(Last Updated On: August 6, 2023)
Internet helps you with your everyday tasks, to say the least. If you have a good internet connection, you might get your work done in a matter of time. However, if your internet equipment is not supportive enough, even a fast internet connection would be useless. We have compiled some of the best hardware for pfsense in the article. We suggest you have a look at them so that you can differentiate which hardware is best.
That is because, your equipment can not support the speed of your internet and is not providing you the right results. It is essential to have a set of equipment that supports your internet and gives you the best out of it.
One of the most important parts of the internet-related equipment is the router. Routers allow your devices to make a network. A good router can give you the best speed of your internet. Routers come in different types, such as Ethernet, Wireless, or that have both connectivity options.
The latter type is the most used one in this day and age. The reason is that most people prefer both connectivity options. Sometimes wireless does not provide as stable connection as Ethernet. No matter the type of your router, it must have some essential features to support an internet connection.
If you are unable to buy a good router because you can not afford it or your current router does not provide you the best results of your internet, well there is no need to spend more money. pfSense is there to help you.
For those who are wondering, what is pfSense? pfSense is an open-source free router software for computer. It turns a computer into a router that can be can be configured easily without having to purchase a new router.
With that said, let’s discuss some benefits and features of pfSense and why is it a better choice than buying a new router.
Because it is an open-source tool, you might think it is not secure enough. However, that is not the case. It provides a firewall that secures all the sources of your system.
This might include protocols, IP addresses, traffic of TCP and UDP. Moreover, pfSense provides p0f. In simple words, it is a passive operating system that allows users to filter the OS of the connected internet. It is safe to say that pfSense provides all the necessary security options that a router does. Only difference being that pfSense does it without a cost.
2- Free of Cost:
Although it requires a computer that is dedicated for the router purposes, it still costs less than a router, let us explain why. There is always an old computer present in our homes or if not, you can buy one for a very cheap price. The plus point would be that you can use the computer for pfSense as well as other purposes.
3- Variety of features:
pfSense is considered to be more reliable than traditional routers. There are a number of reasons to support that, mainly because of its vast range of features. Also, pfSense is updated every now and then to keep it fresh and to deliver even better results.
Although pfSense does have a better library of tools than a traditional router, it requires some hardware for support.
Best Hardware for pfSense (Comparison)
|SG-5100 Netgate||8.5 x 5.5 x 1.75 inches||3 Pounds|
|Protectli Vault 4 Port Celeron J3160||4.5 x 4.3 x 1.5 inches||2.4 Pounds||Check Price|
|Protectli Vault 6 Port||6 x 5 x 2 inches||3.35 Pounds||Check Price|
|Protectli Vault 6 Port - Intel Dual Core i5||6 x 5 x 2 inches||2.2 Pounds||Check Price|
|Protectli Vault 4 Port intel Quad Core||5.25 x 5 x 1.5 inches||2 Pounds||Check Price|
|Protectli Vault 4 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC||4.5 x 4.3 x 1.5 inches||2.35 Pounds||Check Price|
From a reputable brand, Netgate, this appliance comes with a quad-core 2.2 GHz processor that provides faster data handling than most of its competitors. With 4 GB DDR4 Ram and six WAN/LAN ports, SG-5100 supports 3660 Mbps of data transfer speed.
It comes with pre-installed pfSense Plus software to connect and use instantly. SG-5100 has a user-friendly GUI that makes it easier to access the features of pfSense.
It provides options for VPN, firewall, gateway, cloud networking, router, and much more. The appliance also comes with built-in Amazon VPC Wizard.
With its help, you can create connection with Amazon EC2. SG-5100 supports PPTP, IPv6, OpenVPN, and many other protocols.
It is compatible with AES-NI and provides no heating with its passive cooling options. It provides compatibility with 3rd party applications. It allows configuration and management just like a traditional router with additional features. SG-5100 is fast, secure, and easy to use hardware for pfSense routing.
|Smooth performance||Does not support 1G internet speeds with some plugins|
|Support for multiple protocols||Middling throughput speed|
|Firewall, AES-NI computability|
Ready to use right outside the box, SG-5100 is a hardware that provides the best compatibility for pfSense and its other tools. It supports all the major internet protocols and works in an efficient way to provide you the best results you can get from your internet.
SG-5100 is one of the best choices you can make in terms of hardware for pfSense, whether you are a beginner or an experience individual. This reliable appliance is guaranteed to provide you the best out of your internet.
If you are looking for a hardware that provides a tight security system, you have found the right one. Celeron J3160 delivers some of the most secure internet protocols.
Hence its name, Protectli Vault. It has a 2.2 GHz Quad-core CPU with AES-NI compatibility, providing better facilities than most of the other pfSense hardware.
Celeron J3160 has four Gigabit Ethernet ports. It also has two 3.0 USB ports that allow you to connect a USB device directly or a printer that can be used by your network. Other ports of the appliance include two HDMI ports and one port for RJ-45 COM.
Celeron J3160 has a ‘Barebone’ component that provides a number of customization options for users. To provide a user-friendly experience, it comes with no pre-installed operating system.
