[Looking for Hardware] Small form factor x86 VPN-Appliance

Hi,

I'm looking for a nice little piece of hardware (around 20x20x4 cm) to be used as Linux-based OpenVPN-Appliance. Browsing the intertubes I can find a whole lot of small form factor x86 hardware (so far mostly Shuttle XPC, Zotac zbox, Gigabyte Brix...), but none of those has been able to tick all the boxes. Since they're often marketed as Media PCs it's mostly the missing second LAN port in combination with a lot of other connectors that I have no use for (overabundance of USB, Serial ports, Card Reader etc.).


What the thingy needs:

  • x86_64-based. No ARM (Raspberry etc.)
  • High(-ish) Single-Core performance (since OpenVPN is single-threaded)
  • CPU with AES-Instructions (= no Atom and only some Celerons)
  • 2x GbE LAN (If possible not Realtek)
  • Low RAM requirements, 2 GB is enough
  • Same for storage - 32GB SSD does it


Nice-to-haves:

  • Fanless
  • Somewhat rugged build
  • VGA connector


Recommendations much appreciated :)
4 answers Last reply
More about hardware small form factor x86 vpn appliance
  1. I built this hackintosh about a year ago as a project. It is a little bigger than what you are looking for, but not too much bigger. The pico psu really saves a lot of room. It is not fanless, but the Noctua cooler is virtually silent.

    http://snazzylabs.com/article/skylake-mac-mini-hackintosh/
  2. Luno said:
    Hi,

    I'm looking for a nice little piece of hardware (around 20x20x4 cm) to be used as Linux-based OpenVPN-Appliance. Browsing the intertubes I can find a whole lot of small form factor x86 hardware (so far mostly Shuttle XPC, Zotac zbox, Gigabyte Brix...), but none of those has been able to tick all the boxes. Since they're often marketed as Media PCs it's mostly the missing second LAN port in combination with a lot of other connectors that I have no use for (overabundance of USB, Serial ports, Card Reader etc.).


    What the thingy needs:

    • x86_64-based. No ARM (Raspberry etc.)
    • High(-ish) Single-Core performance (since OpenVPN is single-threaded)
    • CPU with AES-Instructions (= no Atom and only some Celerons)
    • 2x GbE LAN (If possible not Realtek)
    • Low RAM requirements, 2 GB is enough
    • Same for storage - 32GB SSD does it


    Nice-to-haves:

    • Fanless
    • Somewhat rugged build
    • VGA connector


    Recommendations much appreciated :)



    How about an intel nuc? There are editions out there that have 2 lan ports. Or you can just go on ebay/aliexpress and get a barebones unit there.
  3. PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant

    CPU: Intel - Pentium G4400 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($49.88 @ OutletPC)
    Motherboard: ASRock - H170M-ITX/DL Mini ITX LGA1151 Motherboard ($70.98 @ Newegg)
    Memory: Patriot - Signature Line 4GB (1 x 4GB) DDR4-2400 Memory ($27.00 @ Amazon)
    Storage: ADATA - Premier Pro SP600 32GB 2.5" Solid State Drive ($39.99 @ Amazon)
    Case: RAIJINTEK - Metis Plus (Black) Mini ITX Tower Case ($48.99 @ SuperBiiz)
    Power Supply: Corsair - CXM (2015) 450W 80+ Bronze Certified Semi-Modular ATX Power Supply ($26.99 @ Newegg)
    Total: $263.83
    Prices include shipping, taxes, and discounts when available
    Generated by PCPartPicker 2017-09-14 11:19 EDT-0400

    this is slightly larger than your desired footprint (25 cm x 19cm base), but has your duel gigabit, higher end dual core cpu (if you need AVX, you could put in an I3), a 32 GB SSD, 4 GB RAM (the smallest that they make in DDR-4), and a very reliable semi-modular power supply
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