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Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors
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Intel Corp IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors

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  • 1. T H E TO L LY G R O U P No. 203141 November 2003 Intel Corp. Test Intel® IXP425/IXP420 Network Processors Summary Performance Analysis of 802.11 Broadband Routers and Access Points Premise: The market for small office/home office (SOHO) and Test Highlights small/medium business (SMB) is Intel IXP425-based Linksys WRV54G in most cases delivers more inundated with a range of broadband than four times the wired throughput of other broadband routers wireless gateway products at highly tested in unidirectional LAN-to-WAN TCP throughput tests competitive prices. These devices Intel IXP425-based Linksys WRV54G achieves from 41% to 55% are equipped with features that uti- greater throughput than the other devices tested in unidirectional lize the advantages of present-day WLAN-to-WAN test wireless technology and state- of-the-art network processor Intel IXP425-based Linksys WRV54G performs almost 21% capabilities. It is important for better than the Broadcom-based Linksys WRT54G router while consumers to know the performance delivering WEP-encrypted data in WLAN-to-WLAN testing characteristics of these SOHO Intel IXP420-based D-Link DWL 7000AP outperforms other APs routers/access points in order to tested in 128-bit WEP bidirectional WLAN-to-LAN TCP tests better understand these products’ value propositions and to aid in Unidirectional LAN-to-WAN Wired TCP making informed purchasing Throughput of Wireless Broadband Routers decisions. As reported by NetIQ Chariot I 100 ntel Corp. commissioned The Tolly Group to benchmark the 94.7 94.4 TCP throughput (Mbps) 80 performance of several commercial- ly available 802.11 wireless gate- ways (wireless broadband routers 60 and access points) that utilize the Intel IXP425 and the Intel IXP420 40 network processors, and compare 36.4 the performance of those devices 20 22.7 against other generally available 17.8 products based upon rival chipsets. 0 Cross-over Linksys Linksys D-Link DI774 Netgear Tolly Group engineers used the Cable WRV54G WRT54G FWAG114 industry-accepted NetIQ Chariot’s “throughput.scr” script to determine Intel®IXP425 Broadcom ARM9 Broadcom 4702 the aggregate throughput of the Broadband router tested devices under test. Throughput was Source: The Tolly Group, November 2003 Figure 1 © 2003 The Tolly Group Page 1
  • 2. The Tolly Group Intel Corp. IXP425/IXP420 802.11g Client Unidirectional WLAN-to-WAN TCP Throughput of Wireless Broadband Routers As reported by NetIQ Chariot 25 23.0 23.3 20 TCP throughput (Mbps) 15 16.6 16.5 15.7 15.8 14.7 14.9 10 5 0 No encryption 128-bit WEP 802.11g (Laptop PC client using Linksys WPC54G wireless card) Linksys WRV54G (Intel®IXP425) Linksys WRT54G (Broadcom) D-Link DI774 (ARM9) Netgear FWAG114 (Broadcom 4702) Source: The Tolly Group, November 2003 Figure 2 recorded in two different sce- 802.11g Client with WPA Unidirectional narios: (1) unidirectional WLAN-to-WAN TCP Throughput of WLAN- Wireless Broadband Routers to-WAN traffic, where the As reported by NetIQ Chariot Endpoint 1 (client) in the wire- 20 less network sends data to Endpoint 2 (client), which is TCP throughput (Mbps) 16.9 wired to the WAN port in the 15 15.8 tested device, and (2) bidirec- tional WLAN-to-WLAN traffic, 12.0 11.4 where the data flows in both 10 directions between Endpoint 1 and Endpoint 2 where both are 5 wireless clients. Engineers mea- sured throughput for devices supporting 802.11b, 802.11g and 0 mixed mode (802.11b/g) wireless Linksys Linksys D-Link DI774 Netgear standards. Extensive testing was WRV54G WRT54G FWAG114 conducted between September Intel®IXP425 Broadcom ARM9 Broadcom 4702 Intel®IXP425 Intel®IXP425 2003 and November 2003. Broadband router tested The test scenarios are indicative Source: The Tolly Group, November 2003 Figure 3 © 2003 The Tolly Group Page 2
