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DIY router

mertesnmertesn I am Bobby MillerYukon, OK Icrontian
edited Jul 2016 in Hardware

I've been using a Linksys WRT1900AC as my router for some time now but recently it's decided to be a jerk and not allow my full connection speed - I'm seeing 88Mbps on a 300Mbps connection (yes, even on a wired system). So I decided to follow ArsTechnica's guide to building a router.

Instead of their hardware I used a Zotac ZBOX, 8GB RAM, and a 120GB SSD. Total cost for the build was under $220.

The software setup took about an hour, plus a bit of troubleshooting. The result is I now have a router that reliably hits well over 300Mbps.

I'm still using the WRT1900AC as a wireless access point (set it to bridge mode). Wireless clients are seeing north of 200Mbps.

I've set up SSH for remote access, and plan to add VPN and a few other services.

Troubleshooting:
1. When following the initial setup for the iptables file during NAT configuration, it appears I lost DNS (at least that's what it looks like) as soon as I ran the iptables script. Attempting to use apt-get to install the DHCP server failed because the remote server's hostname couldn't be resolved. Commenting everything out except for the NAT and filter headers and commits and then rerunning the script solved that.
2. DHCP wasn't working for me initially. I suspected that somehow the service didn't know which interface to use. Confirmed it when I ran across instructions here. Editing /etc/defaults/isc-dhcp-server and making sure the LAN-side interface was listed in the INTERFACES line, then restarting the service worked like a charm.

primesuspectGargoyleKwitko

Comments

  • mertesnmertesn I am Bobby Miller Yukon, OK Icrontian
    edited Jul 2016

    WRT1900AC's LAN ports seem to be the culprit for unacceptable speed. If I'm directly connected to the ZBox I get full speed. With the AP in the way it's sub-100Mbs.

    QoS was the culprit. Thanks @Thrax

  • primesuspectprimesuspect Beepin n' Boopin Detroit, MI Icrontian

    Nice! I built our smoothwall when a consumer box device couldn't hang with Expo's LAN needs and have never looked back. We'll be upgrading the Smoothwall before Expo 2017 with some new NICs because HOPEFULLY we'll have gigabit internet by then ... :D :D :D

    mertesnGargoyle
  • ThraxThrax Professional Shill, Watch Slut, Mumble Hivemind Drone Austin, TX Icrontian

    Did you have any sort of QoS or traffic monitoring/logging enabled on your Linksys router? These can totally tank WAN to LAN performance because they must necessarily disable cut-through forwarding and hardware-accelerated NAT, which are required for peak performance on a fast connection.

    mertesn
  • mertesnmertesn I am Bobby Miller Yukon, OK Icrontian

    @Thrax said:
    Did you have any sort of QoS or traffic monitoring/logging enabled on your Linksys router? These can totally tank WAN to LAN performance because they must necessarily disable cut-through forwarding and hardware-accelerated NAT, which are required for peak performance on a fast connection.

    Looks like that was the issue. Thanks!

  • mertesnmertesn I am Bobby Miller Yukon, OK Icrontian

    Problem crept back up, only worse. Did some more troubleshooting and managed to completely kill the LAN connection (the router could get out to the internet, but nothing internal could). Long story short, it was the LAN cable running from the ZBox into the WiFi AP that was causing problems. Replaced it and everything is now fine.

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