Router for VPN

Discussion in 'IP Cameras' started by dryfly, Jun 9, 2019.

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  1. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    After reading the VPN primer thread, as well as other VPN threads, I'm thinking the Asus RT-AC68U might be the easiest way to set up remote access for my camera system. I like the idea of OpenVPN being built in to the router, and it looks fairly easy to set up. My requirements for a wireless router are pretty basic.

    Is this about the best bang for the buck based on my needs?
     
  2. mycatjest

    mycatjest Young grasshopper

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    asus routers are really great routers, the 68 and 86 have great reviews and are well supported on asus merlin firmware, on the smallnet builder forums

    unless you have very fast fibre / hardcore gaming needs the 68 will be be fine for VPN and is fast -66mbps throughput. the 86 is an absolute beast over double that, but you need very fast fibre to benefit for that

    i had an asus rt66 for 5 yrs, max of 22mbps vpn throughput, on a 80mbit line - VPN performance for remote dial in to my NVR , never an issue..

    ps i swapped over to ubquity unifi kit, after 5 happy and problem free years with asus kit - i only swapped over as i had started to buy the ubquity wifi kit , as i had specific wifi needs , that asus couldn't meet - v large property , so traded out the router to go 100% unifi
     
  3. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee IPCT Contributor

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    I use ASUS. Very simple to setup OpenVPN.
     
  4. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    Sounds like the 68 would be fine for me as I only have cable service at about 30mbps down and 2mbps up. No gaming, streaming etc. I'm assuming this is enough bandwidth to view my camera system.

    I'm pretty lame at networking but I'm guessing the OpenVPN setup, host and client, can't be too difficult. One thing I really like about the 68 is there seems to be a lot of documentation on the web about setting it up as this router has been around for a while.
     
  5. fenderman

    fenderman Staff Member

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    The 68, if buying new, is priced high compared to the 86 which is a bit more but a much newer router.
    Also if aesthetics matters the asus blue cave which uses intel components vs broadcom in the others is something to look at. Its priced about the same as the 68.
     
  6. Mike A.

    Mike A. Getting comfortable

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    My 68 runs great with FIOS gig fiber. I get +850-900-ish through to my faster desktop. The 86 gets you faster WiFi assuming that you have clients that are capable but not sure that it's going to get much if any faster WAN speeds. 86 does have some benefits if you're really loading it up. VPN is more limited by your client and carrier and most won't get anywhere near pushing either one.
     
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  7. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    Aesthetics are not important. I don't mind the small price difference but after looking at the 86 doubt I would ever need the features. Also, I'm finding reviews more negative on it vs, the 68 which seems to have become a very stable router for those using it. I would think however, ASUS would be phasing out the 68 and prices would be dropping. Not so.
     
  8. VorlonFrog

    VorlonFrog Known around here

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    The big difference between the RT-AC68U and the RT-AC86 is the RT-AC86 will perform better on OpenVPN by a large factor. It has built-in hardware encryption/decryption, whereas the older 68 does not.
     
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  9. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    Help me understand. Then how does the 68 encrypt/decrypt? Software? Seems like everything I've read about he 68 indicates it handles tunnel VPN great. Please understand I'm not questioning that the newer 86 is not the optimal choice, my lack of knowledge on this subject is making it difficult to understand and make a choice. thanks,
     
  10. Mike A.

    Mike A. Getting comfortable

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    Yes. The 68 uses it's main processor to do the encrypt/decrypt, the 86 has dedicated hardware in the processor to do it. That makes a big difference in overall throughput speed in a similar way to offloading to a graphics processor does. Like 3X-5X-ish faster.

    BUT you're mostly going to see the difference if you're using the VPN out-going to some VPN provider from your network. In-coming will be lower and using a phone over your LTE carrier with whatever real-world signal quality that you have will be lower still. All equal though the 86 should be quite a bit faster. Whether that's significant at a practical level as far as viewing your cams or not *shrug*. Lots of people using the 68 and are perfectly happy with it. The 86 is a better spec'ed router. Really just a question of whether the difference in cost is worth it to you. Buying a router today, I could argue it either way. The cost difference isn't much over the life of a router. But then if I found a great deal on a 68 I might just do that for the time being.
     
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  11. VorlonFrog

    VorlonFrog Known around here

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    I previously used a TM-AC1900 flashed to RT-AC68U with DD-WRT for many years as my main router. It ran OpenVPN perfectly well. But I only have 200 Mbit/sec internet service. Several months ago, I updated to the RT-AC86 and Merlin (Asus-WRT) firmware. Blue Iris performance through Open VPN improved somewhat. But if you've got fiber or near-Gbit/sec internet service, it would likely reveal a bigger difference. Fatter pipes, higher resolution cameras, encryption/decryption; I felt it was time to update my main router.

    Purchase decision comes down to one other thing: expense. The RT-AC68U can be had for about $50 to $80. The RT-AC86U is about $100 more. I typically keep a main router for three to five years, and felt it was time. I've been happy I switched. YMMV.
     
  12. VorlonFrog

    VorlonFrog Known around here

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    How does $49 for a TM-AC1900 refurb sound?
    Hack the BIOS and wipe out all the T-Mobile partitions/certificates.
    Then you flash DD-WRT or Merlin and you've got an RT-AC68U.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019
  13. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    I'm liking that deal! I've seen folks doing this hack and I thought it might be above my pay grade but I think I could pull it off. Thanks for the links.

    I never buy refurb stuff but is it really possible to get one in pretty good condition? Might find one on Ebay with pics and condition.

    As far as bandwidth, I live outside of town in an area where fiber optic options will probably never be available in my lifetime. Nowhere near Gbit speeds at this time. I don't need high bandwidth for anything I do. Again, I'm assuming my 30mbs down and 2 mbs up will work for my camera system?????
     
  14. VorlonFrog

    VorlonFrog Known around here

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    In my experience (and I've purchased and hacked several of these TM-AC1900s for friends and myself) every unit I've received has been almost like brand-new. I've seen reports of buyers getting dirty, dusty, scratched, broken units, but never experienced any of that myself. For the significant price savings, these are an excellent buy with low risk. They also are extremely flexible for use as wireless access points, wireless clients, and wireless bridges.
     
  15. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    Did you buy through Amazon? Any particular supplier?

    Edit: after checking Ebay I can get new ones, or new open box ones for about $60. some company is selling new ones already flashed for $65
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2019
  16. VorlonFrog

    VorlonFrog Known around here

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    That's a pretty darned good deal. It takes a little less than 30 minutes to hack one, if you're experienced. At that price, I'd be all over it.
     
  17. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    Yes, but I'm not experienced. I've been checking out some of the websites that give the details of the hack, and I gotta tell you it's a little intimidating. But on the other hand it works, or I brick it. What's the worst that can happen?? I've tore up a lot more expensive stuff.
     
  18. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee IPCT Contributor

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    Buy a good new Asus router use the Asus installed software. Why have the headaches and risks of hacking the router, for what to save a few bucks.
     
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  19. dryfly

    dryfly Getting the hang of it

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    In regards to the 68U or 86U is there any benefit to flashing AsusWRT-Merlin or DD-WRT firmware for use with OpenVPN? Or just use factory firmware with OpenVPN?
     
  20. SouthernYankee

    SouthernYankee IPCT Contributor

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    i use the standard asus software for openVPN. I have had no problems with it. I have used asus routers for more than 5 years.
    Keep it simple !
     
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