Home CPE choice - summary

Charles N Wyble charles at knownelement.com
Thu Apr 1 11:51:53 CDT 2010

Thank you everyone for your replies! :)  It's been great having an 
operational type discussion.

Here is my summary of the thread:



m0n0wall (I didn't know this was the base for pfSense until I started 
researching it today)

Juniper. I have taken a Juniper course and have the Oreilly book, but 
I'm a Cisco guy pretty much through and through.
Cisco 871 (I see these pop up on craigslist a fair amount. I suppose 
I'll pick one up and add it to my lab)
Fritz!box (not available in the US) :( << I would love to get my hands 
on one of these.

Various full desktop systems
I got some great hardware sizing advice offline which referenced 

My choice:
pfSense on a Dell Optiplex (dual core, 1 gig of ram).  I think this 
should be more then sufficient for performing WAN duties and routing on 
a stick for my 3548 switch. I currently have an 1841 performing those 
duties and really like it. However I need it for my cisco cert studies. :)

I was originally going to deploy pfSense in a KVM VM, but it appears BSD 
paravirtualization support may not be up to the level that Linux is at. 
If anyone has experience with this, please let me know. I have 
everything else deployed in virtual machines, but after reading a bit it 
seems that pfSense in a VM would consume a lot of CPU resources even 
doing moderate amounts of traffic (10 mbps).  I don't want to starve out 
my other virtual machines.

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