TNSR logo White

High-performance Software Router

Industry-leading price-performance, scalability, and solution flexibility for all edge, campus, data center and cloud router and site-to-site VPN needs.

Get to Know TNSR

Pronounced “tensor”, TNSR software is Netgate’s answer for businesses, governments, educational institutions and service providers looking for super-scale routing without the six-figure price tag.

Core Technology

TNSR software consists of a number of open source projects and Netgate value-add software.

Netgate’s productization and ongoing release progression converts the above into a turnkey software product, complete with Netgate-assured testing, release packaging, distribution and customer support.

From a pure technology perspective, we know customers often desire to understand what they are buying.

A simple software stack diagram - organized by functional software planes - describes the core of TNSR software technology:

TNSR-Software-Stack-and-Deployment iStock-508311852 1 coworks-at-desk

TNSR Technology

Control Plane Software

Free Range Routing

Free Range Routing (FRR) provides TNSR’s routing stack.


TNSR software uses strongSwan for IKE v1/IKE v2.


TNSR uses Kea to provide DHCP server functionality

Management Plane Software


Clixon provides TNSR software with a YANG-based configuration manager, with interactive CLI, RESTCONF interfaces, an embedded database and transaction support.

Command Line Interface

TNSR software uses a command line interface (CLI) for system installation, configuration and management.


TNSR software uses RESTCONF to enable web applications to access the configuration data, state data, RPC operations, and event notifications.


TNSR uses Net-SNMP to enable the SNMP protocol.


YANG is at the center of Clixon. Clixon has both CLI and RESTCONF front ends that manipulate YANG models. Changes to the model are reflected into various subsystem backends.

Data Plane Software

Data Plane Developer Kit

Data Plane Developer Kit (DPDK) provides Network Interface Card (NIC) and crypto Poll Mode Drivers (PMDs).

Vector Packet Processing's VPP propels TNSR software to speed gains of two orders of magnitude over traditional packet processing solutions. For a full explanation and deeper dive into Vector Packet Processing visit our VPP Simplified document here.

Netgate Value Add

Our roots are open source. We firmly believe it. We have based our entire company upon it. But it’s deeper than that for us. We are also heavy, and long-term, open source software contributors. And we always will be. And of course, beyond our open source contributions, we deliver business assurance value for our customers, who depend on Netgate every day to keep their networks securely connected to the digital world.

close up image of hands typing on external keyboard

Contribution to Open Source Software

There are many ways to help build a better world for all by thoughtfully participating in the open source software ecosystem. We are proud of our long heritage of giving back open source via the following ongoing contributions:

  • Significant financial sponsorship

  • Engineering and test resources

  • Upstreamed code to numerous open-source projects including Clixon, DPDK,, FreeBSD, Free Range Routing (FRR), Linux, pfSense, and strongSwan

  • Full-time employment or contractual relationships with numerous developers holding roles in FreeBSD, pfSense, Clixon, and VPP/ projects - whose contributions and responsibilities include development, administration, maintenance, release engineering, foundation board membership, etc.


TNSR software releases (through 22.06)


VRRP Maintainer


unique code contributors


leading VPP code contributor
(behind Cisco and Intel)


accepted code submissions (Feb 2019)

Customer Value Add

As powerful and capable as open source software is, it alone is not the answer for organizations whose depend upon secure networking connectivity for their livelihood. This is where Netgate’s productization of open source technology delivers extraordinary value with unbeatable economics.

  • Value-added software features not available in open source contributions

  • Fully-tested software releases - for turnkey appliances, public cloud instances, and commercial virtual machine use

  • Securely distributed for customer efficiency and confidence

  • Direct support options from seasoned engineers who know the software like the back of their hand

These value-add capabilities enable Netgate to provide the best possible secure networking experience for each and every customer - 24x7.

image of a smiling engineer standing in row of data servers