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LAN & WAN Reviews

Performance

Routing throughput running the latest v4.0.3.03-tm firmware and our router test process for the RV082 v3 and RV016 v3 has been gathered from the Router Charts and plunked into Table 3 for your comparison convenience.

All three products are essentially 100 Mbps wire-speed in each direction. The RV042, with its less powerful Cavium CN5010, can't reach the higher simultaneous throughput that the 082 and 016 can, however. This won't matter for most uses, since getting 100 Mbps of down and up bandwidth isn't that common, at least for U.S. users!

Model WAN-LAN LAN-WAN Simultaneous QuickVPN
(client-to-gateway, 3DES, MD5 encryption)
RV082 93 94 149 69
RV016 94 94 156 71
RV042 91 90 91 37*
Table 3: Cisco RV0XX v3 series throughput summary (All values Mbps)

Figure 6 shows the IxChariot composite throughput plot for the RV082 v3.

Cisco RV082 v3 Routing throughput summary

Figure 6: Cisco RV082 v3 Routing throughput summary

And Figure 7 for the RV016 v3.

Cisco RV016 v3 Routing throughput summary

Figure 7: Cisco RV016 v3 Routing throughput summary

You won't see Maximum Simultaneous Connection results in the Charts, however. Neither I nor Cisco could explain why I could only get a few dozen connections from my UDP based test tool before it stopped. This happened for both the RV082 and RV016 v3. The odd thing is that the RV042 v3, with earlier firmware, maxed out the test.

Table 3 also presents the results of more-painful-than-it-should-have-been client-to-gateway tests using Cisco's QuickVPN client. I should have re-read Doug's review, which warned of QuickVPN's quirks. Suffice it to say that if you're using QuickVPN with Win 7 or Vista, you better have Windows Firewall enabled and not muck with its default settings!

My previous encounters with QuickVPN for some reason didn't bring home the fact that it doesn't set up a normal IPsec connection. This Cisco Forum post explains why I could not reach the QuickVPN's client from a LAN client and why IxChariot's LAN-side endpoint couldn't return results at the end of a test.

So if all you need is for a remote client to be able to "dial in" and securely grab files from a server behind the RV0XX, QuickVPN will encrypt the traffic using 3DES and MD5. But don't expect that a QuickVPN connection is a full, bi-directional IPsec tunnel. It isn't.

Figure 8 shows that both the RV082 and RV016 v3 can support around 70 Mbps through a 3DES, MD5 encrypted QuickVPN connection.

RV082, RV016 v3 Quick VPN throughput

Figure 8: RV082, RV016 v3 Quick VPN throughput

Closing Thoughts

I can see why the RV0XXes have been a favorite of folks charged with keeping small businesses connected. They provide most of the features that small businesses need, i.e. bandwidth management, multiple WAN support and even LAN segmentation via their simplified VLAN features.

There has been some grumbling in the forums about the user interface changes that have come with transition from Intel to Cavium platforms. And, from my experience, it looks like the code base still needs to mature a bit.

But once Cisco gets it all sorted, I'm sure the v3 RV016 and RV082 will join the new RV042 as good footsoldiers in Cisco's expanding small business router line.

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