  • 3. The Tolly Group Intel Corp. IXP425/IXP420 of those encountered by wire- Bidirectional WLAN-to- less laptop PC users surfing the WLAN (testing 802.11g Intel Corp. Web with a connection to a with no encryption, broadband wireless router con- 802.11g with 128-bit WEP, nected to a wired infrastructure. 802.11b/g with no encryp- IXP425/IXP420 Moreover, test scenarios also tion and 802.11b/g with Network show how wired PCs connected 128-bit WEP) Processors to the router do not hit any bottlenecks when utilizing For the baseline unidirectional TCP Web services. LAN-to-WAN TCP throughput Throughput test, the Linksys WRV54G Test results show that the (with the embedded Intel wireless gateways based upon Intel Corp. IXP425) delivered 94.4 Mbps IXP425 Network Processor the Intel IXP425 and IXP420, of throughput to a wired client Product Specifications* respectively, either outperform over a traditional 100-Mbps competitive products in Fast Ethernet link, more than Member of the IXP4XX network processor most scenarios, or provide five times the throughput of product line for enterprise, small-to-medium performance on par with other the Netgear FWAG114 and 2.5 enterprise (SME), residential and other devices. times the throughput of the networking applications Intel® XScale® RISC core at up to 533 D-Link DI774, the closest com- MHz provides headroom for customer- Results petitive device. (See Figure 1.) defined applications Broadband Router Integrated hardware acceleration of For the unidirectional 802.11g popular cryptography algorithms (SHA-1, Throughput WLAN-to-WAN TCP through- MD5, DES, 3DES, AES) for secure put test, results tracked almost applications On the broadband router side, identically between the baseline IPsec-enabled Network Processor Engine The Tolly Group tested four (NPE) to accelerate cryptography and performance test and the 128-bit products, starting with an Intel authentication algorithms WEP test. Here, again, the IXP425-based Linksys DSP software library on the Intel XScale Intel IXP425-based Linksys WRV54G. Other broadband core supports two to four voice channels WRV54G outperformed all and reduces system cost routers tested were: D-Link other products. In the 128-bit Two high-speed serial (HSS) ports for DI774 (using an ARM9 WEP scenario, the WRV54G VoIP SLIC/CODEC or T1/E1 chipset), a Linksys WRT54G delivered 23.3 Mbps of aggre- Two integrated 10/100 Base-T Ethernet (using an unknown Broadcom MACs with MII interface for design gate TCP throughput, which chipset) and a Netgear flexibility and cost-effective wire-speed represents anywhere from 41% FWAG114 (using a Broadcom performance to 56% greater throughput than BCM 4702 chipset). All four UTOPIA 2 interface with multiple the other devices tested. (See ADSL/G.SHDSL or VDSL support devices were subjected to three Figure 2.) It is also interesting 33/66-MHz PCI v2.2 host and option TCP throughput tests: to note that the similarity interface for glueless connection of up to between the baseline test results four devices Unidirectional LAN-to- and the 128-bit WEP results Low system power consumption (1.0 to WAN (baseline between 1.5 watt typical) two computers connected shows that the WEP encryption via a crossover cable) does not adversely impact For more information contact your Intel Unidirectional WLAN-to- bandwidth performance. sales representative: WAN (testing 802.11g with URL: http://intel.com/design/network/ Engineers also tested the products/npfamily/ixp425.htm no encryption, 802.11g devices in the unidirectional with 128-bit WEP, and 802.11g WLAN-to-WAN test *Vendor-supplied information not verified by 802.11g with WPA and a The Tolly Group scenario using the recently pre-shared key with TKIP) introduced Wi-Fi Protected © 2003 The Tolly Group Page 3
