Session and Bandwidth Limitation

General Router FAQ

Session and Bandwidth Limitation


Source :


The Session and Bandwidth limitation features are useful where you are concerned that individual users on your network might make disproportionate use of your Internet connection, causing inconvenience for other users. These features restrict LAN clients idenified by their IP address. For this reason, it is important that the PCs always have the same IP address so that they always have the correct limitations applied. You can hard-code the PCs IP addresses or pre-set the DHCP allocations from the router (the latter being preferred).

Bandwidth Limitaton

You can limit the amount of Upstream and Downstream Bandwidth that any device on your network is allowed to use, based on their IP Address. Under the router’s ‘Limit Bandwidth’ enter the range of IP Addresses you wish to limit. If it for a single PC or device’s IP address, set the start and end IP the same. Rate is specified in Kilobits per second. For example, a ‘one Meg’ ADSL line is 1024 Kilobits so to prevent a user consuming more than half of that, set the RX (receive/download) limit to 512. TX is for transmission/upload limits. Vigor Bandwidth Limitation

Session Limitaton

A ‘Session’ is a single connection from one device to another across a network. For example; when you visit a website on the Internet your PC creates a single session between itself and the Web Server. When using NAT, your PC, the router and your onward ISP connectivity has to keep track of all of these sessions. A Vigor router, for example, might have room for up to 15000 simultaneous sessions – that’s a lot, equivalent to connecting to 15000 web servers, however if you or your users make use of Peer-to-Peer (P2P) If you are the only user of your Internet connection, you can use the connection for anything you like without inconveniencing anyone else, but on a shared network it can be a problem and as system manager you may wish to enforce user policy by restricting sessions.

To enable this feature for a paricular client (identified by its IP address), Under the ‘Bandwidth Management’ link select the Limit Session setup. Enable the function and define a Default maximum number of sessions per IP Address which will be applied to all devices on the LAN.


In addition you can define more specific limits for single and/or ranges of IP Address. Enter the Start IP and End IP of the computers you wish to limit, along with the maximum number of Sessions allowed. If the setup is just for one single IP Address set the Start IP and End IP the same.

Session Limitation
Figure 2 – Session Limitation Setup

NOTICE : This document is © SEG Communications and may not be distributed without specific written consent. Information and products subject to change at any time without notice. Check each model for specific feature support.

List of router or firewall distributions

This is a list of operating system distributions designed for use as the operating system of a machine acting as a router and/or firewall.

