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Author Topic: A Firebrick In My Grotto  (Read 4444 times)

burakkucat

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A Firebrick In My Grotto
« on: March 25, 2014, 08:13:10 PM »

Rummaging around in the grotto, b*cat came across a small maroon-coloured box with an image of a dragon on its top.

The label on its underside reads:

WF1740 Firebrick 105 www.firebrick.co.uk
Watchfront Electronics  Made in UK  Andrews & Arnold


One day, I guess I will work out how to configure it to act as the PPP client and then test it conjunction with a Huawei HG612 on my ADSL2 line.

Although no longer a currently supplied model, refurbished ones can be obtained from the manufacturers at a price of 150.  :o
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burakkucat

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #1 on: March 25, 2014, 08:16:40 PM »

If anyone is interested, below is a photograph of the PCB (re-scaled to fit the 200 kB size limit).

So far, I have not had any success in tracking down information on the edge connector . . .

[Edit: A higher resolution image is available, upon request, which will allow all the chip markings to be read.]
« Last Edit: March 25, 2014, 09:24:40 PM by burakkucat »
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sheddyian

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #2 on: March 25, 2014, 10:56:58 PM »

If only everything had metal RJ45 ports with two status LEDs each!

Ian
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burakkucat

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #3 on: March 25, 2014, 11:13:13 PM »

If only everything had metal RJ45 ports with two status LEDs each!

I guess that is to be expected, what with A&A's involvement in the design and development.  :)
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sheddyian

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #4 on: March 25, 2014, 11:16:56 PM »

I mean, is it so much to ask for a network switch to indicate if a port is running at 100 or 1000?  Maybe even 10 for compatibility?  I just want to know.  It should be a minimum, not an added bonus.

Ian
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Ronski

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #5 on: March 26, 2014, 06:23:09 AM »

A lot of kit still doesn't come with gigabit ports, now that should be a minimum spec nowadays.
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kitz

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #6 on: March 26, 2014, 11:45:51 AM »

A lot of kit still doesn't come with gigabit ports, now that should be a minimum spec nowadays.

I totally agree and its been a major gripe of mine for years.
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kitz

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #7 on: March 26, 2014, 11:52:01 AM »

I mean, is it so much to ask for a network switch to indicate if a port is running at 100 or 1000?  Maybe even 10 for compatibility?  I just want to know.  It should be a minimum, not an added bonus.

Ian

A lot of network switches use just one led, but they are colour coded. 
Netgear for years (> 8?) have been using the green = gigE orange = 10/100
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guest

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #8 on: March 26, 2014, 05:58:55 PM »

If anyone is interested, below is a photograph of the PCB (re-scaled to fit the 200 kB size limit).

So far, I have not had any success in tracking down information on the edge connector . . .

[Edit: A higher resolution image is available, upon request, which will allow all the chip markings to be read.]

Have you tried emailing the good Reverend?

http://revk.www.me.uk/

Pretty sure he'll sort you out with the info if you ask nicely. Doing whatever you're planning using open source s/w will help a lot ;)

Oh and for the people on about multiple GigE ports - still pretty hard to do in a box that size, given the major cpu usage is analysing traffic/terminating tunnels.

LinITX has other options worth exploring but RevK knows his stuff and has been building his own custom routers since the days BT had 34Mbps Cisco gateways for ADSL. Actually probably just after that :)

Firebricks just work, can't give them higher praise than that.

HTH.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2014, 06:01:35 PM by rizla »
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kitz

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #9 on: March 26, 2014, 08:59:59 PM »

Oh and for the people on about multiple GigE ports - still pretty hard to do in a box that size, given the major cpu usage is analysing traffic/terminating tunnels.

Whilst I may have accepted that 10yrs ago and I did accept that reason until <2yrs ago...... but things have moved on, there are much better processors available and its no longer a valid excuse.
 
With FTTC speeds already nearing 100Mb, FTTH exceeding 100Mb and Virgin cable speeds far exceeding 100Mb, what use is a router with 10/100 ports?

We also have the laughable situation with many adsl/vdsl routers that have the ability to process wi-fi traffic at faster speeds than on the LAN. Any half decent PC for about the past 8yrs has been shipped with a GigE LAN card.

The HH4 (typical example of wifi faster than LAN) only lasted about 4 months before they brought out the HH5 which is practically the same aside from the fact it has a vdsl2 port and multiple GigE ports.
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guest

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #10 on: March 26, 2014, 09:15:46 PM »

Its not a router per se, its a firewall/VPN endpoint. Bit of a difference between that and consumer routers. The model in question is several years old and even now if you go shopping you won't get much change out of 500 for a decent firewall/endpoint capable of 200Mbps throughput.

Horses for courses.

There's also a world of difference between fibre, DOCSIS and vectoring but meh you know that anyway.
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #11 on: March 26, 2014, 10:36:38 PM »

Sounds like a nice thing to have.  The value, for me at least, would be the benefit of a true standalone firewall, bringing with it the possibility of a real, physical, DMZ.   

With such an enhancement to my own network I'd worry a little less about allowing visitors to use my internet connection.  I'm usually too polite to refuse, but I do worry.   

An extra firewall and DMZ would however address many of my concerns about whether their devices may contain malware that's about to trash my servers, or whether they may want to run applications and services that I would never trust myself, such as skype.    :)
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Ronski

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #12 on: March 26, 2014, 10:46:35 PM »

My Netgear router (DGND3700) has a guest wi-fi network I can set up (with password), apparently they can only see the internet, and nothing on my network - we have a couple of students staying so have set this up for them. Of course I have no idea how robust it is.
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sevenlayermuddle

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #13 on: March 26, 2014, 11:11:47 PM »

My Netgear router (DGND3700) has a guest wi-fi network I can set up (with password), apparently they can only see the internet, and nothing on my network - we have a couple of students staying so have set this up for them. Of course I have no idea how robust it is.

Sounds a lot better than nothing.  In fact, I may look into it more deeply  :)
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roseway

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Re: A Firebrick In My Grotto
« Reply #14 on: March 26, 2014, 11:14:58 PM »

Now you mention it, my Billion 7800DXL has guest WiFi networks too, and there's a tickbox "Clients isolation" which sounds as though it may do the same thing.
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