RVL200 WAN Bandwidth Drops 92% with Allow Policies Logging

Unanswered Question
Jun 10th, 2010

I subscribe to a High-Speed Cable Broadband Internet service (25 MB download 3MB Upload).  My Cable MODEM is a DOCSIS 3.0 Motorola SB6120. 

The WAN port of my RVL200 Router having firmware v1.1.12.1 is connected to SB6120 MODEM. 

From a PC connected to a RVL200 LAN port, when I test the speed of my internet connection using my service provider’s web tool or using 'speedtest.net', I get a solid 25-27 MB download and 3 MB upload.  I've tested this over multiple days and times, always with the same results.

With this configuration as a starting point, if I enable logging of 'Allow Policies' under 'General Log' on the 'System Log' setup page, both my internet download and upload speeds dramatically drop to 2 MB.  Disabling this feature restores the internet connection speed.  It makes no difference whether I use a Syslog server or not.

It’s hard to believe that the RVL200 hardware so underpowered that it causes the WAN performance to be cut by 92% as it logs allow policies.

Is there a bug in the firmware that might be responsible for this?  If this is normal behavior for this RVL200, an advisory should be shown in the routers setup help and manuals.

Regards,

Tom

I have this problem too.
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mpyhala Thu, 07/01/2010 - 11:09

Hi Tom,

Logging will make the performance drop on any device as it puts an additional load on the processor. The processors in the Small Business routers are powerful enough to do the job they were designed for while keeping them affordable enough for the target market. Logging is generally used as a debugging feature and is not normally used 24/7.

thomas.t.wilson Thu, 07/01/2010 - 18:29

mpyhala wrote:


Logging is generally used as a debugging feature and is not normally used 24/7.

I agree that many in the market segment purchasing this product will generally never log allowed policies and/or periodically review them.

However, all devices are susceptible to exploit.  If this device was inside my DMZ, my risk exposure to and therefore my desire to log would be greatly diminished.

Without logging, one would never know if their firewall had been breached and has enabled someone to access their network.

Putting this aside, if we accept your premise, it’s still un-acceptable for the throughput to drop this much while logging allowed policies.

Let’s assume that we only to use allowed policy logging to debug/verify our configuration settings (changes made either during the initial setup or after deployment). 

It would be reasonable and realistic to log for a period of time that ranges from a few minutes to a couple of days. 

While doing this, the business would experience a significant reduction in the throughput of their internet connection (92% drop in my case).  Depending on the nature of the business, this may cause significant problems for them.  

mpyhala wrote:

Logging will make the performance drop on any device as it puts an additional load on the processor. The processors in the Small Business routers are powerful enough to do the job they were designed for while keeping them affordable enough for the target market.

I accept that logging will impact performance; however, it shouldn’t affect it by the magnitude that I am seeing.

I don't know if this is due to the lack of processing power inherent to this routers hardware design or inefficiencies in the programming of the firmware (I don’t know if previous firmware versions performed better).

In my opinion, if it’s due to a limitation of the router hardware, it shouldn’t be classified as a small business router and be marketed this price point.

Either way, I’ve solved my problems by replacing this router with a Netgear ProSafe FVS336G Dual WAN Gigabit SSL VPN Firewall Router (marketed to the same small business segment that the RVL200 is marketed too).

While my company runs Cisco enterprise class hardware throughout our company, I won't be using any more Linksys/Cisco products in the small business that I support.  Your competitor’s products provide greater value, performance and support for about the same cost.

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