Hope this has not been covered yet - the search function did not return any specific hits...
I just built a new pfSense setup in the lab using ESX 3.5U4 (QuadCore 2.8Ghz CPU, 8GB RAM). I setup a pfSense VM with 2GB RAM, 20GB HDD, and 3 network interfaces (WAN, DMZ, LAN). I also created three new CentOS 5.3 VMs and put each in the corresponding network. Although I was able to get everything working without any issues, I am having a serious network performance issue with the setup.
On my DMZ VM, I enabled apache and put a simple 200MB test file in /var/www/html. On my WAN VM, I am able to get the file via "wget" but the performance is very sporadic and slow. At the beginning of the transfer, wget starts around 20MB/sec then eventually slows down to 0, the back up to 5MB/sec, then down to zero, etc. It has a constant up-and-down transfer rate pattern.Some things I have tried
- Installed the OpenVM package
- Disabled NAT and configured the pfSense as a router (no effect on performance)
- Enabled/disabled any traffic shaping (no effect on performance)
- Modified my DMZ VM to temporarily live on the WAN network to prove VM networking performance was good (it was - I was able to get 110MB/sec from the DMZ VM)
- Verified CPU and RAM were well within acceptable ranges (no CPU spikes, not out of RAM, etc)
- Use both "Flexible" and "Enhanced" VM NICs
At this point, I am running out of ideas. Does pfSense require any specific NIC tuning to get adequate performance? What am I missing?