Home Networking

When building a home network, there is a progression depending on budget:

Item Budget Notes
Modem Any Purchase your modem, don’t rent from cable company
Router / Wifi Small Get a solid router / wifi combo
Router Medium Get a dedicated router / firewall appliance
Wifi Access Points Medium Separate out wifi access points
Ethernet Cables Medium Run Drops
Run Fiber Big

Cabling

Cat 6 cables are the norm, when purchasing ensure that they are full copper rather than CCA (copper clad aluminum). CCA should only be used in temporary spots because it’s transmission degrades significantly with distance.

Measuring Network speed

iperf3 can be used to test the network speed between two devices. Install on both with: brew install iperf3 or apt-get install iperf3. On one machine, start up the server mode:

iperf3 -s

On the other machine, connect to the server by ip:

iperf3 -c IP_ADDR_OF_SERVER

You will get ouput similar to this:

Accepted connection from IP_ADDR, port 38254
[  5] local IP_ADDR port 5201 connected to IP_ADDR port 38262
[ ID] Interval           Transfer     Bitrate
[  5]   0.00-1.00   sec   107 MBytes   893 Mbits/sec
[  5]   1.00-2.00   sec   112 MBytes   937 Mbits/sec
[  5]   2.00-3.00   sec   112 MBytes   936 Mbits/sec
[  5]   3.00-4.00   sec   111 MBytes   928 Mbits/sec
[  5]   4.00-5.00   sec   111 MBytes   935 Mbits/sec
[  5]   5.00-6.00   sec   111 MBytes   929 Mbits/sec
[  5]   6.00-7.00   sec   112 MBytes   938 Mbits/sec
[  5]   7.00-8.00   sec   112 MBytes   936 Mbits/sec
[  5]   8.00-9.00   sec   112 MBytes   936 Mbits/sec
[  5]   9.00-10.00  sec   111 MBytes   935 Mbits/sec
[  5]  10.00-10.04  sec  4.78 MBytes   934 Mbits/sec
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
[ ID] Interval           Transfer     Bitrate
[  5]   0.00-10.04  sec  1.09 GBytes   930 Mbits/sec                  receiver

10 GB NICs

eBay

  • Mellanox ConnectX-3 10Gb CX312A or CX312B
  • Intel x520-DA

Firewall Appliances:

pfSense

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