Okay hardware for firewall, VPN, Snort , AV and squid?

  • So I've been thinking about buying a mini-ITX server motherboard to use a pfSense box, and wish to use firewall, VPN, Snort , AV and Squid at the same time without any issues. I have been looking at this,  http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813157417&cm_re=intel_atom--13-157-417--Product , as power efficiency is needed while being passively cooled. For other specs I'll be using 4 Gigs of ram and 320gb WD scorpio blue drive that I have laying around. Should I look in to buying better hardware or will this be adequate? Network speed will only max out at 20 mbps , mostly being @15 or so. Also any suggestions on wireless cards for this box? Any help is appreciated.


  • Assuming its fully compatible, it will work great for your needs.
    Put in in aluminum case if possible.  Something that breaths well.

  • About the drive - It will work and even be reliable probably, but I might consider a small 32GB or 64GB SSD instead.

    Reliability matters more than size in pfsense.

  • I read that the NIC's are supported as of 2.0a, so I should be good there. As for the drive, I may put an SSD in, as the drive being use was an older drive that I took out of my notebook when I upgraded to an SSD, so I'm not expecting any failures son as the drive only has about 200 hours on the clock (Taken from S.M.A.R.T). Also, thanks for the idea of using an aluminum chassis, as I was going to use a not so airflow friendly case.


  • I don't mind an old WD drive.  I have several running in old machines that have been powered on for more than 6 years and some more than 8 and zero errors still.

    But SSD, if its the right SSD, is cooler running, less power hungry, faster and, in theory at least, more reliable.

    Small ones like what you need are cheap also.  Big drives are wasted in pfsense.

    My personal use pfsense has a 64GB drive and its never used more than 17% on a full install I think.

    I used to run squid on it, which worked fine but when my kids turned older than 13 I didn't need it.

    Now I run just plain pfsense with full install at that house - no point in generating more disk writes than is needed.

  • When I clicked the link you included for that board, they offered a "combo deal" for a board and case and the case was aluminum/steel.

    Still - Be careful with boards that have usb3 and lots of features - I didn't see anyone saying they had successfully installed pfsense on it, so you are making yourself into a guinea pig.

    So don't say no one warned you.

  • http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16813153255&cm_re=jetway--13-153-255--Product

    Jetway AD3RTLANG 3 x Gigabit LAN Port Daughter Board (incase you were wonder about the intel nics)

    Cheaper - no usb3 - long term 5 year support guaranteed.

    I have a jetway mobo like this in use and its been great - Not exact same one though.

    The daughter board they mention can give you 3 additional intel NICs without using your pci port even.

    I'd buy this, only use the intel nics unless you suddenly needed 5 nics for something.

    The realtek nics onboard used to give pfsense issues, but mine seem to work fine on the newer releases of pfsense.

  • Just to make you feel safer - The old complaints came from 2013…

    Since 2014 new releases:


    4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Service and Amazing Product, February 19, 2014
    By Brad Downs - See all my reviews
    Verified Purchase(What's this?)
    This review is from: Intel Barebone System Embedded Kit/ Jetway NF9D-2550 Dual LAN Intel Atom D2550 1.86GHz Mini-ITX Motherboard, W/Jetway AD3RTLANG: 3 x Gigabit LAN Port Daughterboard, 2GB DDR3 SODIMM Memory, M350 Enclosure, PicoPSU-80 80W DC-DC power supply (Personal Computers)
    I normally don't write reviews, but I am so impressed that I had to.

    AMAZINGLY FAST SHIPPING!! It said it would take 2-3 business days to ship, then 3-5 more days to be delivered. It shipped the same day and arrived ONLY 2 business days later!! AWESOME!

    Product is exactly as advertised. Worked beautifully! I needed to use an external USB CD drive to load the OS and was concerned about the BIOS detection and boot. Booted up the box, BIOS detected the USB CD drive by default and booted from it.

    The CPU fan that it comes with is as quiet as a mouse. It does come with the external AC to DC adapter. The processor is the Atom D2550 as the title specifies, not the D550 the description says.

    I am using this as a pfSense router (2.1) and it detected all the NICs without issue and is running beautifully!

    (Still - I'd buy the board from newegg, buy the riser and build the system myself)  Or try asrock if it makes you happy.  Just offering options.