CWWK/Topton/... Nxxx quad NIC router

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Becks0815

Well-Known Member
Oct 15, 2022
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After 10 days uptime, 3.5 TB upload and 1.5 TB download according to opnsense stats, I must say: This N100 with the case type C rocks. I haven't had any problems, no crashes, and the system deals with 20 MB/sec in both directions at the same time with less than 10% CPU load according to Proxmox. It draws less power than the previous J3160 box (6.5W instead of 7.5W), and while the old case typically was around 40 °C warm, this one here is now barely above room temperature.

And last but not least: what I first didn't want to do - running opnsense in Proxmox, is a great way to add additional internet relevant services like wireguard or pihole to the same computer, without the need of using physical connections between the VMs.
 

Kenjutso

New Member
Apr 27, 2023
4
9
3
Looks like it's been all sorted out but here are my memory details.

Code:
dmidecode --type 17
# dmidecode 3.3
Getting SMBIOS data from sysfs.
SMBIOS 3.5.0 present.
# SMBIOS implementations newer than version 3.3.0 are not
# fully supported by this version of dmidecode.

Handle 0x0028, DMI type 17, 92 bytes
Memory Device
        Array Handle: 0x0027
        Error Information Handle: Not Provided
        Total Width: 64 bits
        Data Width: 64 bits
        Size: 32 GB
        Form Factor: SODIMM
        Set: None
        Locator: Controller0-ChannelA-DIMM0
        Bank Locator: BANK 0
        Type: <OUT OF SPEC>
        Type Detail: Synchronous
        Speed: 4800 MT/s
        Manufacturer: Crucial Technology
        Serial Number: E*******
        Asset Tag: 987*******
        Part Number: CT32G48C40S5.M16A1 
        Rank: 2
        Configured Memory Speed: 4800 MT/s
        Minimum Voltage: 1.1 V
        Maximum Voltage: 1.1 V
        Configured Voltage: 1.1 V
        Memory Technology: DRAM
        Memory Operating Mode Capability: Volatile memory
        Firmware Version: Not Specified
        Module Manufacturer ID: Bank 6, Hex 0x9B
        Module Product ID: Unknown
        Memory Subsystem Controller Manufacturer ID: Unknown
        Memory Subsystem Controller Product ID: Unknown
        Non-Volatile Size: None
        Volatile Size: 32 GB
        Cache Size: None
        Logical Size: None
Code:
lshw -C memory
  *-firmware              
       description: BIOS
       vendor: American Megatrends International, LLC.
       physical id: 0
       version: 5.27
       date: 03/18/2023
       size: 64KiB
       capabilities: pci upgrade shadowing cdboot bootselect socketedrom edd int13floppynec int13floppytoshiba int13floppy360 int13floppy1200 int13floppy720 int13floppy2880 int5printscreen int14serial int17printer int10video acpi usb biosbootspecification uefi
  *-memory
       description: System Memory
       physical id: 27
       slot: System board or motherboard
       size: 32GiB
     *-bank:0
          description: SODIMM Synchronous 4800 MHz (0.2 ns)
          product: CT32G48C40S5.M16A1
          vendor: Crucial Technology
          physical id: 0
          serial: E********
          slot: Controller0-ChannelA-DIMM0
          size: 32GiB
          width: 64 bits
          clock: 505MHz (2.0ns)
     *-bank:1
          description: [empty]
          physical id: 1
          slot: Controller1-ChannelA-DIMM0
  *-cache:0
       description: L1 cache
       physical id: 32
       slot: L1 Cache
       size: 128KiB
       capacity: 128KiB
       capabilities: synchronous internal write-back data
       configuration: level=1
  *-cache:1
       description: L1 cache
       physical id: 33
       slot: L1 Cache
       size: 256KiB
       capacity: 256KiB
       capabilities: synchronous internal write-back instruction
       configuration: level=1
  *-cache:2
       description: L2 cache
       physical id: 34
       slot: L2 Cache
       size: 2MiB
       capacity: 2MiB
       capabilities: synchronous internal write-back unified
       configuration: level=2
  *-cache:3
       description: L3 cache
       physical id: 35
       slot: L3 Cache
       size: 6MiB
       capacity: 6MiB
       capabilities: synchronous internal write-back unified
       configuration: level=3
  *-memory UNCLAIMED
       description: RAM memory
       product: Intel Corporation
       vendor: Intel Corporation
       physical id: 14.2
       bus info: pci@0000:00:14.2
       version: 00
       width: 64 bits
       clock: 33MHz (30.3ns)
       capabilities: pm cap_list
       configuration: latency=0
       resources: iomemory:600-5ff iomemory:600-5ff memory:6001010000-6001013fff memory:6001016000-6001016fff
 
