RAM needed for DHCP + router?

Daniel Staal DStaal at usa.net
Fri May 27 12:03:32 UTC 2011

--As of May 26, 2011 7:46:10 PM -0400, Chris Hill is alleged to have said:

> I'm looking to build a NAT / DHCP box for a lab network for my company.
> My question is, how do I estimate the amount of RAM the machine will need?
> This box will be running isc-dhcpd, doing NAT either via natd or pf, and
> not much else. I expect the amount of traffic (throughput) to be very
> small, but the address space involved is quite large, at least by my
> standards. It seems to me that this will require potentially large
> amounts of memory for routing tables, etc., but not much disk.
> I'll be installing the latest -RELEASE; 32-bit if I can, 64-bit if I
> must, depending on how much memory it looks like I'll need. I may also
> install webmin for the benefit of my computer-literate-but-not-unix-savvy
> coworkers.

--As for the rest, it is mine.

Just to give a low-end on this:

My home firewall is a custom-kernel NAT/DHCP box, using pf.  It's running 
on a Soekris box, using a RAM disk for logs.  Total RAM in the box is 64MB. 
Avalible RAM (minus the RAM disk) is under 30MB.  I usually run with over 
10MB of RAM free.  It also runs an FTP proxy (outbound, to allow stuff 
through the firewall) and a miniunpdp deamon.

Even with the full kernel, and a few thousand users, I'd be absolutely 
amazed if a GB of RAM isn't well more than enough.  Even half a GB should 
be more than enough.  I'd expect a higher-end Soekris box would be plenty, 
in fact...

Daniel T. Staal

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