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[ale] Choke point (or when to bring on router)

Bob Kruger wrote:
> Folks;
> Got a couple of questions for those who run large throughput capacity 
> systems as a router and a firewall.
> At what volume of traffic would you consider replacing a Linux box that 
> serves as a router and firewall and replacing it with dedicated hardware 
> like a Cisco?  Does anyone have any tips on tweaking a system to 
> maximize throughput?

   I have lots of faith in Linus/AC and the other kernel hackers, so I wouldn't replace a Linux box for anything less than a carrier grade or fault-tolerant box.  A Linux box will offer you more flexability, have a fraction of the cost, and usually has more raw power (so, it can do other things to, like Squid/IPTables).

   The only reason I'd go with a commercial router for a smaller than carrier grade system, is to save myself the time of overall system setup, and to let somebody else (Cisco) manage the software (the IOS).

   Tip: 2.2 kernels there is an option to compile as a router or a host, pick router.  2.4 kernels have faster networking bits.  Dedicte the machine to routing...get everything else off of it you can, and everything out of the kernel you can live without.
   Like Dow said, smart ethernet cards are a plus for taking the load off the CPU, but try to find one with support for such features in linux.

Lost in Tokyo,
     Jack of All Trades, Anarchist

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