Hardware Selection

The use of open source operating systems with untested hardware may create hardware/software conflicts. Hardware Tuning and Troubleshooting offers tips on resolving various issues.

Preventing hardware headaches

Use Official pfSense Hardware

We highly recommend using official hardware from the pfSense Store. Our hardware has been developed to assure the community that specific hardware platforms have been thoroughly tested and validated.

Search for the experiences of others

The experiences of others are a valuable source knowledge which can be found by researching pfSense and hardware compatibility online, especially on the pfSense Forum. Reports of failure should not necessarily be considered definitive because problems can arise from a number of issues other than hardware incompatibility.

If the hardware in question is from a major manufacturer, an internet search by make, model, and site:pfsense.org will search the pfSense.org website for relevant user experiences. Searching for the make, model, and pfSense will find user experiences on other websites or the mailing list archives. Repeating the same search with FreeBSD instead of pfSense may also turn up useful experiences.

Naming Conventions

Throughout this book we refer to the 64-bit hardware architecture as “amd64”, the architecture designation used by FreeBSD. Intel adopted the architecture created by AMD for x86-64, thus the name amd64 refers to all x86 64-bit CPUs.

The SG-1000 firewall is based on the armv6 architecture, but since the SG-1000 is currently the only ARM device compatible with pfSense, we will refer to SG-1000 by name rather than using a generic ARM type or architecture name.