Many large IT operations using open source technology – operating systems, applications, development tools and databases. Why not in the router as well?
It’s a matter of Sam Noble, Chief of the system, the network thought the judicial Division, Supreme Court of New Mexico, while linking the search for a way to the state courts of a new centralized case management.
Noble wanted an affordable and flexible DSL router, but found that the ISP modems do not control the ability to remotely access the state of the local link, an important condition for the courts.
Alternatively, you can add maps to the series 2600-Frame Relay, ADSL, routers supplied by Cisco Systems, Inc., used in some courthouses, the most important functions, but the old equipment lacked the strength to support the performance of the firewall.
A third option, Juniper Networks NetScreen Firewall SSG20 Inc. / DSL router with the “missing many features we wanted, without limit as the command line with all the functions and interfaces of the tunnel,” said Noble.
A frustrated Noble decided to investigate is another option: Open-source router. The technology is developing, but not a favorite among managers.
Noble distributed first download an open source software from the router and with the support of Belmont, California, Vyatta Inc. on a laptop and ran a few preliminary tests. “I was particularly interested in whether the management interfaces are complete and feature-rich,” he said.
Impressed by the initial results Noble has a prototype site in Santa Fe to the performance of technology, economy and the ability to work with other technologies, the Court established the study of work. “We had a DSL to test and find the best settings without affecting our production network to make,” he said.
Noble believes that tests provide open-source router can do what he wanted. He also noted that the VPN concentrator, support for Border Gateway Protocol and URL filtering, and security packet capture “is not available or too costly to add to Cisco or NetScreen-Team”.
In April 2008, Noble began implementing Vyatta router device with an average of both sides of every month. After completion of the project in the next year the router – 514 in total – will be held from 40 to 50 locations around the state in case of centralized management system.
Analysts and users should be aware that managers should explore the use of open-source router is aware of its potential for support issues and compatibility that may occur with any open-source product. “Care must be taken during the deployment,” said Mark Fabbi, an analyst at Gartner Inc. “Not ready for world domination, but, but certainly an interesting basis for discussion.”
Trey Johnson, a member of staff at the University of Florida in Gainesville, said the selection of a technology company with a limited history of providing enterprise-level problems for IT administrators. “It’s a tough sell to get into a business model with him,” said Johnson.
The University uses to support an open-source Vyatta router. “[The router] was actually a company behind it – you can buy the support of IT, making it profitable,” said Johnson.
Others say that leave the community support, a trademark of Open Source are two guys in a business environment have. Communities often do not react as fast as IT managers want and not to give inexperienced users one-on-one instruction.
Noble and Johnson are two of a small but growing number of managers to avoid the property of router for open source alternatives for a variety of reasons.
Noble, for example, said that without pain, adaptation, the greatest benefit of technology. “The flexibility built with a stack of free software in our routers will allow us to make a small change – a pinch -. or supplement, and with minimal impact on long-term plans for others”
Hassler, says Barry, president of Hassler Communication Systems Technology Inc., which designs and ISP’s network in Dayton, Ohio, he iproute a Linux distribution based on open source routing uses the Linux Foundation for large users in your organization by providing Internet access enterprise-class at an affordable price. “I am using a standard PC, Linux, with integrated routing capabilities,” he said. “What we do with these boxes from multiple interfaces, which are fairly standard routing routing, but other than to do We manage also able to increase the bandwidth. ”
Hassler believes that a comparable Cisco router would be more than twice the Linux-based router you choose iproute costs. “It helps [General] low cost,” he said.
Enterprise Solutions IT-Consulting Center CMIT Rhode Island was installed firmware DD-WRT open source on two Linksys wireless router for additional features, said Adam Tucker, a network engineer in the company. “We wanted a robust system to manage our wireless QoS for voice over IP [and] things like that, and add some of the most advanced filters and things firmware [old] just not taken into charge, able to prioritize, “said.
Tucker said that the router works perfectly for over a year.
Fabbi said he sees great potential for open-source router, especially in the service industry and retail food, where large companies often have thousands of links to websites without breaking the budget. “You think of a McDonald’s or Burger King [where] there are thousands of places like the franchise, but still want to make a link,” he said.
In other industries, open source technology and is designed for server-based applications for routing, such as virtualization adapted Fabbi said. He stressed that the router virtualization applications are limited only by the imagination of developers. “Sometimes it’s as simple as a distributed print servers;. Sometimes it is caching video distribution ”
Ready for business?
Matthias Machowinski, an analyst at Infonetics Research in Campbell, Calif., said he believes the open-source router for now able to manage the workload at the company. “If you have reasonable requirements – a desktop-size or a normal amount of traffic – so in terms of performance, must be able to handle the traffic load,” he said. The only exceptions are listed the major companies operating an extraordinary amount of traffic, how distributors of video content.
Open-source routers are also start their own peculiarities in the front, said Machowinski. “They started not as feature rich as part of trade flows [products], but the open-source router manufacturers have reduced this gap,” he said.
Open-source router in three basic forms: software that turns a standard PC or server on a combination router and firewall, can be used in the firmware of an existing router, and applications that are preinstalled with Free Software Source Routing come. Vyatta also DD-WRT and iproute, open-source technologies such as XORP routing Xorp.org downloadable pfSense, a free, open-source operating system FreeBSD distribution for use as a firewall and router to be adjusted.
Probably, despite a steadily increasing profile and not a growing number of followers, the open-source router to overturn the status quo of the market in the short term. This is because in the field of open source still microscopic compared to the market share of the top sellers of real estate, including giant Cisco, about 80% of the total market. But Cisco has recently begun to make representations to the world of open source.
Edwards is a writer technology in the Phoenix area.