Intel I225 v3 issues

Has anyone tried openwrt on the i225 v3 stepping? There are plenty of issues with i225 and intel seems to have abandoned i225 altogether and launched i226 (my guess is that its just an i225 v3 rebrand to avoid any confusions).

The thing is i226 firewalls on aliexpress have showed up but the old ones with i225 v3 are at a good discount. I plan on getting one as soon as possible but I just want to know whether anyone had issues with it and whether its worth it or would that be waste? at 170$ for a 4x intel 2.5G box I feel like it would be a great openwrt device that would last a long time.

I dont need 2.5G and i210 is fine too (though cant find i210 at all for some reason) but if its a steal why not. Need some input before making the purchase.

1 Like

what was wrong with your previous topic ?

1 Like

I thought it couldnt be viewed as on the mobile phone I couldnt see views and I thought it wasnt approved by mods or something. Sorry my bad. I guess there is just no one who actually has one of these running openwrt. So maybe I need to bite the bullet and be the first one.

Well, I’m considering a device which has this quad NIC too, but when I search the forum for i225, I see several results coming up. You could bite the bullet and buy one off course, but you could also wait a few hours or perhaps days. Not all users of OpenWRT are equally active on the forum. You could also send a few DM’s to people who seem to have experience with Intel i225? It’s just a thought but perhaps worth saving you some money and headache?

1 Like

I have tried searching for i225 v3 + openwrt but most people seem to have issues on windows 10 for boards with built in nics. hard to find someone with a similar setup. but yes willing to wait. protectili actually has official devices though with i225 v3 so seems promising.

1 Like

I don't think these cards are very common, esp on the 2nd hand market, or people go for the Realtek RTL8125 or RTL8245 cards instead.

Also wouldn't expect the 2.5GbE cards to be recyled, the companies have been using 10GbE for ages, there are no 2.5 cards in the scrapped servers.

Used non-multigbit 10GbE cards are cheaper anyway, if your home network can support the speed.


10GbE are much more (>3x) expensive, are power hungry, especially if you don't need 10Gb bandwidth, require better cables and go shorter distance. Also, a lot more routers come with 2.5G Ethernet then 10GbE.

TLDR, 2.5G makes sense for home use.

1 Like

See thread, people running a number of different OS (including OpenWrt), on both flavours of the Intel; CWWK seems to be the brand of choice.


Excellent. I knew patrick from sth had done a review but he used pfsense on it. I was looking for openwrt. This thread I must have somehow missed. So it seems the heatsink isnt enough. I dont think it would matter much to me. I would just put a fan on it. I care about it being compact and having openwrt + 4G backup sim with load balancing. Ill do some more digging before I order one but I feel like at 170$ the 5105 version might be worth it. I already have ram and a 4G module plus a spare old ssd for the OS.

1 Like

Not the point I was trying to make, but I agree.

You can use 10GbE on CAT5e up to 45m, if i remember correctly.

Hi @ct25
I made the same choice, I replaced a J3160 + 2xGbit nics by a N5105 + 4xi225 B3 because I needed more NICS (and on the J3160 the USB ports are on the front panel, no pratical for me in my case to add an USB NIC if it is plugged on the front)

... it was a kind of mistake, not because off the NICs, but because of the heat
The N5105 makes much more heat than the J3160. I regret not having chosen a J4125.
right now my cpu is at 56°C, the aluminium case is warm more than I like

I have these one :

About the I225, no problem with them but you can't achieve 2.5Gbps port to port ("switching", the 2 NICs on br-lan). I have these speeds:

iperf3.exe -c srv -P8 -t20
[SUM]   0.00-20.00  sec  4.28 GBytes  1.84 Gbits/sec                  sender
[SUM]   0.00-20.00  sec  4.28 GBytes  1.84 Gbits/sec                  receiver

iperf3.exe -c srv -P8 -t20 -R
[SUM] 0.00-20.00 sec 4.23 GBytes 1.81 Gbits/sec 0 sender
[SUM] 0.00-20.00 sec 4.22 GBytes 1.81 Gbits/sec receiver

the 2 hosts on the same switch I have 2.30Gb/s (hosts have Realtek NICs)
1 Like

Interesting. Thanks. The thread shared above for servethehome forums has a lot of interesting content. This is likely the version with a sort of small heatsink. People were able to lower the power limits on the cpu through bios. replace the thermal paste and sand down the heatsink a little. Also a fan on top of it was used by some. Overall this should bring down the temperatures and possibly achieve higher single core turbo speeds. Its possible throttling is causing lower speeds on the NICs as I don't see any reason why 2.5gbps switching cant be achieved on it (sth reviews say even the j4125 can).

The thing is I probably wont even have gigabit internet for the next 2-3 years even if I have fiber capable of it currently. So I dont even have use for 2.5gbps but these things are very cheap currently and I do need a 4G backup and with load balancing and mwan3, this can be done very easily in openwrt. So for the price its attractive for me.

One of the most interesting things I found was protectili using the same boards but with custom coreboot firmware. Someone was able to flash that coreboot binary (risky) on what they ordered from aliexpress (long shot boards will match this closely).

I am having trouble ordering anything to India right now (not sure why) so if I do get something delivered ill update. But currently looking at the best options. The thread however is very negative about i225 b3 or i226 . They probably are all running opnsense / pfsense so openwrt might work better.

1 Like

Interesting, I'm considering J4125 @ 2.0GHz with i225-V, and hoping that is enough to support SQM / Cake shaping at 2Gbps. Thoughs on that?

Plain routing, yes - but I wouldn't be as convinced about it keeping up with sqm/ cake at those speeds for an Atom CPU.

1 Like

Thanks, that's what I figured; no wonder the pricing on boxes with that combo is cheap.

Any idea what single-threaded CPU specmark is required to shape at 2Gbps?

1 Like

My guess would be 'any' semi-recent (ivy-bridge and newer) Intel core i3+ or AMD ryzen, I'd just avoid the Atom line-up.

Disclaimer: my reference for this assessment are the ivy-bridge based c1037u and the baytrail-d Atom-based j1900, albeit both equipped with 1000BASE-T network cards.

1 Like

Thanks again, would a Celeron J4125 from 2019 (Gemini Lake Refresh) do it?

Single-threaded performance (1170) is less than an i5-4200U (1299), and while it has 4 cores, there is no hyperthreading. For a router, guessing that more cores are better than HT on 2 cores.

1 Like

Gemini Lake is Atom based, I would not expect (at all) for it to do 2 GBit/s via sqm/ cake.

1 Like

Well, somebody's got to try it... :wink:

1 Like

Or, we could have data on the N5105, vevere, you still there? Did you ever get the full 2.5Gb going on that box? Even if not, you could test and see how heavy the SQM load would be on 1.84Gb?

Might be nice to start a real world device capability database. I think an actual out thru the eth ports capability test data base, with and without SQM would be a more worthy thing to have, vs the iperf thru your loopback one...

I may be in the market, my little x86 box of some years now may be starting to have issues...

1 Like