Firewall/Router Recommendations?

I have a Netgear FM114P. Supposedly it was nice when I bought it, but
a) I’m having problems where I lose my connection and have to reboot the router to solve it… like once a day. It’s a drag. This happened for a while in the past and was “solved” by upgrading the firmware, but
b) Everytime you upgrade the firmware you have to re-enter all your router settings. I HATE this. No punishment could be too severe for the engineer who OK’d that design.

It supports 4 lan ports, which I’m already using, so I’d probably go for an 8-port model this time around. It also supports wireless, which I need.

I’d also like a graceful solution to the “port forwarding” issues I run into when trying to play WoW from multiple machines. FM114P will only handle forwarding to one machine, and there is no real workaround.

Suggestions? Is there something better on the market? Is there something I should do with the FM114P to make it work better?

The linksys models are very popular. I’ve been using the same unit for 3 years, and I’m very, very happy with it.

You can specify which IP address to forward to, unlike your current router. My only complaint is that it only allows me to forward 10 port ranges. So, if you run a lot of internet sevices from your computers, you might hit the max limit, and have to combine ranges.

Has anyone tried the D-Link DGL-4300? Reviews seem to speak favorably…

Get a cheapo wrt54g and install the hacked sveasoft firmware and you’re done. That hacked firmware is some seriously cool stuff… adds a lot of features.

Note-- this is not piracy. It’s illegal to charge for GPL’d software. Sveasoft is moderately evil, but the firmware is tops.

What does the hacked firmware do that’s so great and how comparable is it to the DGL-4300, which implements QoS for games?

We liked it to.

I’m using one now, and it’s faster than the original D-Link 802.11g router I was using. By “faster”, I don’t necessarily mean the throughput is higher, but net access seems more responsive. It’s got a faster embedded CPU, I think.

Can’t speak for the gaming stuff, though Jason seemed to like it well enough. I believe there’s a firmware update that addresses a couple of the issues that Jason uncovered.

The linksys has a 200mhz cpu, which is certainly enough for routing packets at like 500k/sec. The hacked firmware adds all kinds of stuff… QoS, VPN (yes you can vpn INTO the router), allows you to tweak the wireless transmit power extending range by like 3x, load balancing, you can SSH into it and get a linux bash promt, all kinds of stuff. It really turns the wrt54g into a friggin powerhouse.

Hmm, so netgear’s config options aren’t too good? Saw this at newegg:

Looks like a good deal. There is a dlink one though as well. Friend needs a router for dsl and wants to get their notebook hooked up as well.

If you’re not interested in fucking around with flashing firmware, etc, just shop by price. Most of those features are of no use to (and indeed would confuse) the average consumer.

One feature I could definitely use is port triggering, which the FM114P doesn’t support.

I just want to that Stusser for his suggestion (although I got a slightly faster wrt54gs); even without the sveasoft stuff it does port triggering, and the hacked firmware just adds a ton of other features.

Thanks for the tip.

Yeah that firmware is really cool, isn’t it? Pity the devs are trying to profit off GPL code.

I just want a wireless router that doesn’t need resetting, ever. I don’t need super speed or anything – I just need to not have to unplug or reset the damn thing every couple of weeks. I’ve gone through 2 cheapo Dlink and Netgear routers, and I’m totally ready to spend double their price to get something with the same features that’s solid as a rock. UDP traffic in particular really lays the hurt on the routers I’ve tried.

The DGL 4300 really is a good router. The “GameFuel” stuff that is supposed to give packet priority to games and VOIP so that they get low pings even when you do big transfers, it works pretty good. It’s not perfect, but it helps.

What I like about it, though, are the following:

  1. Good wireless speed, and if you have other D-Link “super-G” stuff, you get the channel-bonding extra bandwidth. Not a big deal, but it’s there.

  2. Good firmware and setup options. You can forward ports, and it’s got lots of apps already in a drop-down list on the setup page for that (TeamSpeak and such) if you need outside people to connect to some server you’re running. But for playing games, it just plain works gracefully. We’ve got three gamers, all with PCs and Xbox Live, and we never have problems. We’ve all been playing WoW at once without any need to open ports or forward them or anything. I have my Xbox hooked up through WiFi and it works fine.

  3. It’s Gig-E. For some reason, it’s actually pretty hard to find gigabit routers without stepping up to more expensive 8-port switches and such. Last time I checked, this was the only Gig-E device in the “little 4-port home gateway” category I could find. So that’s great for big transfers between local machines.


  1. It costs more than other home gateways. Not so much that you can’t afford it, but still…

  2. If you enable the thing that breaks big packets up into small packets to ensure smoother flow, Xbox Live stops working. This packet-splitting stuff is supposedly only useful for VOIP, and my VOIP apps like Skype work just great without it, so it’s not really that big a deal. The packet prioritization and upstream traffic shaping/buffering stuff still work fine with Live and everything else, though.

In the three years I’ve had this old Linksys wireless router, I’ve had to reset it only once. Time Warner did some rerouting or something technical to the network the required a router reset.

Given that the WRT54GS doesn’t work for WoW, any other suggestions? I guess I could get a WRT54G, but I’m a little ticked at Linksys at the moment.

The main feature I want is port forwarding.