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I've been tasked with building out a firewall / VPN device that needs to support up to 100 simultaneous VPN connections as well as light routing (mostly custom NAT mappings). This will be fronting a 50M internet connection leading to 5 servers running a total of 40 virtual machines. The majority of the traffic will be RDP sessions to virtual machines and relatively light http traffic. The VPN sessions will likely be long-lived, but lightly used. My plan is to use pfsense + OpenVPN unless anyone else has a strong recommendation toward another distribution. Traffic currently peaks at about 20Mbps, with the 95% being 10Mbps.

Basically, what I'm looking for is how large of server do I need to hold that many simultaneous VPN connections open without seeing a performance impact. We currently have a Xeon 5504 quad-core server with 12G of RAM that I'd like to use if possible.

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FYI: Your quad-xeon with 12G RAM would be able to support well over 100 VPN connections, and much more than 50M of internet traffic. It should be able to handle gigabit levels of traffic. –  Goyuix Feb 14 '12 at 16:12
    
Not gigabits, no. At that volume, the number of connections becomes a factor - and you simply cannot sustain infinite connections with a single system. ~100K is about the practical limit. –  adaptr Feb 15 '12 at 14:31
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3 Answers

Urgh. You can easily run 250+ VPN tunnels simultaneously on a Celeron with 512MB memory.

That's what a Cisco ASA 5510 has ;)

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That hardware is fine. Way, WAY more than you actually need for that, but if that's what you have and want to use, you're good.

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You waste money. I would have gotten Microtik 1100x2 andthe 2gb memory upgrade and be fine with it ;) Slap firmware on it, keep it updated, happy life.

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