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Lan or Wan nic problem?


MrTPTF
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New to PFsense and thought I would test it out on an old Atom 230 I have.  I seem to only be able to
get 8mb up and 6 down.  I getting 30 and 10 via my connection from Comcast
going through just my Netgear router.  I am assuming it is the nic but is
there a good way of telling?  The onboard nic is realtek and I hear they can be a problem. I am thinking about disabling
it and adding a second USB Ethernet adapter. 

 

I have tried to swap the lan and wan and it seems like I get one or two mb better performance from the USB adapter,

its hard testing this thing with out taking down my entire network.  any suggestions on a setup for testing  this issue with out being on my home network?... I have a few  PC and Laptops sitting around that I could setup for testing.


Gear spec.


MSI wind atom 230 1.6 ghz


2GB ddr2


onboard gig eathernet realtek nicRL8111C

Usb 2.0 10/100mps trendnet tu2 et100 Ethernet


This post is using the same device and vary happy with the
results but they are not getting any more than I am from what it looks like.

http://forums.hexus.net/networking-broadband/167729-pfsense-router-little-pointless-story-pictures.html



http://forums.hexus.net/networking-broadband/167729-pfsense-router-little-pointless-story-pictures.html

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I used the following link to force the update http://doc.pfsense.org/index.php/Forcing_Interface_Speed_or_Duplex_Settings then validated each interface speed and duplex in the GUI.  I have both interfaces set for 100baseTX FD.  i tried setting at 1000BaseT but  I am still getting around 8 down and 6 up. Is there another setting?  Am I looking in the wrong place?

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I am still using the netgear router to ensure the family does not freak out on me.  That means I am only able to mess with the PFsence router late at night. I am using the status Traffic tool in PFsense and http://speedtest.comcast.net/ to check the speed.  I get between 27 - 30 down and 6 - 8 up depending on the time of day via the netgear. my setup is an Arris tm602g/ct cable modem to netgear n600 to a gb trendnet switch tegs160g.  I tested this through a netgear ds104 10/100 switch just for kicks and get the same results.

 

is there a better way to test the bandwidth?   

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To be consistent, I would use the same web-based tool, such as speedtest.net.

 

I'm not quite sure I understand your test setup. I get how you're testing the Netgear, but how is the pfSense connected when you test it?

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I am disconnecting my netgear from the modem and connecting the modem to the PFsence wan interface.

Then I am plugging the Lan interface to the switch. I have a laptop I am connected to the switch for testing.  PFSence is going to act as my DHCP server so I only have the laptop connected during testing.  that way I only need to refresh the laptop and not worry about the rest of my devices when I switch back. if I decide to make the move then i will connect all my other devices.  I thought about using an old linksys wrt to help isolate a test environment but my network is so small it seemed easier to just disconnect any devices I do not want affected by my testing from the switch. This also ensures I have nothing else drawing bandwidth on my network.

 

I also cycle the modem and reboot the pfsense router before I start testing.  I have a monitor and keyboard connected to the router for setup and testing as well as use the laptop of course to access the router GUI for additional testing and to run the speed test.

 

If it helps I have swapped the lan and wan interfaces twice to see if there would be a difference between the USB and On-board Lan but no significant difference seemed to be apparent during the speed test. 

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OK. That's good. I think you're going about it the right way.

 

It's really odd that the pfSense box is so slow. You need to isolate whether the issue is the hardware or pfSense.

 

If it was me, I would look to installing 2 different NICs into my pfSense box and test again. If there was no improvement, I would look to installing pfSense on another computer, with different NICs, to see if it makes a difference.

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The board in this box only has a Mini PCI for a Wireless adapter.  I tried to get a nic to work in it but it did not fit correctly for the mounts and I think the on-board controller did not like it and so I gave up trying to get that to work.  

 

So For may next test I am thinking about getting a second usb adapter and disconnecting the onboard lan controller.   Its my understanding that those realtek nics can be a problem.  I know I do not know the software well enough but everything seems to be working as expected which keeps leading me to believe like you that it must be a hardware issue.  I do also have this loaded on an old Dell optiplex p4 box which I will test tonight as well.  I was just hoping this little box would work due to its low profile and power consumption.

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I totally forgot about the USB NIC. That worries me a bit. I would definitely try the P4 box, with 2 PCI/e NICs or 1 PCI/e NIC and 1 onboard.

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