  • 4. The Tolly Group Intel Corp. IXP425/IXP420 802.11g Client Bidirectional WLAN-to-WLAN TCP Throughput of Broadband Routers As reported by NetIQ Chariot 10 9.7 9.4 9.1 8 8.5 TCP throughput (Mbps) 8.0 7.3 6.8 6 6.6 4 2 0 No encryption 128-bit WEP 802.11g (Laptop PC client with Linksys WPC54G interface) Linksys WRV54G (Intel®IXP425) Linksys WRT54G (Broadcom) D-Link DI 774 (ARM9) Netgear FWAG114 (Broadcom 4702) Source: The Tolly Group, November Figure 4 Access (WPA), a standards- Linksys WRT54G device while 3Com LAN AP8200, a Cisco based security mechanism that delivering WEP-encrypted Aironet 1220 (using an IBM eliminates most 802.11 security data. (See Figure 4.) For non- Power PC 405) and a Broadcom- issues. Maximum throughput encrypted throughput, the score based Linksys WAP54G. All for the Intel IXP425-based difference was about 29% for four devices were subjected to Linksys WRV54G was 16.9 these devices, with throughput a bidirectional 802.11b WLAN- Mbps, or about 7% higher of 9.4 Mbps and 7.3 Mbps to-LAN TCP throughput test. than the D-Link DI774. Both respectively. Even in the mixed Broadcom-based devices exhib- mode test (802.11b/g), the Here, the D-Link DWL 7000AP ited lower throughput values Linksys WRV54G offered any- with the Intel® IXP420 per- with the least value observed where from an 18% to 48% formed on par with the Cisco in the case of the Netgear performance gain over other Aironet 1200 series (1220) FWAG114; the Intel IXP-based devices tested. (See Figure 5.) access point in delivering the router delivered 48% greater 802.11b non-encrypted traffic to throughput. (See Figure 3.) Access Point an 802.11b Centrino client with Throughput rates of 5.1 Mbps and 5.3 Mbps In an 802.11g bidirectional respectively. In the case of 128- WLAN-to-WLAN test, the The Tolly Group tested four bit WEP-encrypted traffic, Intel Linksys WRV54G with the products, starting with an Intel IXP420-based DWL 7000AP Intel® IXP425 performed about IXP420-based D-Link DWL outperformed the others with a 18% better with a rate of 9.7 7000AP access point. Other data rate of 5.4 Mbps. However, Mbps than the Broadcom-based access points tested were: the performance observed for © 2003 The Tolly Group Page 4
  • 5. The Tolly Group Intel Corp. IXP425/IXP420 802.11b/g Mixed Mode Bidirectional WLAN-to-WLAN TCP Throughput of Broadband Routers As reported by NetIQ Chariot 5 4 3.9 4.0 TCP throughput (Mbps) 3 3.3 3.2 3.3 3.2 2.9 2.7 2 1 0 No encryption 128-bit WEP Mixed mode - 802.11b and 802.11g Linksys WRV54G (Intel®IXP425) Linksys WRT54G (Broadcom) D-Link DI 774 (ARM9) Netgear FWAG114 (Broadcom 4702) Source: The Tolly Group, November 2003 Figure 5 the D-Link device was not on TCP protocol. Under identical IXP425-based Linksys par with that of the Cisco test conditions with no influ- WRV54G. This is indicative device with the 802.11b access ence from any environmental of the bandwidth a wired through the Linksys WPC11 variables, among other compo- client would experience. This card. (See Figure 6.) nents (WLAN chipset and illustrated that there was no associated driver) the network performance degradation When the WPC11 client was processor has the greatest sourced from the Linksys used, the D-Link DWL 7000AP possibility of influencing the WRV54G router, whereas the delivered competitive 802.11b throughput performance of the rest of the devices under test throughput of 4.6 Mbps with no wireless gateways. in this category compromised encryption and 4.5 Mbps with the data transfer capability 128-bit WEP encryption, again The TCP throughput observed significantly. The Linksys proving there is no bandwidth for two laptops connected WRV54G in this scenario tax paid for using WEP encryp- through a crossover cable was outperformed the ARM9-based tion. Moreover the D-Link 94.7 Mbps for unidirectional D-Link DI774 by about 160%, DWL 7000AP is competitive traffic over a 100-Mbps Fast the Broadcom-based Linksys with the other devices tested. Ethernet link. Inserting the WRT54G by 316% and router in between these laptops Netgear FWAG114 by 430%. Analysis with a unidirectional LAN-to- Test results show that vendors WAN traffic configuration are implementing the same TCP throughput is a measure of yielded maximum TCP through- how fast the data moves idea in different ways, and this put of 94.4 Mbps for the Intel® is reflected with the Linksys between the clients using the © 2003 The Tolly Group Page 5
