Asrock QC5000M as main router and VPN gateway

  • Hello Everyone,

    I need your advice. I'd like to use pfsense as modem/router and I'm looking for hardware which can cover it.
    I thought about:

    I consider also standalone mobo and some AMD CPU.

    My ISP provides with FTTH Internet 300Mb/30Mb (600Mb/60Mb soon). I'd like to use pfsense to establish pppoe connection with my ISP and for NAT/MASQUARADE for my local  netoworks. Additionally there will be IPSEC VPN site-to-site or road warrior mode just for me and my family.

    Let me know if above hardware is enough ? My current mobo with Intel Atom + 2GB RAM and Realtek NICs just sucks. I'm getting only only 250Mb/30Mb (when on my original modem provided by ISP it's 300/30).


  • Basically anything you buy today will run rings around a pre-silvermont atom. That said, in that price range for this application I'd personally go for a J3355 solution over the AMD parts.

  • Thanks for suggestion. I need to refresh my motherboard anyway, my current one (with Intel Atom) has only 1 classic PCI slot, so it's not enough to extend by additional NICs (I mean all Intel PRO 1000 dual or quad cards require PCIE or PCI-X at least).

    My current motherboard is now under FreeBSD control and I'm using mpd5 to establish pppoe connection with my ISP. I was really surprised that download is limited to 250Mb (it should be @316Mb), especially that I never observed huge CPU load. Maybe it's caused by Realtek NIC built into mobo, so I need to buy something newer.

    May I know why you're go for J3355 over the AMD ? I considered J3355 or J3455 but read very bad opinion about mix like this mobo + FreeBSD. There are many more such topics on the web. I suppose that on pfSense I can experience same issues, however not sure if the problem is still valid. It's been a while since it was raised.

    That's why I started looking for AMD stuff. The additional benefit is AES-IN support by A4-Series A4-5050 or A10-4655M. If you or someone here has some positive experience with J3355/J3455 + pfSense, please share me your opinion.

    btw. if not J3355/QC500 so what ? My goal is to build the router/firewall which can handle 600@700Mb down and 60@70Mb up from my ISP. Still awaiting more suggestions guys.


  • If you search this forum you'll find positive reports for the J3355. It runs cooler/lower power draw than the AMD solution, and doesn't require a CPU fan. I would get the J3355 over the J3455 for better single-core performance. Finding AES-NI isn't really an issue, it's in pretty much anything these days. (The J1900/Bay Trail chips were about the last that didn't.)

    All that aside, I missed the PPPoE note in the original post. Given that, I'd target something that could take a socketed processor in the range of the G3950 or G4600 rather than any of the low-power boards. (Which will end up costing significantly more, unfortunately.) PPPoE adds pretty substantial overhead. The other option is finding an ISP that doesn't require the (frankly stupid) PPPoE configuration, but most people don't have much choice if that's what they're stuck with. On the positive side, it is possible to find these motherboards with dual onboard NICs (which are really hard to find for the cheaper embedded CPUs.)

  • ok, You convinced me to choose G4600 and some Asus board. It's better to spend money once rather than two times and have two boards (one unnecessary).
    The costs difference is not so huge, hopefully this hardware will meet my requirements. Thanks VAMike for your recommendations. I'll let you know the results in terms of performance and throughput once I build it.


  • Hi there is the possibility of buying a Dell optiplex 3020 for € 100 on Ebay.
    These PCs have Bios updates for Meltdown and Specter, with an SSD disk and an Intel 4-port network card consuming about 15w.
    These PCs have i3-4130,4150,4160 CPUs, and 4th generation four-core CPU i5.
    It could be an interesting option…

  • Hey Claudio69, nice one. Thanks for that, I’ll check on ebay.


Log in to reply