Name Status Type Cost Description
AGH Live Router Active Debianderivative Free Linux distribution for experimental routing. It consists of XORP control plane software and Click Modular Router module, which serves as a forwarding plane. Applications are already integrated and the system is ready-to-use. The system is distributed as a live ISO image and supports additional Click packages.[1]
Alpine Linux Active Linux distribution Free Linux distribution running from a RAM drive. Its original target was small appliances like routers, VPN gateways, or embedded x86devices. However, it supports hosting other Linux guest OSes under VServer control, making it an attractive hosting solution as well. Uses Busybox and uClibc.
BSD Router Project Active FreeBSDderivative Free Router distribution that uses Quagga and Bird.
Bifrost Network Project Active Linux distribution Free The goal of this project is to find out stability, performance, filter capabilities, administration, computer security, scalability and development possibilities of a Linux based streamlined router/firewall system. Recent distributions are being used as pure Internet routers, equipped with 1 GB or more of internal memory.
ClarkConnect Inactive Linux distribution Free but paid support Firewall and Internet server distribution. Now known as ClearOS.[2]
ClearOS Active Red Hat Enterprise Linuxderivative Free or paid registration Router and firewall for SMBs with network, gateway and server modules accessed through WebConfig. A paid registration for extra online services is available, but not necessary for operation of the product.
Devil-Linux Active Linux distribution Free Firewall/router/server distribution running from CD.
DD-WRT Active Linux distribution Free or paid registration for x86 Embedded Linux firmware distribution available on a variety of wireless routers.
Endian Firewall Active Linux distribution Free (PC) or hardware version UTM distribution with routing, firewall, anti-spam and anti-virus for web, FTP and e-mail, OpenVPN, IPsec, hotspot functionality, and captive portal (missing in community version). Endian Firewall Community (EFW) is a complete version for x86. The anti-virus for EFW is Sophos or ClamAV. The intrusion protection is Snort.[3]
EnGarde Secure Linux Inactive Linux distribution Free or paid Router/firewall and web-, email- and database server distribution.
Fli4l Active Linux Free Single floppy ISDN, DSL, and Ethernet router.
floppyfw Active Linux distribution Free Single floppy router with the Linux’s advanced firewall capabilities.
FREESCO Active Linux distribution Free Free replacement for proprietary routers supporting up to 10 network cards and up to 10 modems.
FreeWRT Active Linux distribution Free Router distribution.
Gibraltar Active Linux distribution Free (PC/CD-ROM) or hardware version Router/firewall distribution.
Global Technology Associates, Inc. Active FreeBSDderivative Free (limited functionality) or paid GB-OS firewall and UTM appliance.
Halon Security Active OpenBSDderivative Free or paid Enterprise-class OpenBSD distribution with OpenBGPDPF (firewall)Juniper-style CLI configuration, web interface, and a CF/USB flash optimized read-only file system.
IPCop Active Linux distribution Free Router/firewall distribution.
IPFire Active Linux distribution Free Router/firewall distribution.
LEAF Project Active Linux distribution Free Linux Embedded Appliance Framework; a customizable embedded Linux network appliance used as an Internet gateway, router, firewall, and wireless access point.
Linux Router Project Inactive  ?  ? Router distribution (defunct as of 2003).
Mikrotik RouterOS Active Linux based Demo (full functionality for 24 hours) or paid Linux-based operating system with MLPLS, BGP, OSPF, firewalling, traffic control, VPN, IPsec. Free version requires you to sign-up for an account on their website.
m0n0wall Active FreeBSDderivative Free Small web-administrative router/firewall/VPN (ipsec/pptp only; no openVPN) distribution.
OpenWrt Active Linux Free Modular embedded distribution for ARM, MIPS, PPC and x86 devices.
Openwall Active Linux Free GNU/*/Linux (or Owl for short) is a small security-enhanced Linux distribution for servers, appliances, and virtual appliances.
pfSense Active FreeBSDderivative Free (complete) Customized distribution tailored for use as a firewall, router, DHCP server, gateway, OpenVPN, IPsec, proxy and anti-virus (Snort).
Sentry Firewall Inactive  ? Free A firewall, server or intrusion detection system distribution.
SmartRouter Active Linux distribution Free SmartRouter Project is a router/firewall distribution based on BrazilFW.
Simplewall Active Linux Distribution Free Firewall/UTM distribution with a web interface
SME Server Active CentOSderivative Free Router/firewall[citation needed] and web-, file-, email- and database server distribution based on CentOS.
Smoothwall Active Linux Distribution Free or paid Router/firewall distribution with a web interface and light terminal.
SonicWALL Active  ? Paid Router/firewall and UTM.
Sphirewall Active Linux Free Direct hook into Linux kernel packet stream, LDAP and user based authentication, user quotas, QOS, advanced analytics,intrusion detection system, CLI and web management utilities. Also available in a Debian based Linux distribution.
Threenix Active Linux distribution Free or paid Enterprise-class router, firewall, VPN, intrusion protection, e-mail security and web security with a powerful CLI for simple and central administration.
Tomato Firmware  ?  ? Free Free HyperWRT-based, Linux core firmware distribution for several wireless routers, most notably the Linksys WRT54G.
Trustix Defunct (Late 2007) Linux distribution Free or paid Router/firewall distribution with SSH and GCC included if desired.
Untangle Active Debianderivative Free with paid addons GPLv2 firewall and router that runs 13 paid and 13 free open source applications including spam blocker, virus blocker, web filter, OpenVPN, IPsec, protocol control and more.
Vyatta Active Linux distribution Free or paid Enterprise-class router, firewall, VPN, intrusion protection and more delivered as a complete network operating system that runs on x86 hardware or in XenServerVMware or Hyper-V to provide vFirewall, vRouter network virtualization functionality.
Zeroshell Active Linux distribution Free (contribution required for some graphing functions) Web-administrative router/firewall live CD with QoS features. It is also able to act as a Wi-Fi access point with advanced features such as the multiple SSID and 802.1x RADIUS authentication. Zeroshell supports VLAN trunking (802.1q), bridging, WAN load balancing, and fail-over features.
Zentyal(formely eBox Platform) Active Ubuntuderivative Free with paid services available Zentyal is an open-source router/firewall and small business server.