  • 6. The Tolly Group Intel Corp. IXP425/IXP420 802.11b Client Bidirectional WLAN-to-LAN TCP Throughput of Access Points As reported by NetIQ Chariot 6 5.3 5.4 5.1 5.2 4.8 4.9 4.9 4.9 4.7 4.6 4.6 TCP throughput (Mbps) 4 4.5 4.4 4.5 4.3 4.3 2 0 No encryption 128-bit WEP No encryption 128-bit WEP 802.11b-Centrino client 802.11b-WPC11 client 802.11b D-Link DWL7000AP (Intel®IXP420) Linksys WAP54G (Broadcom) 3Com LAN AP8200 (Unknown chipset) Cisco 1220 (IBM PowerPC) Source: The Tolly Group, November 2003 Figure 6 and Netgear routers with the with a TCP throughput of 16.6 least value observed in the Broadcom processor. Mbps – with encryption dis- case of the Netgear box, abled. One interesting observa- since the Intel IXP-based In the unidirectional WLAN- tion from these test results is router achieved 48% greater to-WAN throughput test, the that there is no throughput throughput. Because WPA is Linksys WRV54G with the degradation with 128-bit WEP a highly processor-intensive Intel network processor encryption – in fact a slight encryption technique, network IXP425 clearly was able to increase was observed. processors have a greater transfer more encrypted and Because WEP is a mature potential to facilitate higher unencrypted data at rates of encryption technique, it is an performance. 23.3 and 23 Mbps respectively. efficient way to encrypt data. This was 56% more throughput Test Configuration in both cases compared to the The Intel IXP425-based and Methodology Linksys WRT54G with the broadband router demonstrated Broadcom processor. (This sce- a performance edge even in For performance tests, The nario demonstrates the band- the WPA test. Maximum Tolly Group tested an Intel width available to a wireless throughput was observed with IXP425-based Linksys user connected to the Internet the Intel IXP-based device WRV54G broadband router. or other wide area service.) with a value of 16.9 Mbps, Other broadband routers The other Broadcom-based box about 7% higher than that of tested were: D-Link DI774 by Netgear performed slightly the D-Link box. Both Broadcom- (using an ARM9 chipset), a better, but trailed behind the based devices showed lesser Linksys WRT54G (using a ARM9-based D-Link gear throughput values with the Broadcom chipset) and a © 2003 The Tolly Group Page 6
  • 7. The Tolly Group Intel Corp. IXP425/IXP420 Netgear FWAG114 (using as the Chariot console that SP1. Tests also show there is a Broadcom BCM 4702 managed the performance no bandwidth tax paid for chipset). testing. using 128-bit WEP encryption, as the D-Link DWL7000AP On the access point side, In the bidirectional WLAN- actually increased performance The Tolly Group tested an to-WLAN TCP throughput test, by 6% when in WEP mode. Intel IXP420-based D-Link both laptop PCs connected to DWL 7000AP access point. the broadband router through All tests were conducted Other access points tested were: wireless sessions. Both the under identical test conditions 3Com LAN AP8200, a Cisco laptops had NetIQ’s Endpoint with no other radio interfer- Aironet 1220 (using an IBM software running, and a Dell ence. The firmware/device Power PC 405) and a Computer PC connected to driver software for each tested Broadcom-based Linksys the LAN side of the router device was updated to the WAP54G. During all tests, served as the Chariot console latest version available from firewall functionality in the that managed the performance the vendor’s Web site prior to devices under test was disabled. testing. testing. All devices were set to the maximum power output All results discussed in this In the bidirectional WLAN- mode, auto transmit rate with section are averages derived to-LAN TCP throughput test channel set to 1,6 or 11, from three iterations per test was conducted with one laptop RTS threshold set to the scenario. Results from each of PC wired to the LAN side of default value of 2346 and the three test iterations were the AP and the other connected Fragmentation Threshold set then averaged. through a wireless session. to the default value of 2,347. Both the laptops had NetIQ’s The WEP key was created For the unidirectional LAN Endpoint software running, with 26 hex digits and the throughput tests, the test bed and a Dell PC (connected to WPA key was created with 10 consisted of one laptop PC the LAN side of the access hex digits. wired to the broadband router’s point via a generic Fast LAN side