Home Router Recommendations?

Mike Lovell toelovell at gmail.com
Tue Apr 15 11:12:13 MDT 2008

Grant Robinson wrote:
> My suggestion doesn't fit in the < $100 price range, but my favorite 
> general-purpose router that I have ever used is a Soekris[1] box.  
> They are about the size of a your typical home router (such as a 
> linksys wrt54g).  Setup is pretty simple:
> 1) Download image of m0n0wall or shorewall or other firewall/router 
> distro
> 2) use dd to copy it to CF card
> 3) insert CF card into Soekris box, and power on
> You can find better directions than that on the web, but you get the 
> idea.
> They cost more than your average home router, but they also are MUCH 
> more stable.  Just to give you an example, I have one hooked up to a 
> fiber connection that serves a block of public IP's, and acts as a 
> firewall and router for those IPs.  It sustains a pretty consistent 
> load of 3-5 Mbps, with spikes up to 20 or 30 Mbps and has not needed 
> to be rebooted in a LONG time.  In fact, I don't remember EVER having 
> to reboot it, which means if it has happened, it hasn't happened very 
> often.  I run m0n0wall, but you can run a variety of operating systems 
> on it.  m0n0wall is FreeBSD-based, has a web configuration, and can do 
> just about anything you would want and/or need.
> If you aren't down with the price, a good second choice is to use a 
> Linksys WRT-54* (WRT-54GS, etc) model that allows you to use OpenWRT, 
> and use that as your router.  I've had much better stability with 
> OpenWRT on consumer-grade routers than with the built-in software.
> Grant
> [1] <http://www.soekris.com/>
While the soekris option is awesome, it is a little pricey. There is 
another board that is about half the price but it is still over $100. It 
is the PC Engines ALIX board. (http://pcengines.ch/alix2.htm). I bought 
one for myself from mini-box.com and it cost me ~130 for the board, like 
20 for power supply and case, and 10 for a cf card. I am putting linux 
on it but pfSense is a great option. So it is about 160 total. A soekris 
option will probably be over 200 for just the board.

If the price is too high still, Linksys WRT54GL is still an awesome 
router. Especially when coupled with OpenWRT and X-wrt. Decent web 
interface and the ability to do basically what ever you want to it. They 
are usually about 60 on newegg.

There is my $.02.


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