The appliance is perfectly suitable for pfSense and other open-source routing software including untangle, OPNsense, etc. Celeron J3160 offers US-based support of every kind to its users. Furthermore, 30 days money back guarantee also included. However, you will be perfectly satisfied by the product and will not return it.
|Highly secure||Has heating issues|
|Fast data handling with 8 GB RAM|
|USB ports, easy to set up|
Providing all the useful features and a powerful security system, Celeron J3160 is the perfect hardware for pfSense. It is a feature-rich appliance that supports all the major internet protocols.
Also, its customization makes it much more accessible to users than other pfSense hardware. The number of available ports for different uses adds another plus point for Celeron J3160, making it one of the best on our list.
Another product from Protectli proves the efficiency of the brand. Protectli Vault 6 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC is no exception.
It has all the essential features that are necessary to support pfSense and is an easy to install piece of hardware. The appliance provides a super compact security system to give you the most secure experience you can get.
It has a 2.4 GHZ dual-core i3 processor with 46 bit. AES-NI support and smart cache storage are other notable features of the hardware.
Protectli Vault Firewall Micro Appliance has six Ethernet Gigabit ports and one HDMI port. It has four 3.0 USB ports to provide connectivity for storage devices and printers that will be available for the entire network.
The barebones component of the hardware provides customization options. The firewall system of the appliance is compatible with pfSense and much other popular open-source software.
All these powerful features combined with the 30-day money back guarantee, make this appliance one of the best on our list.
|AES-NI support||Needs proper cooling|
|Six Ethernet Gigabit ports|
|Customizable, easy installation|
If you care about the security of your internet and you must, this hardware is for you. Protectli Vault 6 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC is a feature-rich and one of the most secure appliances out there. It works with pfSense and allows various customization options as well as faster processing than most of the other pfSense hardware in the market.
Imagine an appliance with compact security along with one of the fastest processors you can find in pfSense hardware.
The Protectli 6 Port vault, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC – Intel Dual Core i5 is best option. This powerful hardware provides a vast range of features as well as a faster data-processing mechanism with its Intel Dual Core i5 7200U 2.4 GHz.
It is basically the same as other Protectli Vault appliances mentioned in our list, however, it is the most powerful one.
It provides hardware support for up to 64GB of DDR4 RAM and comes with 32 GB installed RAM. Protectli Vault 6 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC – Intel Dual Core i5 has four 3.0 USB ports, allowing users to connect even more USB devices including storage devices, printers, etc. This provides a good working for the network.
|Availability of ports necessary ports||Requires additional help for cooling|
|Tight security protocols|
|Faster data-handling with more RAM|
|Quick and easy installation|
Having one of the best security systems out there, Protectli Vault 6 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC – Intel Dual Core i5 provides security protocols that are not present in many other pfSense hardware.
The availability of USB, Ethernet, and HDMI ports make this hardware even more helpful to users. It is safe to say that the security and other advanced features of the appliance make it one of the best out there of its category.
To say that the Protectli products are reliable would be an understatement. The only issue they seem to have is the heating problem, otherwise their hardware are top-notch and Protectli Vault 4 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC – Intel Quad Core is no exception. Offering a wide library of useful routing tools and a super strong security system, it is easily one of the best ones out there.
While this one has less USB and Ethernet ports than the previous Protectli appliances, it has the most powerful 2.0 GHz Quad-core processor, yet in our list.
Supporting hardware up to 8GB of DDR3 RAM and 128GB mSATA SSD, it is safe to say this appliance is one of the fastest data processing hardware out there. It comes with no pre-installed OS, allowing you to choose the one that you like.
|Quad-core processor||Lack of options for AES-NI|
|Highly compatible with pfSense||Has better cooling options than most of Protectli products but still the appliance gets hot sometimes|
|Great firewall options|
The fast and powerful quad-core processor is the main highlight of the appliance, while the availability of ports makes it more user-friendly and accessible. Protectli Vault 4 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC – Intel Quad Core handles data faster than most of its competitors and provides you the best of your internet speed.
One of the most reliable and secure hardware for pfSense is easily Protectli Vault 4 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC – Intel Quad Core.
It is a feature-rich appliance that has all the necessary tools that will help you operate your computer as a router. It has four Ethernet ports and two 3.0 USB ports that help you share a device with the network. The appliance has a great firewall system and comes with a 30-day money back guarantee.
|Tons of features||Temperature problem|
|USB and Ethernet ports||Costly|
|Simple installation, highly secure|
It is easily one of the best ones mentioned in our list. Mainly due to its reliability that is achieved by its powerful features. Protectli Vault 4 Port, Firewall Micro Appliance/Mini PC – Intel Quad Core definitely leaves a mark in our list of best hardware for pfSense with its useful tools and secure environment.
In order to get the best out of your Internet, your router must be supportive and in order to support your pfSense router, your hardware must be capable enough. The list shows all the best hardware for pfSense and helps you pick the one that is most suitable for you by going through all the features, pros, and cons.
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