Free software
Commercial software
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List of router or firewall distributions

Source :

How to build a router based on Linux

By Graham Morrison from PC Plus Issue 272  December 27th 2012

How to build a router based on Linux
Use that old machine gathering dust to improve your home network

The latest, most expensive routers include so many facilities you’d be forgiven for thinking they’re more like PCs than tools for networking. This thought should lead you to wonder if you can use a regular PC to do the same thing. The answer, thanks to Linux, is that you can – and it’s very easy.

There are many different Linux distributions designed specifically to turn your machine into a router or a gateway, complete with any number of enhancements.

Our favourite is called ClearOS. It’s a fantastic choice of router for your network because it’s relatively painless to configure, but it’s also extendible, taking it far beyond even the most ambitious devices from manufacturers like Netgear.

You could use it to host your cloud documents, complete with editing, host and access your email, either through a web interface or server, as well as a powerful firewall and intrusion detection.

ClearOS is unlike most Linux distributions because it offers both a free edition and a commercial edition that you have to pay for. Because some people do pay for it, ClearOS has one of the better user interfaces, and most of its facilities can be installed and configured through a web app.

It’s also easy to install, and has a great support network. This is important, because all your network’s data is going to go through the distribution, and you need to be able to trust both the integrity of the packages and services its running, and the source of those packages and the distribution itself.

Fortunately, ClearOS’s heritage couldn’t be any better, since it’s based on the billion dollar Red Hat enterprise.



Clear OS


ClearOS uses Red Hat’s graphical installer and asks you only a few questions. Boot your machine with the ClearOS DVD in the drive (a USB option is also available), and choose the first option from the boot menu: ‘Install or upgrade an existing system’.

The graphical installer will appear after a few moments and you’ll have to answer the usual questions about language and keyboard layout. After these are out of the way, choose ‘Basic storage device’ as your installation medium and step through the regular drive and partition options. The next few questions deal with the network and where you’re located, before asking how you’d like to allocate space on your drives.

The default values will choose a drive and create an installation automatically, but be warned, this will remove all data from the drive it chooses.

The following two questions will confirm your choices before the installer goes off and does some installing. When this has finished, you get the chance to reboot into your new installation and removing the DVD would be advisable.





When your machine has booted, the first thing you’ll notice is the lack of a desktop. In fact, the only thing you should see is a screen telling you the IP address of your machine and where to get further information. This is because, like any modern router, ClearOS is intended to be configured through a web browser.

After you’ve made a note of its IP address, you can disconnect any screen, keyboard and mouse and hide the machine away under the floorboards if you like. As long as it’s connected to the network, you’ll be able to change the settings.

Go to a browser on a machine on the same network and type in this IP address, using both the ‘https’ prefix and the port ’81’. For our network, for example, we typed in

The page that appears asks you to log in, and you’ll need to enter a username of ‘root’ followed by the password requested by the installer. You’ll then be presented with the first page of the ClearOS startup wizard.

Click ‘Next’ and you’ll be asked which network mode you want to configure. Which you choose will depend on how you want to use your new router.

The best option here is Gateway Mode, but this won’t appear unless you have two network adaptors installed – one connected to the internet and the other to your LAN. If you’d rather experiment with ClearOS as a server, choose one of the two other options.

After selecting Gateway Mode, you need to tell the wizard which adaptor is which. The installer makes a pretty good guess at this, marking one adaptor as External and the other as LAN, but you can change the assignment if it’s wrong using the ‘Edit’ button.