and a second laptop Ethernet switch) served as the PC wired to the WAN side of Chariot console that managed the router. Both the laptops had the performance testing. NetIQ’s Chariot Endpoint soft- ware agent running, and one of In the access point tests, the laptops also served as the data clearly shows that users Chariot console that managed obtained higher throughput in the performance testing. the scenario with a Centrino 802.11b client NIC (Intel For the unidirectional WLAN- PRO/Wireless LAN 2100 3B to-WAN TCP throughput test, Mini PCI Adapter Driver the test bed consisted of one version 1.1.5.0) than the alter- laptop PC wired to the WAN native scenario with the Linksys side of the broadband router WPC11 Version 3 (Driver and the other maintained an version 5.131.0318.2003) 802.11wireless session to the 802.11b client NIC. Both NICs broadband router tested. Both were each slotted into an IBM the laptop PCs had NetIQ’s ThinkPad laptop PC with a Chariot Endpoint software 1.5-GHz Pentium M chipset, running and a Dell Computer and 256 Mbytes of memory Corp. PC connected to the running Microsoft Windows LAN side of the router served XP Professional Version 2002/ © 2002 The Tolly Group Page 7
  • 8. The Tolly Group Intel Corp. IXP425/IXP420 WLAN Test Bed 10.0.0.2 10.0.0.3 Wireless Client Wireless Client Running Chariot Endpoint Running Chariot Endpoint LAN 10.0.0.1 Broadband Router 10.0.0.4 Chariot Console Test setup for bidirectional WLAN-to-WLAN traffic Source: The Tolly Group, November 2003 Figure 7 The Tolly Group gratefully acknowledges the providers of test equipment used in this project. Vendor Product Web address NetIQ Corp. Chariot Ver 4.5 http://www.netiq.com NetIQ Corp. Chariot Endpoint Ver 4.3 http://www.netiq.com Tolly Group Services Project Profile With more than a decade of testing experience of leading- Sponsor: Intel Corp. edge network technologies, The Tolly Group employs Document number: 203141 time-proven test methodologies and fair testing principles Product class: Network processor for wireless gateways to benchmark products and services with the highest Broadband routers under test: degree of accuracy. Plus, unlike narrowly focused testing D-Link DI 774 Ver 1.25 (Arm 9) shops, The Tolly Group combines its vast technology Linksys WRV54G Ver 2.06 (Intel® IXP425) knowledge with focused marketing services to help clients Linksys WRT54G Ver 1.42.2 (Broadcom chipset) better position product benchmarks for maximum expo- Netgear FWAG114 Ver 1.0.19 (Broadcom BCM 4702) sure. The company offers an unparalleled array of reports Access Points under test: 3Com LAN AP8200 Ver 1.0.11 and services including: Test Summaries, Tolly Verifieds, D-Link DWL 7000AP Ver 1.04 (Intel® IXP420) performance certification programs, educational Cisco Aironet 1220 Ver 5.02.12 (IBM Power PC 405) Webcasts, white paper production, proof-of-concept test- Linksys WAP54G Ver 1.08 (Broadcom) ing, network planning, industry studies, end-user services, Testing window: September to November 2003 strategic consulting and integrated marketing Software status: services. Learn more about The Tolly Generally available Group services by calling (561) 391-5610, For more information on this document, or other services offered or send E-mail to sales@tolly.com. by The Tolly Group, visit our World Wide Web site at For info on the Fair Testing Charter, visit: http://www.tolly.com, send E-mail to sales@tolly.com, call www.tolly.com/About/ftc.asp (561) 391-5610. Information technology is an area of rapid growth and constant change. The Tolly Group conducts engineering-caliber testing in an effort to provide the IT industry with valuable information on current products and technology. While great care is taken to assure utmost accuracy, mistakes can occur. In no event shall The Tolly Group be liable for damages of any kind including direct, indirect, special, incidental, and consequential damages which may result from the use of information contained in this document. All trademarks are the property of their respective owners. The Tolly Group 203141 clk 18 Dec 03 © 2003 The Tolly Group Page 8

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