Subject: Re: multi-core router
To: Thomas E. Spanjaard <>
From: Robert Watson <>
List: tech-kern
Date: 11/04/2007 14:27:03
On Sat, 3 Nov 2007, Thomas E. Spanjaard wrote:

> Bill Stouder-Studenmund wrote:
>> The choices were OpenBSD 4.2 with the updated pf (supposedly lots of 
>> performance improvements) or FreeBSD 5.3 I think it was.
> Perhaps a bit off-topic, but if that option was really FreeBSD 5.3, I'd call 
> it a rather unfair comparison, as FreeBSD 5.3 is that much older than 
> OpenBSD 4.2, which was only released this week or so. Also, I don't think 
> FreeBSD 5.3 supports (as many) 10GbE adapters as newer 6.2/7-CURRENT 
> releases/snapshots do.

I would suggest running a FreeBD 7.0 beta (or full release if it's available 
when you do the experimentation).  It has both a more recent pf and 
significantly improved multiprocessor performance, and will run IP to 
completion in multiple threads (and hence on multiple cores).  It also 
includes vendor-supported 10gbps drivers from most of the major 10gbps 
vendors; the Chelsio and Myricom PCIe cards seem to perform particularly well. 
Using the new release will give you access to a lot more in the way of 
features, and also allow you to report any problems to us so that we can fix 
them :-).  FreeBSD 5.3 is a three-year-old release and predates a lot of our 
SMP networking work.

Robert N M Watson
Computer Laboratory
University of Cambridge