Connectivity Issues - large downloads stall

  • Hi Folks,

    I'm relatively new to pfSense. Hoping for some help to at least to point me in the right direction for more troubleshooting.

    The problem I have is that my downloads above a certain size will completely stall. The speed isn’t lumpy. It's binary in the sense that when it's working, I'm pinning my connection, but when it stops, it will stop dead. If it’s a browser download, the download will fail until I manually retry. If inside Steam, you can watch the speed drop to zero before resuming after 10-15 seconds at full speed again.

    I don’t see anything too crazy in the logs, but I’m not exactly sure what to look for. My WAN is fiber 150/150 modem into my pfSense box, into my Ubiquiti Switch (there’s a WiFi AP downstream, but everything I’m describing is on Cat6 to desktop NIC’s.)

    I’ve isolated for the client – I’ve got 2 powerful Win 10 desktops on the network, both exhibit the same behavior. I’ve isolated for the LAN – my Ubiquiti switch easily pins the Gb network on sustained transfers from NAS to either desktop. Finally, I’ve isolated for the WAN side by swapping out the pfSense box with the crappy ISP router. The ISP box happily completes large downloads at the full 150Mb WAN speed without interruption. The logical conclusion is that something is going on in the pfSense box or its setup.

    pFsense box is a Zotac CI325 Nano. It’s got 8GB RAM and a decent SSD. The dashboard indicates there’s plenty of horsepower to spare… Past that, not much exotic in my setup. On the latest 2.3.4.p1. Only packages I’m running pfBlockerNG as well as ntopNG… I have an OpenVPN client, but that’s segregated by IP range (none of the clients in question above).

    Is this what people talk about when they trash Realtek NIC’s? Is there anything I should be looking for? Any troubleshooting I can try? If there's logs that would help, I'd be happy to post if someone could narrow down where to post from.


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