using freebsd for a router

Nathan Vidican nvidican at
Thu Nov 24 15:01:38 GMT 2005

JD Bronson wrote:
> I dont want to start a flame/war here...but was *just* wondering...
> I currently use OpenBSD-3.8 for my router (T-1 with many statics) and 
> then use FreeBSD-6.0 for my servers (web/mail/DNS...)
> I am debating on just standardizing to all FreeBSD.
> It seems the security is quite the same - but I dont know about 
> performance pros/cons.
> It seems that the 'pf' that comes with FreeBSD 6.0 is equal to that 
> within OBSD 3.8.
> So all things considered - is there any advantage to using FreeBSD for a 
> router or just keeping things the way they are....?
> Thanks for any comments or flames (I suppose).
> -JD
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As a freebsd advocate, my first reponse is yes - go for it. T1 speeds not that 
huge to be routing anyhow, so performance really shouldn't be the key issue as 
stability and security... ah, now there's where I like OpenBSD.

FreeBSD afaik will perform just as well in your situation (assuming nothing out 
of the ordinary), but just be sure to disable at startup any and all services 
you don't want/require (ie: sendmail). That's one thing I do like about OpenBSD, 
default install doesn't startup things like that, they're disabled by default 
from the get-go.

Not to start any flames of my own, know one can do a custom install and have the 
same result with FreeBSD - just pointing out the 'simple' default install does 
enable things you'll probably want to disable if just using the machine as a 
router and/or packet filter/firewall.

Nathan Vidican
nvidican at
Windsor Match Plate & Tool Ltd.

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