APU2C0 IPFire throughput test - much faster than pfSense

Posted by Pawel Suwala on 

Few weeks ago we have published a pfSense throughput test for PC Engines APU2C0 board, and got few people scratching their heads. Why is the (still impressive) 620Mbit/s not a full Gigabit? The CPU is not running at 100%, the memory is not limiting the routing.

It turned out that pfSense 2.3.4 is the bottleneck, not the hardware. IPFire (linux) can route a full Gigabit on APU2C0 board without breaking a sweat. 

 

Here's the pfSense vs IPFire comparison:

Name Router OS Transfer 4 connections Bandwith 4 connections Transfer 1 connection Bandwith 1 connection Ping latency min Ping avg max mdev
no router. Switched connection   1.09 GBytes 940 Mbits/sec 1.09 GBytes 938 Mbits/sec 0.254 0.31 0.363 0.035
apu2c0 pfSense 2.3.4 739 MBytes 620 Mbits 732 MBytes 614 Mbits/sec 0.331 0.45 0.653 0.08
apu2c0 IPFire 2.19 1.09 GBytes 940 Mbits/sec 1.09 GBytes 940 Mbits/sec 0.43 0.538 0.628 0.055

 

APU2 achieves a full line throughput under IPFire. If you have a gigabit internet, this should make you smile :-)

Here's a log from iperf3 and a screenshot from ipFire

root@homedesktop:/home/sniku/test# iperf3 -c 192.168.5.10
Connecting to host 192.168.5.10, port 5201
[  4] local 192.168.1.3 port 52694 connected to 192.168.5.10 port 5201
[ ID] Interval           Transfer     Bandwidth       Retr  Cwnd
[  4]   0.00-1.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   1.00-2.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   2.00-3.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   3.00-4.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   4.00-5.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   5.00-6.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   6.00-7.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   7.00-8.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   8.00-9.00   sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
[  4]   9.00-10.00  sec   112 MBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0    229 KBytes       
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
[ ID] Interval           Transfer     Bandwidth       Retr
[  4]   0.00-10.00  sec  1.10 GBytes   941 Mbits/sec    0             sender
[  4]   0.00-10.00  sec  1.10 GBytes   941 Mbits/sec                  receiver

iperf Done.

 

Does it mean that you should install IPFire instead of pfSense? No, not unless you need 1 Gbit throughput.

pfSense has more features, and has nicer user interface. IPFire is FAST, but it's somewhat lacking in UI and isn't as intuitive. If you don't have 1 Gbit internet, you should probably stick to pfSense.