The next question asks for a DNS, and we’d recommend entering the IP address of either your ISP, Google ( or OpenDNS ( After this, make sure the free community edition is selected and click ‘Next’ to download and install any critical updates.



market place


One of the best things about ClearOS is a package manager it calls the Marketplace, and the next step of the installation is to create an account to access this. You’ll be asked for an email address, and be instructed to register your system with your new credentials.

You’ll now be asked a couple of questions about domain names for your connection. If this is a home connection, you might not have one. We’d recommend using a free dynamic DNS service to get yourself one. Otherwise, you can always use a made-up name or the default values as a temporary fix.

We can now start installing applications. To start with, we’d recommend selecting the Windows file server, the bandwidth manager, port forwarding and the FTP server, but you can always come back at a later time and install more applications.

After making your selection, click on the ‘Download and install’ button. This will automatically grab and install all the packages you’ve selected. A few minutes later, depending on the speed of your connection, you’ll be presented with the ClearOS dashboard and you’ll be able to start using your new gateway.





A gateway with a firewall acts as a permissive barrier between two networks. In our case, that’s between the internet and your local network. It’s a necessary precaution because the internet is saturated with systems that constantly bombard every connection with random requests directed at ports with known vulnerabilities. Most of these vulnerabilities are found on non-updated versions of Windows, but they can also be found within almost any network-facing service, such as a web server or file server.

Within ClearOS, the firewall can be configured by clicking on the ‘Network’ menu on the left or top of the dashboard, followed by ‘Incoming Firewall’. By default, there should already be a single defined rule called webconfig. This allows port 81 on the oncoming connection, which is the port you need to access the ClearOS web interface.

This rule means you can configure your gateway from the internet, and if you don’t want this facility, click on ‘disable’ for the rule. To add your own rule, click ‘Add’. You don’t need to memorise most port numbers because the Add interface includes a list of the most common services. Select ‘SSH’, for example, and then click on ‘Add’ again. The rule list will now include SSH running on port 22, which is its default port.

If you need to add custom ports for your own services (or games) this can be done from the same interface.

ClearOS does run an SSH server, which is all you need if you want command-line access, but you may also want command line access to another machine in your network. To do this, you’ll need to use port forwarding. This takes an incoming connection on one port – 22 in the case of SSH – and maps this to a different port on either a local machine, or another machine within your LAN.

Click on ‘Port forwarding’ then ‘Add’. You’ll be able to select a standard service in the same way you could for the firewall, but you’ll also need to add a local IP address. This will be the destination for the port. You can forward custom ports, a range of ports and choose between UDP and TCP protocols by using the other options on the page.

Setting QoS




The other feature you only find in advanced routers is the ability to limit connection bandwidth going through your router depending on what they’re doing. This is often known as QoS, or Quality of Service, because it’s often used to make sure time-sensitive data isn’t affected by a torrent download, for example. Time-sensitive data could be streaming video or VoIP, where getting packets to the client is important. File downloads aren’t normally affected by some delay.

When you select ‘Bandwidth manager’, you have two choices. The first of these deals with bandwidth limiting on an interface, while the second can be used to limit bandwidth by service. The first is useful if you have several subnets, such as a wireless host running on your gateway. You can use it to either restrict data coming into and out of this network, or restrict the other interfaces, so you can ensure there’s always a decent amount of bandwidth.

The Basic Rules table is the most useful for the majority of networks, because it allows you to promote those first-class services while still allowing people to download large files. Click on ‘Add’ and you’ll get the option to choose a service (like SIP or FTP), and specify whether you want the bandwidth limited or reserved, in which direction and at what rate.

To ensure SPI always gets 1Mbps, for example, choose ’Reserve’, ‘SIP’, ’Flowing to the network’ and set a rate of 1,000 (the rate is set in Kbps). If you have local users saturating your upstream bandwidth, change ’Flowing to the network’ to ‘Flowing from the network’. ClearOS will transparently limit the packets going through the network to ensure the services you depend upon will have the lion’s share of your bandwidth.

And unlike some ISPs we could mention, you’re in control of whether that’s BitTorrent or HTTP, which is the best thing about running your own gateway.


Source :

How to build a router based on Linux

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