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casulo

Member
Nov 30, 2022
49
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8
Guys, i got the 2 LAN port n100 mini pc/firewall. https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005004652134066.html

I'm using a 16GB teamgroup memory stick. The kind that advertises as 3200Mhz, but runs at 2667. XMP needed to run it at 3200. This mini pc runs with a AMI BIOS. Any setting for running the memory at 3200? Can't find any setting related to XMP there. Inumerous settings.

Also, benchmarking the nvme disk shows x2 speeds instead of the advertised PCIE3.0x4. Maybe some settings in BIOS should be changed for x4?

Temps on windows, iddle, are around 45º. But the case is very hot. If i stress the cpu, it almost burns. Something is wrong here. I also have a SATA ssd there. Almost didn't fit. I fear it burns and lose my data :)
 

Becks0815

Well-Known Member
Oct 15, 2022
238
323
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Buy a power meter, otherwise you can't see what or if any changes in the BIOS/OS have an effect on the power consumption and in the end on how to lower the temperature of the machine. Then try to tune the various aspects - P1/P2 levels, C-states, p-states, CPU governor, tunables on Linux/FreeBSD,...

Besides that, what did you expect? You have chosen a pretty small case with small heat exchange fins, passive cooled. This thing will run hot, no matter of the tunings to lower the power consumption in idle mode. As soon as you really start using the CPU, it will run hot, and it also will stay at least really warm in idle mode. Your only chances to use it is to attach a fan on top of it.

In the BIOS, I haven't found an option to change the speed of the RAM, so there is a high chance you need to test another module to see if it's identified in the correct way. The one I use runs at 4800 MHz, the one I have uses DDR5 RAM. Also, the CWWK has intel i226 NICs installed, this one here runs Realtek NICs.

Haven't tested the speed of the drive in my box. I don't care, it is fast enough for a firewall, and for a file server there is not enough space for hard drives. But based on the other findings (DDR4/DDR5 RAM, Intel vs. RT NICs) there might be a chance they just used 2 PCIe lanes and not 4 for the drive , which is strange, because just by saving two NICs (each takes one lane) this could be achieved.
 
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AnthonyUK

Member
May 9, 2023
92
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Also, benchmarking the nvme disk shows x2 speeds instead of the advertised PCIE3.0x4. Maybe some settings in BIOS should be changed for x4?
I read the advert as the device having 4x NVME slots.

Ignore that. I was looking at one of the DDR5 variants that support upto 4 NVMEs.
 
Last edited:

casulo

Member
Nov 30, 2022
49
21
8
Buy a power meter, otherwise you can't see what or if any changes in the BIOS/OS have an effect on the power consumption and in the end on how to lower the temperature of the machine. Then try to tune the various aspects - P1/P2 levels, C-states, p-states, CPU governor, tunables on Linux/FreeBSD,...
This forum needs a wiki. I have seen good tips for that here, but they get buried deep under so many replies.

