How slow is your Smoothwall? UTM or own hardware?
I was wondering how many people use Smoothwall on their own hardware vs. how many use Smoothwall on a UTM?
Basically since April this year we have been having performance issues with our Smoothwall box causing it to either to drop the Web proxy service or cause web pages to take up to 2 minutes to load a single page.
We currently run the Smoothwall box on our own hardware which is a dual quad core Xeon running at 2.33MHz (Intel L5410) 8GB of RAM, and dual 1TB Barracuda ES.2 SATA drives, along with 4 Intel(R) PRO/1000 Network cards (e1000e)
We only see these performance issues when Smoothwall reports in User Activity that there are over 500-600 users using Smoothwall. We are currently licenced for 1120 as we have roughly 1000 computers/laptops/tablets plus we allow some use of BYOD. Does anyone have Smoothwall running with this amount of users and if so what do you run it on and do you have any problems.
I have being using Putty to run Top to see what might be causing these issues and this is what I find. Dansguardian3 runs at between 500-700% and datastore runs at 100% all other processes jump up and down never running above 100%. The memory usage is very small but then I guess this is because Smoothwall is only 32bit and can never currently go over 4GB anyway.
I have had a number of support calls open with Smoothwall since April and mainly waiting for the new database update in the Summer which was going to help with these load issues but unfortunately it has not. The latest news is there are no software problems and it is down to our hardware being not man enough to cope with the load. Ok fair enough I thought there are three ways we can go with. One buy the Smoothwall UTM3000, two buy are own better specification server, three look at other products.
Please donít get me wrong I like the Smoothwall software what it does and when it works it works well in terms of functionality but we have had Smoothwall for 3 years now and although all these new updates come out bring new features it seems to need ever increasing resources. We first had the Smoothwall running on a Intel Core 2 Duo similar specs to UTM1000 which ran well for a year but then upgraded due to slow downs and now less than a year later we are looking at a massive upgrade again.
The UTM3000 sounds like a nice box albeit rather expensive at £5000 to buy but should Smoothwall really need such high specifications to run smoothly (pardon the pun) we currently have 8 virtual servers running on a server of this spec going from heavy use SQL servers to heavy use file stores and web servers it seems crazy. I donít think we would buy the UTM either way because last week we were quoted £3000 for a Dell PowerEdge R620 running 16GB of RAM and Dual Xeon E5-2640 processors with all the bells and whistles including a 3 years NBD warranty.
Please can anyone offer any advice to the situation we are in? Having just paid out over £3000 for our annual Smoothwall costs I canít see us getting another £5000 to pay for a hardware upgrade.