pfS_WAAAT i5-3470T / Intel VT1000 / 1U Rack Mount Firewall/Router

My temps said they were 27C, but as I said everything was hot to the touch. I’m going to swap out the fans, in looking at these fans and the noctuas I got mine are wayyyy thinner, and barely push any air. Right now I have my router on my workbench, with the cover off and it’s running fine. I’ll keep you all posted once I get the new fans in.

Just to update my temps, I changing the fans seemed to help out. thanks for the help. I do have another question, do you use both mobo nics, or have you disabled them and use the four port nic?

Let me preface by saying you DO NOT need to do what I did. It’s beyond overkill:


  1. Used as IPMI Port to Mobo.
  2. Used as WAN Port (Red Intel AMT Port)

PCIE NIC: VLANs 10/20/30/60/100

  1. LACP Trunkport to Cisco EtherChannel Port 37
  2. LACP Trunkport to Cisco EtherChannel Port 39
  3. LACP Trunkport to Cisco EtherChannel Port 41
  4. LACP Trunkport to Cisco EtherChannel Port 43

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Thanks for the response @COZisBack. Right now I have the following:


  1. Lan
  2. Wan (Red Intel AMT Port


  1. Bridged to RG
    • 4 (Unused)

How did you get your Nic on your Mobo to be used as IPMI? Would I have to move the LAN to the Nic card? or can I use existiing port as LAN and IPMI?

What made you go with this particular motherboard/CPU combo? I’m having trouble finding the board in stock for a reasonable price. Maybe there is a comparable motherboard and/or CPU out there? I understand low power and AES-NI being important.

This is a great build, by the way! Thank you for sharing!

This combo was featured in JDM’s pfsense build guide. If you’re looking for the board, there’s actually one for sale right here on these forums:

Also, here’s a reasonably priced replacement, which you could argue is a better buy:

Thanks! I didn’t know about the guide. I’m new to this site. I will definitely check it out.

I was looking at the Protectli pre-built boxes before but I think DIY is a better way to go.

I was looking into other Thin Mini-ITX options and found this site full of info on what’s out there:

That site is not about pfSense or FreeBSD but it’s useful information about the different boards.

I also found out you can get some M.2 to PCIe adapters which I believe can be used to add a PCIe x4 slot to your board and using an extender should be able to add a NIC. I’ve never tried it but seems doable if you find a good board that only has 1 NIC and no PCIe slot.

Right now, buying a HP 290 is the best deal you’re going to find. Add a quad NIC and you’re good to go. Look into those:

Sorry, I never addressed this. I misspoke. I don’t use it as IPMI, but I use it as my management port for pfsense, so if I misconfigure one of my other ports, I can always get back into pfsense using that port.

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@COZisBack, Thanks for clarifying that for me. That makes a ton of sense, and is how I have mine setup. Hope your holidays went well, and I wish you all the best this New Year!

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Thank you sir. You as well.

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That’s great! I ordered me one of those PC’s and a quad 1000vt card with the short bracket. $167 total. Thanks.


nice, small and efficient

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Hello guys…

Have a couple questions:
I just did this same build using the iStar 1U server case…

  1. My RESET button works fine, but the POWER button does nothing, for those running this case, do you have a functioning Power button on the front panel? (Wondering if I have a faulty switch?)

  2. Using the noctua fans, are you pushing out or pulling air into the case?

UPDATE: Got an RMA on the case, that is working better now.

Question on temps. I am seeing 68C on CPU… as high as 73C on reboots.
I’m using the silverstone and noctua fans. Unsure how you guys are seeing such low temps.

I"m also using HIAdaptive mode.

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I really like this build, and want to replicate this. eBay doesn’t seem to have these motherboards in stock these days, and finding a suitable successor appears to be a challenge. For the chassis, can you mount it so that the I/O is on the front of the case instead of the rear? Looks like in a post from Dec 2019 it shows the ears mounted on the I/O side, but hard to tell with certainty. @COZisBack overall would love to hear how this has held up for you since you built it and if you have any pointers as I attempt to replicate this for my pfSense setup.

I’d just use adaptive.

The rack-mount ears can be moved to the IO side, I have one in front of me. You’ll lose access to the power and reset buttons though, and unless you get the proper power connector, you’ll have a bit of power cord sticking out of the front.

Similar build in this thread if you want more pics: pfSense 1U Rack Build Complete

As far as the mobo goes, you are correct. It looks like the supply has dried up. To be honest though, people liked that board mainly because it had a dual NIC. But for less than $30, you can add a nice quad NIC.

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Yep, I did more research and found that the ears can be moved. I bought the case and did just that - those screws were really difficult to get out though!!

For the motherboard, I found a similar one here, and if you look at the used ones, you can get it for about $60 - ASUS Mini ITX DDR3 1600 LGA 1150 Motherboard Q87T/CSM. It was really the only option that I could find (used or new) where it was mini-ITX form factor, has a PCIe slot, and uses19v power.

I’m building one now, in the process of buying all the parts, looks like the build will wind up costing me around $250.