Besides that, what did you expect? You have chosen a pretty small case with small heat exchange fins, passive cooled. This thing will run hot, no matter of the tunings to lower the power consumption in idle mode. As soon as you really start using the CPU, it will run hot, and it also will stay at least really warm in idle mode. Your only chances to use it is to attach a fan on top of it.
You're right, after booting and idling, it gets around midle to high thirties Cº, after stressing the cpu (max 67º), it simply doesn't get lower than 45-46º. Got this one, because i had a non-used ddr4 stick. The rest of the n100 mini-pcs, either have embedded memory or use ddr5.


In the BIOS, I haven't found an option to change the speed of the RAM, so there is a high chance you need to test another module to see if it's identified in the correct way.
I tested with another stick, gskill 32GB 3200Mhz. Someone at the other thread, said that with a 32GB stick, it was needed to run it headless. Here it ran without problems. 3200 speed. At least on windows. I benchmarked, no crashes, no problems. Ironic, how the bios has the most esoteric settings, but misses the most vulgar ones, like voltage and timings.

Haven't tested the speed of the drive in my box. I don't care, it is fast enough for a firewall, and for a file server there is not enough space for hard drives. But based on the other findings (DDR4/DDR5 RAM, Intel vs. RT NICs) there might be a chance they just used 2 PCIe lanes and not 4 for the drive , which is strange, because just by saving two NICs (each takes one lane) this could be achieved.
Well, i do intend to run some VMs here. 1500MB/s is enough, but if they advertise x4 speeds, i want it. On this case, a ssd disk hardly fits, definitely not if it's attached to the cover. The supplied cable has a big plug. There is also a msata slot, so actually plenty of options here. 1 nvme, 1 ssd, 1 msata. Plus another one if adapting the wifi slot to ssd/nvme. Plus the usb ports.


Anyway, i might keep it instead of returning it. Performance wise, it's not bad. Passmark is around 6000, single thread is 2070. Pitty about the 2666Mhz memory. Maybe later i'll use that 32GB stick. I disabled intel's power management on Linux (intel_pstate=disable on grub), because there was always a core at full speed, even when idling.


EDIT: I installed rocky linux 9, temps are high because there is this kworker/0:0-kacpi_notify always on 20% cpu. Any ideas why this? kernel 6.3.2 from elrepo.

EDIT2: Ok, found which interrupt was causing issues and disabled it. grep . -r /sys/firmware/acpi/interrupts/ |grep -v invalid to find which one (the one with a high number except gpe_all), and added acpi_mask_gpe=0x6F to grub. Doing echo mask > /sys/firmware/acpi/interrupts/gpe6F also fixes it.
 
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Stovar

Active Member
Dec 27, 2022
180
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Just checking some benchmarks out from etaprimes past videos and above ones:

geekbench 6

N305
Single core =1269
Multi core =4860


N100
Single core =960
Mutli core =2658


N5105
Single core =587
Mutli core =2078

That N305 eq12 is pretty decent 8 watts idle, 27watts avg gaming, max 33 watts. Would be interesting to hear rough surfing/YT power wattage.
 

Becks0815

Well-Known Member
Oct 15, 2022
238
323
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You're right, after booting and idling, it gets around midle to high thirties Cº, after stressing the cpu (max 67º), it simply doesn't get lower than 45-46º.
My first box (J3160) had a similar small case, and I never managed to get the CPU temp below 45°C, and the case always was pretty warm. One of the reasons why I bought the CWWK and not Topton version, because of the much bigger heat exchange fins. This is the N100 after being stressed for 12 hours. The case now also is warm, but far from what I consider hot.

Code:
coretemp-isa-0000
Adapter: ISA adapter
Package id 0:  +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 0:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 1:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 2:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 3:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)

acpitz-acpi-0
Adapter: ACPI interface
temp1:        +27.8°C  (crit = +110.0°C)

nvme-pci-0100
Adapter: PCI adapter
Composite:    +46.9°C  (low  =  -5.2°C, high = +79.8°C)
                       (crit = +84.8°C)
With RAM it is hit&miss. Not only on these boxes here, but it also can happen to any other mainboard.
 
