X86 Router build example for just 100 USD

You don't need those speeds i guess, but about reliable - that sandisk in russia have 8 year warranty, kingdian have 1 year warranty from ali :slight_smile: But i guess you can make a storage from your SSD, that will be much better than HDD i have...is it possible to split SSD to boot and storage parts sir?

privet, i've tested Ubuntu Server 20.04, and i wanted to install ubuntu server, but latency was WAY higher than on openwrt, ping openwrt stable 19-21ms, ubuntu server - 30+ ms can you tell why?

I like this build. For comparison, I'm using a https://www.ebay.com/itm/Dual-Intel-82574L-GbE-and-2G-RAM-Atom-D2550-Mini-ITX-Motherboard-in-Fanless-Case/124475536931 for my home router, but I have opnSense on it ATM (using OpenWRT for the EnGenius PoE AP I have). Cost me ~60 USD & only had to add a small SSD I had lying around, but would probably have worked with a USB stick too. I'm pretty sure there are a lot of other systems like this out there, that were probably used for sales terminals & signage.

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Looks nice, is it full passive cooled? Is it hot?

Passive & quiet. Doesn't seem hot either. It's handling a 100-200mbit connection just fine.

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An almost 10y old CPU isn't all the interesting...?

Mmmh, as long a it handles the load, the age of a CPU seems less important? Okay, newer CPU are more likely to be more power efficient, I grant you that :wink:


Also if you have no server motherboard you may use more "ordinary" MB with single LAN port, which you can configure as trunk (join VLANs), then connect it with trunk port on router (acting as manageable switch and wifi simultaneously). But the downside is shared bandwidth of you have WAN speed over 500Mbps.

Vulns, reliability, crypto acceleration....

Okay, meltdown and co were quite a "treat", but the whole spectre class of issues as affected more than just x86, no?

At least for me x86 has an excellent track record in that respect, you hace different experience? Or are you talking about repurposing old hardware in general?

Overhyped, IMHO :wink: . The only use-case for me would be for VPN, but there I would go for wireguard nowadays, which as far as I can tell uses chacha20 which is not hardware accelerated. AES however might be, but that is true for some x86 as well.

Overall, I think for most users, a more modern SBC is a safer choice than repurposing old hardware, even though pricewise not necessarily a win.

I use a i3 chromebox. CPUs don't even register load. Probably can do everything with a celeron variant. Else there is the i5 and i7 variants. Get them for like $50 on ebay sometimes. Unless I ever find something it cannot handle, I don't know if I would do a dedicated build like this. I used to have a mITX build when running VyOS, but the chromebox works great with OpenWRT. I already have a VLAN switch so it works with the single NIC. I actually have 10 VLANs trunked.

Have 4 VPN always on site-to-site, 3 WireGuard and 1 OpenVPN running on this also. I believe the i3 and above AES-NI helps here quite a bit vs. the celeron.

What? Just 100 USD ? It's too expensive in Russia just for a router. Plus electricity bills.

If it's capable of handling the traffic depends on the speed of your internet as well, doesn't it?

There's a whole world outside of Russia.

This setup is the router.

All is relative.

No, for Russia 100 USD is not expensive, for example ISP DOMRU router Archer C9 costs 110 USD.
Info about electricity bills also in this post.

NanoPi R2S/R4S and some switch (maybe even Cisco from Avito? lol) would be faster and cheaper. Did you actually tested XL adblocking list on modern Rockchips or Amlogic SoC?

Which chromebox model do you have and do you have an idea of what its power consumption is like?

I know it's not a real measure, but Pi 4 can't handle youtube 4k 30fps, g3460 can 0.1% frame loss. I've tested. Also youtube " Jeff Geerling" showed, what Pi 4 can handle only 3.8 Gbit traffic, g3460 can even two 8 Gbit fiber NIC, i have no hardware to test more. But "my guess" g3460 can handle even 20-30 Gbit routing.

routing, or just moving the data ?