Reliable router/firewall with good VLAN and QOS support for home?

ultradianguy

New Member
Jan 12, 2021
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Hi - I'm looking to set up multiple VLANS at home to isolate primary computers, iot, guest network, cameras. Given the working from home situation, I also want to have configurable QOS to make sure my video meetings maintain bandwidth when someone is watching netflix. I'm going to be upgrading my FIOS from 80Mbps to at least 400 Mbps. Initially, the Ubiquiti Unifi line seemed like exactly what I need, but the more I read, the more I see about issues, bugs, undocumented limitations, etc. More reading - EdgeRouter rather than Unifi seems more solid and mature - but even there, when I dig into reviews from people who sound like they know their stuff, it seems there are still big issues with Ubiquiti. My impression is it's hit or miss. So my question is - is there not a product out there suitable for a home network, with good VLAN support, and QOS support, that is solid, reliable, can firmware updated without bricking (saw more than one complaint about this for EdgeRouter), etc? I'm willing to spend up to $200. I plan to have some managed switches and separate wireless APs.
 

BoredSysadmin

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Mar 2, 2019
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What you really asking for are not typical home features, but smb/enterprise. Combined with the tiny budget your selection will be very narrow, for companies offering SMB/Enterprise equipment near SOHO prices.
Ubiquiti you already know off. All I could say I have 3 of their UAP-AC-Pro Wifi APs and they definitely solved my home wifi issues.
Did you consider Netgate? Thought I'd double your budget and go at least with the SG-3100 model to better future-proof your system.
 
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RTM

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Jan 26, 2014
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I suppose a common alternative to Ubiquiti gear that might fit your budget, would be a router from Mikrotik.
However I do not have any experience with their QoS functionality, so I am not sure how well it works.

Likewise, you could build a machine and put pfSense on it, that should also fit the bill (again I do not have experience configuring QoS).
I, personally would be more inclined to do this as opposed to using a router from Mikrotik/UBNT, as it gives you more freedom (don't like pfSense, use something else). Another advantage is you can probably use old "leftover" hardware, or even buy cheap used hardware like the following:
Note: Examples are just the cheapest I could find (HP t730 and quad port LP NIC respectively), you will want to do your own research if you go down this road (I would probably get an Intel NIC instead of Broadcom), there should be plenty of information on the T730 on the forum (example: @WANg posted a resource on this device here: https://forums.servethehome.com/ind...730-thin-client-the-little-box-that-could.41/).
 
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ultradianguy

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Jan 12, 2021
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Thanks for the suggestions all. I got input elsewhere that the Edge Router 4 is actually quite stable, so I may go that way as it's available for under $200. But I have also been considering pfSense.
 
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ultradianguy

New Member
Jan 12, 2021
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What you really asking for are not typical home features, but smb/enterprise. Combined with the tiny budget your selection will be very narrow, for companies offering SMB/Enterprise equipment near SOHO prices.
Ubiquiti you already know off. All I could say I have 3 of their UAP-AC-Pro Wifi APs and they definitely solved my home wifi issues.
Did you consider Netgate? Thought I'd double your budget and go at least with the SG-3100 model to better future-proof your system.
Just to clarify - I meant $200 for the router - not for the whole package including APs and switches!
 

j_h_o

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Apr 21, 2015
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I've been doing Ubiquiti ER-4, coupled with Ruckus R710 APs. No issues with stability; I had issues with the ERLite-3 years ago, but that was basically failed flash inside, or generally PSU issues.
 

John Burns

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Jul 12, 2016
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I have a ubiquiti usg pro 4 up for sale. Its been rock solid for me, I just changed to a UniFi dream machine. if it wasn’t for the 10gbe ports on it, I might be selling it instead of the usg
 

sleeper404

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Jan 10, 2021
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Have you considered one of these aliexpress Qotom fanless PCs? For about $250-300 you can spec one out with a decent core i3/i5 and 8GB memory and a small SSD, then load pfSense or OPNsense on it. I use one for a zerotier SD-WAN connector into AWS/Azure environments with solid success.

 
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ultradianguy

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Jan 12, 2021
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I decided to go for Edge Router 4, along with managed Unifi switches and an AC-LR access point. Found a site with instructions for setting up VLANs and firewall rules for almost exactly this set of equipment. Not quite as seamless as all Unifi, but I prefer the additional flexibility and the ER 4 seems to have superb performance.
Thanks all for your input.
 

Occamsrazor

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Feb 23, 2018
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Have you considered one of these aliexpress Qotom fanless PCs? For about $250-300 you can spec one out with a decent core i3/i5 and 8GB memory and a small SSD, then load pfSense or OPNsense on it. I use one for a zerotier SD-WAN connector into AWS/Azure environments with solid success.
I guess you are using OPNSense with Zerotier, right? Or did you find a way to run Zerotier on pfSense?
 

sleeper404

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Jan 10, 2021
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I guess you are using OPNSense with Zerotier, right? Or did you find a way to run Zerotier on pfSense?
That's correct, I'm not a fan of pfSense being a traditional network guy and not a BSD guy their interfaces and way to doing configurations irritated me. OPNsense felt a lot more composed from a config standpoint.
 

coxhaus

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Jul 7, 2020
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I use a Cisco RV340 router and different Cisco L3 switches like the SG350-10P setup as L3. I have a Cisco 24 port 10 gig version but more expensive. I use 2 Cisco WAP581 wireless APs setup as 1 virtual AP using Singlepoint setup. I run 4 VLANs. 1 VLAN is used sometimes and the other 3 VLANs are used every day

My wife runs Zoom almost every day and my granddaughter runs google classroom and plays a game on a second PC while I stream video, Netflix, Hulu, etc. Plus, I read forums a lot as I watch video. We all have iPhones and iPads that are running. I have 2 Wyze IP cameras running 24/7. This all runs without any problems or slowdowns.
 
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bbrain

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Mar 23, 2021
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UI is gonna get your needs done reasonably well. best to think of them as "prosumer". For about twice the money, you can get something a step up from Mikrotik like RTM said, has more of an enterprise feel to them "every option you can shake a stick at" kind of thing and will do whatever you want them to do, however, could be a little learning curve while you learn their setup. (don't get me wrong UI will also have a learning curve).

But I wouldn't be scared of UI products, I've used Edgerouters (er4/er12) in the past and they were great, updated firmware several times and never an issue, actually found it rather easy. From the sound of it, budget will matter more, I'd go UI and have some pretty GUIs :D