PfSense for ARM not for Pi or relatives



  • In the past couple of years ARM gained a great market share over x86 architecture. We now see ARM in mobile devices, development platforms, TVs, routers and even in servers.

    I believe production cost and the power consumption of ARM processors are the main two reason of this growing market share.

    pfSense on Raspberry Pi does not make sense for me too. However, pfSense on ARM architecture is something that definitely should be.  In the near future this will be more obvious.

    Also, I believe that if an ARM based pfSense would be developed then there would be great marketing opportunity to sell pfSense or its lite versions to SOHO router manufactures such as ASUS, Linksys, Tp-link, etc. They all have 300$ + routers that doesn’t have pfSense features.

    This is why I think that an ARM based pfSense needs to be developed. Do you agree or disagree with me?



  • Hello,
    for me even runing pfSense on Raspberry Pi make sense. When you are looking for an cheap platform to run high available router for eg some technology (LAN -> RPi -> [mobile Internet|SMS|any possible way of communication]). Thinking about give it a try with https://wiki.freebsd.org/FreeBSD/arm/Raspberry Pi base.



  • RaspBerry PI is a NoGo thing for pfSense as a firewall, as a captive portal or Radius server it would making sense.
    (Only in my opinion)

    Before porting the pfSense code to the ARM platform it would in my eyes making more sense to porting it before
    to the TILERA and/or MIPS platform. The Tilera hardware is really powerful and can be soldered from tiny,
    over small and to the really big appliances. And on the MIPS CPUs the UBNT EdgeRouters will be running on,
    also from lower end to really big routers.



  • ddwrt runs on it





  • @oppland:

    what about something like this?

    http://solid-run.com/marvell-armada-family/clearfog/

    That is "Marvell ARMv7" . ARMv7 processors as Raspberry Pi 2. No, not supported under pfSense.

    Here is list of supported CPU:
    https://www.freebsd.org/releases/10.1R/hardware.html#proc



  • @uknownme123:

    @oppland:

    what about something like this?

    http://solid-run.com/marvell-armada-family/clearfog/

    That is "Marvell ARMv7" . ARMv7 processors as Raspberry Pi 2. No, not supported under pfSense.

    Here is list of supported CPU:
    https://www.freebsd.org/releases/10.1R/hardware.html#proc

    I think you meant to supply this link: https://www.freebsd.org/releases/11.0R/hardware.html



  • @HakanTT:

    This is why I think that an ARM based pfSense needs to be developed. Do you agree or disagree with me?

    Why would the pfsense developers waste time & money porting to a zillion different ARM devices? In theory you can have a high performance multi-gbe ARM board for not much money. In practice they're thin on the ground, and you basically need to port to every niche platform. Meanwhile in intel world, up squared is expected to be a sub-$100 N3350 in a pi sort of form factor, complete with dual gbe–and the ability to actually sustain that much traffic. I expect to see sub-$50 embedded intel boards with multiport ethernet within the next year or so. ARM based boards had a chance to make a splash in the space over the past 2-3 years, but the realities of building and selling actual products got in the way of the hype. I think at this point they've missed their opportunity, at least for a while. At this point what they mostly have going for them is that they're dirt cheap. But by the time you add on enough to make them functional they're not that much cheaper than an equivalent intel, but with a much worse experience.



  • @uknownme123:

    @oppland:

    what about something like this?

    http://solid-run.com/marvell-armada-family/clearfog/

    That is "Marvell ARMv7" . ARMv7 processors as Raspberry Pi 2. No, not supported under pfSense.

    Here is list of supported CPU:
    https://www.freebsd.org/releases/10.1R/hardware.html#proc

    Perhaps soon or in the near future



  • Capable hardware has been around a long time.  I bought a Sheevaplug dev kit in 2009 when they were first released.  I'm still using it to this day, running Debian.  I have no doubt that it would make a great router on a stick platform, though I just use it as a NAS with a 2nd gen Drobo.  The only reason I can't run pfSense on it is that it wasn't focused on by developers.  Am I complaining?  Nope.  If and when the FreeBSD devs and the pfSense devs decide to start porting to as many architectures as Debian (just using it as an example), I'll be glad.  Until then, I'll run pfSense on a supported platform or, if I really want a router/firewall on my random ARM device, I'll roll up my sleeves and roll my own.  I choose the former.



  • I think the Netgate SG-1000 is just ok.  Pfsense needs 2 or more processors really.  something like the Netgate SG-1000 with 1gb ram or more and with 4 cores would be really nice, but attention needs to be paid to the throughput that the NICs are capable of.



  • @kejianshi:

    I think the Netgate SG-1000 is just ok.  Pfsense needs 2 or more processors really.  something like the Netgate SG-1000 with 1gb ram or more and with 4 cores would be really nice, but attention needs to be paid to the throughput that the NICs are capable of.

    Yep, this is right and there will be some or later a second device from Netgate.
    Netgate R1

    Other device would also matching well for pfSense as a target and they will also be powerful enough too as I see it right.
    ClearFog SolidRun Base & Pro
    Turris Omnia


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