Gigabit capable Router setup?

Don’t forget your second NIC!

I picked up some quad port intel gigabit nics in the past. Just need to get moar rams! I even have a spare ssd to minimize the reboot time.

Just need to find a low profile bracket.

You don’t need more RAM for pfSense. It will hardly use 200MB.

Good to know, but I’m probably not going to use pfsense for this router. I’m always a fan of sticking more than I need when it’s inexpensive, that way I can experiment with things if i want to.

Just wanted to confirm for you - I installed my HP 290 today as pfSense with a 16GB Intel Optane SSD and no other modifications. It can absolutely handle Gigabit, it flies.


I’m running OPNSense with the 16GB optane SSD. Hella fast.

I have noticed slightly slower speed tests than prior. My RB800 was doing 900mbit, and I’m getting about 700mbit. I also got about 700mbit with an iperf test. I can’t run an iperf test on the mikrotik hardware tho.
I am getting flexibility in tinkering, and openvpn, wireguard, etc. Seems to work great so far. I left the 500gb drive in there, but I may take it out.

Interesting, I get 980 Mbps down/up on my pfSense with the same hardware.

Possibly due to load on ATT’s lines. Just ran speedtest-cli from opnsense:

root@opnsense:~ # speedtest --share --secure
Retrieving configuration...
Testing from AT&T U-verse (
Retrieving server list...
Selecting best server based on ping...
Hosted by Sprint (Fort Worth, TX) [17.16 km]: 12.797 ms
Testing download speed................................................................................
Download: 868.30 Mbit/s
Testing upload speed......................................................................................................
Upload: 546.95 Mbit/s

I should run the test regularly, and graph it.

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I also did the hacks to remove the ATT gateway from the thing: GitHub - MonkWho/pfatt: Enable true bridge mode for AT&T U-Verse and pfSense (this is a fork of an original repository Since it is not available anymore, I'll do my best to maintain a copy for people that still need a bypass)

The original for some reason, was taken down. I don’t know why. It’s extremely useful, and still authenticates with their hardware. :frowning:

What would you recommend for something similar to the HP 290 but in a rackmount solution?

The QC box thread that substitutes for the HP 290 would work very well. There is also the thread with the cheap 1u rackmount cases to spice up your rack and some of those are very capable xeon machines that would make perfect pfsense boxes. Got to be picky as some come with old hardware though.

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Yes I saw the 1u rackmount thread and they had good options in there. The QC box thread I assume you are referring to is the same one in the post below yours? If so, that is for plex transcoding not pfsense.

My thought is to use the g4900 and get a SM board that can fit in a 1u chassis for now.

yes but the plex transcoding boxes are also plenty for pfsense and most are low power and low heat. My pfsense box and my plex transcode box are very similar hardware.

Got it…thank you for your reply :slight_smile:

I am looking to setup a home router and landed on this thread. I watched your video on the HP 290 and you mention it can handle 10Gig ethernet, which is one thing I’d like to have.

Would the HP 290 still be your recommendation now in 2021 for a low-cost homebrew router?

Do you see this machine having any issues with this SFP+ card this ethernet card?

Thank you!

Typically, a 10Gb capable home network has nothing to do with the router. If you don’t have > 1Gb home internet, there’s no reason for pfSense/OPNsense to have a 10Gb card.

I’m far from a networking expert, so please correct me. As I understand, when device/port isolation is enabled, traffic has to flow through the router, which is why I was looking to install a 10G nic for the LAN side of the network.


That’s correct. However, first plan out your network and put bandwidth-sensitive things on the same L2 segment so the switch can do most of the heavy lifting. If you have security needs such that local 10Gbps routing is unavoidable, consider an L3-capable switch. FreeBSD/PFSense/OPN software routing is limited in speed.

Thank you for the info! I’m reading up on Layer-3 switches.