I cant even get 600mbps at PCI Intel GBe. If u make it working together, 1 as input, the other as output, u can see so dam low throughput with intel atom boards. So my opinion is, forget atom unless u really want low power instead of speed
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#35184
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
Thank you for your sharing of 1000Mbps routing on Atom board, that is what I have been looking for.
That's why I have to make it sure before any purchases, although so many people do think that Atom or E-350 will be enough, the story is not necessarily as thought.

If I am to build the router, it must be able to fully utilize the bandwidth or it would be a waste of time and money, thank you for pointing out the capability!
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#35193
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
If you have an r8111 based card you will need to use the r8168 drivers from Realtek (compile your own) or use Tim's pre-compiled kmod ones here.

I also agree keep away from PCI cards and go for PCI-E because of the extra bandwidth on the bus. The R8111 is effectively an internal PCI-E.

I am surprised at easyspot's speed issues and it could be an atom thing. My server is a clock limited A 5050e system, generally running at 1000MHz (but limited to 1800MHz) and like that my dual port PCI-E Intel card is able to support speeds at over 900Mbps using iperf (I can't remember the exact figure as I have not tested for a couple of years as it is comfortably faster than my LAN PC's disk so not a bottleneck). I have not tested my R8111 embedded card as I have a 10Mbps WAN connection which it can manage in its sleep.

FWIW my clock limited A5050e with a dual port WAN card, 2.5" disk and pico-PSU generally runs at 30-35w. It boots at just under 100W until the speed limiting kicks in. I saw an article on SilentPCReview about a new i5 unit they built in a similar way and got to idle at under 25W, so you can build boxes with standard components to run at fairly low power with the advantage that they are mulit-core and fully x64 capable.
Nick Howitt
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Last Edit: 2011/12/01 05:23 By NickH.
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#35289
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
Hi Nick,

Thanks for the sharing,
for Lan card, I am not so sure but probably I will get an onboard solution as well a PCI-E Intel CT,
so maybe I have to study the driver.

While for your speed, is it a LAN to LAN throughput?
If so, that maybe a different story. Although I am not very familiar with the networking stuff, my experience told me LAN to LAN is much less demanding than WAN to LAN/LAN to WAN.
For example, my Buffalo now in use can maintain throughput between my notebook and server for ~ 900Mbps,
while when it comes to a WAN to LAN case, the throughput via router drops to smaller than 150Mbps.
Even I directly connect my notebook to the modem, the speed won't exceed 500Mbps, only my server can actually fully utilize the bandwidth to push to 900Mbps.

I say so as you mentioned that you are on a 10Mbps WAN, you may not be able to check the true capability of your x86 router.
Still, I am looking for more ideas, actually from pfsense community, many mentioned that they have already discussed a lot on 1000Mbps router and ATOM won't have the job done:
forum.pfsense.org/index.php?topic=43536.new;topicseen#new
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#35290
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
It is relatively easy to test the Server-LAN performance using iperf which is what I measured. It is not quite LAN-LAN but does not use the firewall much. I guess you could measure the WAN-LAN performance one way by connection a PC to the WAN and another to the LAN. I'm not sure my other PC supports full Gb speeds as it uses a PCI LAN card and it will take me a while to reconfigure the network so it is not really on the cards for the moment.

From my understanding the basic firewall has relatively little impact on throughput. The killers are the IDS/IPS and things like QoS. Anything which is processor intensive. That may also include the L7 filter as well but I don't know.

I looked at the Passmark comparisons in your pfsense and my A 5050e has virtually twice the power of D525 and it's recent replacement, something like the 240e does even better. Following the logic of the pfsense thread, it should be able to cope with your required throughput and it is much cheaper than the i3. Unfortunately, without changing my network significantly I can't check.
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#35304
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
Thanks for looking up and the suggestion,
if so I may take Passmark also as a reference for capability.

Actually It would be possible that I get a G530+H61 board for the CPU part as they are also not really expensive.
The problem would be on the TDP, which is another quite critical point I am digging from Atom.

Recently there is no T version of G530, and the ordinary G530 has a TDP of 65W, which pushed the system loading consumption to around 70-80W.
This number doesn't look good for a router.........I am still waiting for something possible.
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#35324
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
All is not necessarily what it seems for TDP and I don't fully understand how it works as I don't see how a range of processors with different speeds share the same TDP, but........

On my A 5050e based system the processor has a TDP of 45W, but I use the linux implementation of cool'n'quiet (cpuspeed) to limit what the processor is allowed to do. The maximum clock speed is 2.6GHz with available speeds of 2.6GHz, 2.4GHz, 2.2GHz, 2.0GHz, 1.8GHz and 1GHz. Cpuspeed will automatically drop to the minimum frequency when the full speed is not needed. I also limit it to 1.8GHz, but if I look at my stats, it rarely goes to 1.8GHz. This means my system (M/b with on-board graphics and LAN + Dual LAN PCI-E card + 2.5" SATA disk, pico-PSU, no CD-ROM) generally draws 30-35W which is way below the processor TDP. It boots at nearly 100W but settles right down as soon as cpuspeed kicks in and rarely ever steps up to 1.8GHz. Similarly in Tom's Hardware they have built an i5 system idling at 25w.

Remember that with cpuspeed running the processor speed, and therefore power, will drop significantly when the router is not under load.

I am still trying to work out if I can configure my system as multiwan to do a WAN-LAN through the firewall test. I am a bit wary as last time I fiddled round with the interfaces my default route disappeared and I struggled to get it going again. I would also need to work out how to get source based routes to work.
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Last Edit: 2011/12/03 12:07 By NickH.
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#35338
Re: 1000mbps Router 2 Years, 4 Months ago  
TDP is heat dissipation when loading at full speed. For router purpose it wont be needed to consider coz u can use coolnquiet or speedstep then u can see your heat n power consumption become so low. Note that processor speed not the most important for routing purpose, but bus speed n memory speed. If u really want powerful but average power then just use A regor x2 250 (2x3GHz), mb A785 (ob vga gbe), dual ch ddr3, then u can have so huge throughput. I used it n I can forward full gigabit output with less than 10% processor load. About power consumption, believe or not, only takes 51w with 1xhdd 1tb 7200rpm n 1x hdd 2tb 5900rpm. But it will take over 84w when transfering huge file using winscp (processor load so dam high).
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