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matt_30
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 12:48 pm    Post subject: A simple home router Reply with quote

After months of frustration with my current router crashing and not having the functionality i require i am looking to build my own and install a copy of Gentoo on it.

After deciding the spec like the services i would install and the hardware i come to the problem of the base unit.

I am looking for a small low powered quiet base unit with 2 network ports on it. It doesn't need a cd/dvd drive or even good graphics but i am unable to find anything like this on the market.

Does anyone have any suggestions to what i could use?
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lxg
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The OpenWRT project is all about open source routers and networking hardware. I'm sure you will also find good ideas for hardware there. For example the Linksys routers are known to be great for the type of box you have in mind.

Apart from that, I've read about people composing their own router on an ITX platform. You'll find hardware parts for these usually at electronics stores.
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minor_prophets
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's a bunch of threads here covering routers from boxes with multiple nics to embedded Gentoo installations. Take a look around. I settled on a Jetway C7 and am currently building a hardened install. Its an ITX factor and the cpu is purported to only consume 7W of power. I bought a daughterboard that has 3 GBit Lan interfaces. So 4 nic interfaces total.

This project is forcing an education(a healthy hurting) on me. Oh well, an excersize in patience that will not be without its rewards.

What do you intend to run on the router? What purpose do you have for the router? Firewall, http proxy, IDS, ...? Once you answer that question, you might better determine what hardware you'll need to run the software on.
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matt_30
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 21, 2009 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

so far i plan to use it to just put the basic networking on there with a firewall, dns server, throw in a wireless card, and maybe bittorrent.

I dont plan to have X on it but will be installing things like openssh. A sip server maybe a project in the future.
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minor_prophets
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2009 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

In that case, if you have an old computer in operating condition. Why not try this with Gentoo? There is a Gentoo home router post around here somewhere. You'll just need a few extra nic cards and you're off.
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matt_30
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2009 2:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does anyone know if they do pci cards with 4 nic's on them?
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minor_prophets
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep, take a look around. Verify if they're properly supported on the linux driver side. Their are a few.
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2009 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd second the idea of getting one of the older Linksys WRT routers. I've two set up in my house.

Check out Ultimate WRT54G hacks (unfortunately currently off-line). The book is a little dated on the software side as OpenWRT has progressed a lot since the book was published (e.g. WebGUI now available) but very handy for the hardware hacks and getting started.
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Dammital
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PostPosted: Fri Jan 23, 2009 9:32 pm    Post subject: Re: A simple home router Reply with quote

matt_30 wrote:
I am looking for a small low powered quiet base unit with 2 network ports on it. It doesn't need a cd/dvd drive or even good graphics

I'm fond of my Soekris Net5501, which I see is available in Europe. No display adapter, no HD (you can install one, but I live perfectly well with a CF).
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minor_prophets
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2009 2:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Soekris is nice and available here in the US, but it is expensive. ~$350 US without the CF. However, there are many howto's out there and distros which are appropriate if you want something along the lines of the Soekris. Who knows, you may even learn OpenBSD in the process while using their pf firewall(one of the best their is)
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