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Super Router - Re-do


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A while back I stopped using half of the "super router" setup. When our internet connection was upgraded from a 25/5 plan to a 60/5 plan, I started running into performance issues with the virtual NIC's in Xenserver. I could have tried ESXi or something else, but the easiest thing to do was just shut down Untangle and deal with it later. As I got busy with other things, time went by, lots of it. Untangle has been shut down for a year or so.


Well our plan has been upgraded again, this time to a 100/5 plan, when are they going to do something about the 5 part of that? I started running into performance issues again, but really was not that upset that were topping off at 70-75Mb/s. So i started thinking again about un-doing the virtual setup and going back to two physical boxes (pfSense in one and Untangle in the other). But then the power went out one day for hours while I was a work and the battery backups will only last so long. When the wife called to ask how to get the internet back up, I just told her to wait until I get home.


When I got home I turned on the Xenserver box and hoped I had set pfSense to auto boot, and didn't set all the other VM's to autoboot. Well, I didn't set any of them to autoboot. On top of that, I had never installed the management software on my new PC. But I have a monitor, mouse, keyboard setup in the server room with a switch to all the equipment and eventually got it running again. But this made me realize I need to speed up the move.


Tonight, Jim Collison had asked me to broadcast his show while he was in a remote location. No problem, I have a pretty sweet setup for broadcasting. As normal, I rebooted the broadcast server, my studio PC and this time decided to reboot the router. Not something I normally do, but I wanted as clean a setup as possible. So I waited for everything to boot and to my surprise, the PC's rebooted before the router. Several minutes later when the router had still not rebooted, I went to check on it. Guess what? The "free" Xenserver license had expired and once a VM is shut down, it will not reboot. HOLY CRAP!! Now what do I do?


Well, I have a few spare parts laying around and I quickly got a motherboard, a NIC card (MB has one already), a power supply and a harddrive (all 80 gigs of it). Plugged in my USB DVD drive and installed pfSense 1.2.2 (my 1.2.3 CD was damaged). After a couple of other issues to overcome, the system was up and running and ready for the podcast. Notice I didn't mention a case. Yep, all the computer guts are just laying out on the table (on a static bag). This will be fixed over the weekend.


So how is this hog-pog of equipment doing with no tweeks and just a simple install of an outdated version of pfSense? Have a look:




BTW, outside of the fact I keyed the MAC address of my modem wrong, getting pfSense up and providing internet to he house, including finding the parts to put together, was about 45 minutes.


BTW, I just ran the speed test again while the network was slow and it 102Mb/s down. Up was still only 5.14Mb/s.

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  • pcdoc


  • jmwills


  • geek-accountant


  • ikon


Because of you, I just got off the phone with Time Warner and upgraded my internet connection. Can't get the 100/5 so I have to settle for 50/5 but at least I don't feel as bad.

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Nice to hear I caused you to spend money this time around pcdoc, because up to now it's been the other way around. The 100 down is really a good bit more than I need. What I wish they would do is raise the 5 to 20 or even 10. I need more upload speed!


jmwills, I do get out. Every day I have to drive into work and then drive home. :)

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You sound like me. I've had 100 down before and honestly it is a waste but the 60 up was wonderful.


As soon as we get moved into the new house, a think a setup like yours is on order, or at least an ISA TMG.

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The 100 down is really a good bit more than I need. What I wish they would do is raise the 5 to 20 or even 10. I need more upload speed!


Hah! The best I can get from my ISP is 1 Up - I only wish I could get 5.

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I just wish they would quit blocking Port 25. I promise I will not spam anyone.


I'm just using the alternate (port 565??) on my email server.

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