0

I am trying to find out what is the best router (and cheapest) that has the ability to do the following:

I want it set up a router connected to two 4 port switches that I can subnet. I want the router to be able to differentiate between the 2 subnets for DHCP purposes and I would like a fairly easy to use firewall configuration interface for a relative novice user.

I am trying to set up a networking lab for teaching about subnetting, VPNs, firewalls, etc and I want to use real hardware in the lab to do it without spending a lot of money. So I am not training CCNEs here but it's always better if you can do it with real hardware.

thanks

3
Contributors
8
Replies
11
Views
12 Years
Discussion Span
Last Post by w1r3sp33d
0

The two subnet requirement takes you right out of the low end dsl type router bracket. I would suggest you try to get a deal on a used cisco 1500 or 1600 series. They are at least well documented and common. While little Linksys and such dsl routers have a routing interface they don't support dhcp on those subnets. At least with the Cisco you'd have the real deal. Not really a firewall though. Cisco uses access lists for security on their routers or PIX for their firewall. PIX is also kind of a firewall/router and can do dhcp as well. The opportunities for learning what's actually happening behind the scenes with these products is far beyond what you can do with the dsl types.

0

I assume you want to run those as two separate networks? I don't know of a 1600 with two ethernet ports.

Ideally I would go with Cisco, two 2501's and a Catalyst 2900 switch. You would need a db60 to db60 crossover cable.

Less than ideally you could use a Cisco 2514 or a 2611 (or 2621) and get two ethernet ports on a single router for your two switches but that will be very limiting as far as explaining routing since the router will automatically know all attached routes.

0

I don't know of a 1600 with two ethernet ports.

Actually, I have one. I was figuring sub interfaces on the inside, because he's trying to keep on the cheap. But you're right the hardware you suggest would work well if he can swing all the pieces.

0

Just to clarify, you don't have a 1600 with two ethernet interfaces, you have a 1600 with a single physical interface and you are using a secondary ip address, correct?

For the purpose of training people who have never seen a router config, I think a 2514 is the best bang for the buck (approx 100$)

I think the separate physical interfaces would be much easier to explain to newbies.

0

Just to clarify, you don't have a 1600 with two ethernet interfaces, you have a 1600 with a single physical interface and you are using a secondary ip address, correct?

For the purpose of training people who have never seen a router config, I think a 2514 is the best bang for the buck (approx 100$)

I think the separate physical interfaces would be much easier to explain to newbies.

First - thanks for your ideas/knowledge. I have a 2621 with 2 ethernet ports - this would work for what I want to do but I need to set up a few of these labs and it is simply too expensive. The 2514 sounds like it would be good as well but it isn't it old (as in unsupported)?

How about this idea - 2 SOHO routers connected together by their uplink cables and either built in switches or external switches? I was thinking that the biggest problem I have is a single router that supports DHCP for 2 subnets and (as someone mentioned) actually acts is if it doesn't know about the other subnet. Has anyone tried to hook two of these together?

I still need some advanced configuration capability (firewall mainly) but I think I could get that and get 2 of these for less than 1 cisco router.

Am I on the right track?

thanks

0

Hi Bob,

Yeah I would like to update my lab with 26xx's but it is still too expensive, I may add one or two over the next year.

You are right the 2500's are end-of-life and end-of-sale, there is still good code, ram, and cables EVERYWHERE for them, you just can't call TAC. A few benefits of 2514's are: they can do multiple dhcp scopes per router, you can build a basic pod with one router and two switches, and you can network between the pod's for complex labs.

With a bunch of Linksys or Netgear routers you are going to have some struggles figuring out static configurations, NAT/PAT, you probably won't be able to see the "firewall" or run any debugging on the boxes. This is aside from the lack of SNMP support on most SoHo devices.

I guess the question I didn't ask originally was this: what do you intend to teach?

If you want your students to learn networking, my say go with the Cisco.

If you want your students to know how to install SoHo routers in their houses, go get SoHo routers

Train like you fight!

0

Hi Bob,

Yeah I would like to update my lab with 26xx's but it is still too expensive, I may add one or two over the next year.

You are right the 2500's are end-of-life and end-of-sale, there is still good code, ram, and cables EVERYWHERE for them, you just can't call TAC. A few benefits of 2514's are: they can do multiple dhcp scopes per router, you can build a basic pod with one router and two switches, and you can network between the pod's for complex labs.

With a bunch of Linksys or Netgear routers you are going to have some struggles figuring out static configurations, NAT/PAT, you probably won't be able to see the "firewall" or run any debugging on the boxes. This is aside from the lack of SNMP support on most SoHo devices.

I guess the question I didn't ask originally was this: what do you intend to teach?

If you want your students to learn networking, my say go with the Cisco.

If you want your students to know how to install SoHo routers in their houses, go get SoHo routers

Train like you fight!

You ask a really good question... the students in this course are quite diverse, and they may be used for more advanced networking courses.

My "going in" goals are to demonstrate static vs dynamic routing, subnetting in practice and firewall packet filtering. So I need some basic tools to configure these functions - the advantage of the netgear/linksys crowd is an easy to use GUI. But I was looking at some other routers like Asante's that seem to have more full featured functionality at about 1/3 to 1/2 the cost of Cisco. (and 2-3 times the netgear/linksys)

I would like to be able to support other features for an advanced class like RIP and OSPF comparisons using packet captures to show how they differ in the case of a failure for instance.

But the basic, larger group need is the basic one I mentioned.

Thanks for making me think about this in greater detail...

0

In that case a mixture might do well to illustrate the great differences between devices.

You could add one 2514 to your 2621 for showing the advanced capabilities of a Cisco network, and use the SoHo devices to give people basic hands on.

I would design my courseware with three criteria:
1) What do students need to know (in the book)
2) What do students need to see (demonstate from instructor pod)
3) What do students need to do (their hands on labs)

Then I would know:
what I am going to teach in each class (how long is each lesson?)
what demonstrations I need to do during that class (instructor gear requirements)
what labs they will need to do as their lab (student gear requirements)

Once you have your class ready you just need to measure up what features each pod needs, and that will become your shopping list.

This topic has been dead for over six months. Start a new discussion instead.
Have something to contribute to this discussion? Please be thoughtful, detailed and courteous, and be sure to adhere to our posting rules.