Havok, I'll try the full install idea. Also, considering the number of errors I've seen with rc4, I think I'll try an earlier version (probably rc2 since everyone seemed to be happy with that) and off a different mirror or the master server if I can, and preferably compressed in case our current router or something else along the way is mangling certain bytes in there (I've seen it before).
BTW, I don't know if it's in a FAQ, but one question I've had for a while: if pfSense runs on top of pf from OpenBSD, why did they put it on FreeBSD instead?
You should be able to do everything you want with one box running a full install. You can use the captive portal to keep the neighbors off your wireless, and could create a second network for your servers (VLANs and/or optional/extra interfaces). The firewall functions would be on this box as well.
I suspected I wrote that badly and now re-reading it and your response confirms it. So let me try this again:
Our current network is an ADSL connection (I think, I'm not actually 100% sure because we also have a T-1 coming in here for our voice lines) going through a cheap Netgear router (the source of a lots of crashes as well) and then via 100base-T to 4 separate access points. The leechers combined with the router's crashing all the time is what lead to this idea.
What I want to do is stick a box where the router is. The firewall can be configured with the webGUI from our non-tech front desk staff (which is why that feature is so important) so that a guest wanting access can be given a temporary password when they check in while stopping the riff-raff at the captive portal (usually truckers parked in our lot without us knowing or at the hotel next door which, unlike us, charges for their wireless--ours is included with the room).
What I'd like to do extra for myself and the other techie guy here is also put some basic services up, preferably on the same box: DHCP (obviously a requirement), caching DNS, some file service, NTP, etc.
The problem is that "same box" part since every single one of these firewall packages comes on a liveCD with the OS and everything. I just want to set up the OS and then drop pfSense or other firewall manager suite in as just another package running on top of a full-blown OS. Since nothing on this network needs high security (the motel computers are on a completely separate network, even down to using a DirecPC/HughesNet satellite to get to the outside world!), I wouldn't think this would be much of a problem. Except where can I get the software by itself to do that? That's my question.
P.S. That "file service" would be a BT client running niced all the way down and QoS'd at the firewall to the bottom setting. I may also consider an MTA if we need it...