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Features

The router's admin GUI is different from the 9850's, so I've put some screenshots into the gallery. You can get a little idea of what you're in for from the Status page in Figure 5, which is the first thing you see when logging in.

ESR9855G status page
Figure 5: ESR9855G status page

Here's a summary of the 9855G's feature set:

Routing

  • Static and Dynamic IP, PPPoE and PPTP WAN connections with MTU adjust
  • Multicast support
  • Switchable NAT / Router mode
  • RIP v1, v2, v2 multicast and static routing
  • DHCP server with IP reservation
  • Ubicom StreamEngine uplink automatic QoS w/ manual rule settting
  • UPnP enable
  • WAN port link rate control
  • Syslog support
  • DynDNS dynamic DNS
  • Status for Wireless clients, Internet sessions, open firewall ports, routes, WISH sessions
  • LAN, WAN, Wireless statistics

Firewall

  • Single port forwarding w/ scheduling and separate public / private ports
  • Triggered port range forwarding w/ scheduling
  • Port range filtering w/ scheduling
  • WAN ping blocking
  • Inbound / outbound service control w/ scheduling
  • URL / domain web filtering
  • DMZ host
  • SPI disable
  • UDP / TCP endpoing filtering
  • NAT port preservation and Anti-spoof check
  • Application Level Gateways (ALG) for PPTP, IPSec,RTSP,MSN Messenger, FTP, NetMeeting, SIP, WoL, MMS
  • Inbound IP filters

Wireless

  • Up to four SSIDs, each with separate wireless security and traffic priority
  • WDS bridging and repeating
  • WEP and Personal / Enterprise WPA / WPA2 wireless security
  • Wi-Fi Protected setup (PIN and pushbutton methods)
  • Wireless Modes: B only, G only, N only, B+G and B+G+N (default)
  • Wireless MAC address filtering
  • Client-to-client isolation
  • WISH wireless auto-QoS
  • Tranmit power control (100, 90, 75, 50, 25, 10%)
  • Transmit data rate
  • Connection control per SSID: WAN, Wireless-Wireless, Wireless-LAN

Missing

  • Scheduled wireless enable / disable
  • HTTPS administration

Although you gain Ubicom's automatic QoS, you lose the ability to set up and downstream bandwidth limits. So you either need to trust StreamEngine to control bandwidth hogs or try to add manual rules. StreamEngine primarily controls uplink bandwidth, but can have some effect on downstream by delaying TCP ACKs.

Of course, that doesn't help for UDP traffic and, again, you can't set specific bandwidth limits. Still, Ubicom's technology is pretty smart about identifying real-time traffic and generally does a good job of prioritizing the right stuff.

In other Ubicom-based routers, when you disable StreamEngine it is totally disengaged. But, EnGenius has chosen to leave it semi-engaged. The uplink speed setting is always in effect, with a maximum setting of 100000 kbps (Figure 6).

ESR9855G StreamEnging settings
Figure 6: ESR9855G StreamEnging settings

Frequent admin setting fiddlers will be pleased to hear that reboots are under 10 seconds and many control changes don't require a reboot at all.

Routing Performance

I tested the ESR9855G with 1.0.08 2010-09-01 firmware for its routing tests. As noted above, Stream Engine and Auto uplink speed both had to be disabled and Manual Uplink speed set to 100,000 before I could gauge what the router was fully capable of.

Figure 7 shows the IxChariot tests with an interesting mix of results. Downlink throughput came in at 419 Mbps and uplink was limited to 93 Mbps. But when running simultaneous up and downlink tests, both up and downlink speed were held in the 90 Mbps range for a total of 188 Mbps.

Gamers and P2Pers will be happy to hear that Simultaneous Connections test maxed out at our 34925 test limit.

ESR9855G routing throughput summary
Figure 7: ESR9855G routing throughput summary

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