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casulo

Member
Nov 30, 2022
49
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8
Code:
Code:
coretemp-isa-0000
Adapter: ISA adapter
Package id 0:  +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 0:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 1:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 2:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)
Core 3:        +41.0°C  (high = +105.0°C, crit = +105.0°C)

acpitz-acpi-0
Adapter: ACPI interface
temp1:        +27.8°C  (crit = +110.0°C)

nvme-pci-0100
Adapter: PCI adapter
Composite:    +46.9°C  (low  =  -5.2°C, high = +79.8°C)
                       (crit = +84.8°C)

Alright, mine is at 39º - 41º too. But only after i doing what i posted above (quote below). People say, a BIOS update usually fixes this. Mine is very recent, from april 2023.

EDIT: I installed rocky linux 9, temps are high because there is this kworker/0:0-kacpi_notify always on 20% cpu. Any ideas why this? kernel 6.3.2 from elrepo.

EDIT2: Ok, found which interrupt was causing issues and disabled it. grep . -r /sys/firmware/acpi/interrupts/ |grep -v invalid to find which one (the one with a high number except gpe_all), and added acpi_mask_gpe=0x6F to grub. Doing echo mask > /sys/firmware/acpi/interrupts/gpe6F also fixes it.
 

casulo

Member
Nov 30, 2022
49
21
8
Alright, i cleaned the cpu and put some 20 year old Cooler Master thermal paste and now temps on idle after a passmark cpu test are around 34-35º. Nice! Going to do the same on another mini firewall.
 
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skjom

New Member
Apr 30, 2023
5
1
3
Wondering what people use all the ports for ,
One for WAN, one for LAN I guess , but if the LAN is going to a switch why the need of the other ports ?
 
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ocny153

New Member
Apr 28, 2023
12
5
3
I've just placed an order for a barebones N100 directly from cwwk.net. We'll see how long it takes to reach the UK.
It arrived this morning via Yanwen and then Royal Mail. Not bad considering last week there were holidays in China. I've installed the 16GB stick and 500GB NVME drive and it boots up. I don't think I'll bother with replacing the thermal compound for now. I'll check temps once I've got it up and running.

Will start the Proxmox install later on. Need to decide whether to use ZFS or stick with EXT4. Another thing I need to decide is whether to partition the drive to have a second partition for VM backups? Or is it possible to back up to the same partition? Backing up to the same partition would be preferable, it would be easy to add a second drive in the future (using the adapter).

I've also ordered a TP Link Omada TP-SL2008P switch and an EAP610 access point.
 

ocny153

New Member
Apr 28, 2023
12
5
3
Wondering what people use all the ports for ,
One for WAN, one for LAN I guess , but if the LAN is going to a switch why the need of the other ports ?
I plan to use one for WAN, two to connect to the switch in a LAG, and the last one will be the LAN for Proxmox and any other VMs. For the WAN and LAG ports I will use PCIe passthrough to the opnsense VM.
 

Stovar

Active Member
Dec 27, 2022
180
86
28
Wondering what people use all the ports for ,
One for WAN, one for LAN I guess , but if the LAN is going to a switch why the need of the other ports ?
I could be doing my set up wrong or just old fashioned... I just prefer 6 if not more ethernet ports since prefer wired connection for my 2 desktop pcs, I also have my Nvidia shield and Unifi access hub connected to another one and then one for the WAN so 5 all together. Rest of the home devices printers, tv, mobiles all wifi.

I found switches add more wiring mess and further electricity wattage drain, also the TP links and netgear £20-30 switches I used a good 10 years ago use to sometimes freeze so required a reboot, with a 6 nic CWWK N5105 no such issue with the above.

But I am old fashioned so probably can improve to wifi and wireless or maybe latest switches are more reliable not sure.
 
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