Building a FreeBSD switch with commodity hardware
julien at perdition.city
Fri Jan 25 09:32:36 UTC 2019
On Thu, Jan 24, 2019 at 08:39:51PM +0000, Simon Connah wrote:
> Hi everyone,
> First of all I am not a networking wizard so would appreciate a little
> help to see if my plan is achievable.
> I need a 1U switch to put in a datacentre and due to my familiarity with
> FreeBSD I thought building a switch based on FreeBSD would be the
> perfect solution but I'm not sure what the hardware requirements would
> be. I have 10 to 20 1gbps Ethernet devices to connect to the switch and
> a single 1gbps uplink to the rest of the internet.
> I'd like to be able to configure VLANs, allocate IPv4 and IPv6 addresses
> to individual machines and use FreeBSD as a firewall for the whole
> process. I also want to be able to expand my system at a later date if I
> need to be able to handle more devices on the local network so I'd need
> to be able to hook the two networks together somehow.
> What I'm not sure about is what hardware specs I'll need for this. What
> kind of CPU and RAM will I require and which Ethernet cards should I
> get? This is not a project that requires 100% up time but realiability
> is important during certain hours of the day.
> I'd appreciate some advice. If you need any more information then let me
> know and I'll try and provide it.
You can also buy two "simple" L2 switches (we use two
https://www.fs.com/fr/products/72944.html stacked) and buy two "small"
devices where you install FreeBSD with PF, CARP, Unbound, etc (we use two
https://www.netgate.com/products/rcc-ve-4860-1u.html) to do the
routing/firewalling/dns cache/DHCP server/...). That's what we do here
and it works like a charm for years.
You'll have better performance with an L3 switch of course..
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