[CentOS] Do I need a dedicated firewall?

Thu Dec 12 23:45:51 UTC 2013
SilverTip257 <silvertip257 at gmail.com>

On Thu, Dec 12, 2013 at 11:22 AM, Warren Young <warren at etr-usa.com> wrote:

> I'd keep the separate firewall, but put it on more efficient hardware.
> You should be able to do this in about 5 W.  At 11 cents per kWh, that's
> about $5 per year if it runs continually.  I suspect it could actually
> be done in more like 2 W.


> (For comparison's sake, a Mac Mini idles at about 10 W, and a Raspberry
> Pi *peaks* at 3.5 W.)
> If you had to build the firewall yourself for whatever reason, there are
> small BSD/Linux-ready embeddable PCs you could use for this.  They tend
> to be targeted at industrial applications and have low sales volumes, so
> expect to pay $200+ for them.

PC Engines ALIX [0] - AMD Geode x86 CPUs
Soekris boards [1] - AMD Geode x86 CPUs and now some Intel Atom CPUs

But yeah, they're in the approximate $180 to $200+ price range.  And use
around 5 watts (ALIXes).

There's also other embedded gear.  I don't have power measurements on any
of these, but I'd expect they're 5 to 10 watts max.
Mikrotik Routerboards [2] - mipsbe architecture ; ex RB750GL [4]
Ubiquiti EdgeRouters [3] - mips64 architecture

[0] http://pcengines.ch/alix.htm
[1] https://soekris.com/
[2] http://routerboard.com/
[3] http://www.ubnt.com/edgemax#EdgeMAXhardware
[4] http://routerboard.com/RB750GL

> If you're willing to go bare-bones, a Raspberry Pi, Arduino Galileo, or
> BeagleBone Black plus a USB-to-Ethernet adapter would do the job for
> under $100.

Raspberry Pi's don't have but one NIC _if_ you get that model.  Not to
mention that they don't have a built-in switch like the consumer gear, so
you'd want a switch as well.

Ehhhh ... what's the performance like on those USB Ethernet dongles?
It certainly depends what chipset, revison, etc but some of units are not
so great.  Maybe it's just me, but it's a bit ghetto as well.

> If you can give up a bit of control, you can buy DD-WRT based routers
> off the shelf from the likes of Buffalo and Asus these days.  The
> Buffalo unit I looked at claims to need 13 W peak, but at idle with the
> wireless turned off so it's a wired-only router, I'd be surprised if it
> didn't drop below 5 W.
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//  SilverTip257  //