Which Operating System should I have on my router?
This article was last updated on 2022-12-30
Is pfSense better than OPNSense?
This is one of the most frequently asked questions we get. Should I have pfSense or OPNSense, IPFire, or OpenWRT or maybe something completely different?
It depends on what you want to do! Here, at TekLager, we run OpenWRT on our Access Points and OPNSense on our routers.
Here are a few basic recommendations we make, depending on what you want to use your hardware for.
I want something powerful and simple.
You should get OPNSense or pfSense. Both of these operating systems are mature, full-featured, and have a lot of documentation online.
OPNsense has a nicer user interface and seems to implement new features faster than pfSense.
pfSense has been around for longer, so the community is bigger, and there's more documentation online.
IPFire has a less mature user interface, so we only recommend it if you already know it. OpenWRT is excellent in many ways but less user-friendly for firewall configuration than OPNSense and pfSense.
I want to have wireless in my router.
That's easy! You should use OpenWRT.
OpenWRT has the best Wireless support and achieves the highest wireless throughput. No other operating system comes close.
You should NOT use pfSense or OPNSense - they don't support 802.11ac and have sub-optimal 802.11n support.
See more information about OpenWRT performance here.
I have an APU router and want to have a full gigabit internet speed.
OpenWRT and IPFire achieve full gigabit routing on APU routers out of the box. Both have great VLAN and PPPoE support as well.
It's possible to get a full gigabit throughput on pfSense and OPNsense as well, but a few configuration tweaks are required. In these systems, VLAN configuration and PPPoE throughout will be limited. See our Knowledge Base for more information.
I want to use my router as a VPN client.
pfSense, OPNSense, and OpenWRT are working great with OpenVPN.
On APU routers pfSense and OPNsense achieve about 100Mbit/s throughput. OpenWRT achieves about 140Mbit/s.
APU delivers more than 600Mbit/s with Wireguard VPN. If you have a choice between OpenVPN and Wigeguard, choose the latter.
More detailed information can be found in APU OpenVPN and Wireguard performance benchmark.
TLSense routers achieve between 500Mbps - 1Gbps+ throughput with OpenVPN depending on the model.
Is OPNsense better than pfSense?
Both are good, but here at TekLager, we are recommending OPNsense.
If you are interested in a detailed comparison, please read pfSense vs OPNsense.
How about other operating systems?
Take a look at the comparison of 16 different operating systems.