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LAN & WAN Reviews

New Features

The 318G lacks the dual WAN ports of the 336G, but supports a full range of routing features, including both NAT and Router modes, Dynamic DNS to four different providers (DynDNS, TZO, Oray, and 3322), dynamic routing (RIP), and static routing. 

Of course a key improvement is the 318G's Gigabit ports; one WAN and eight switched LAN. NETGEAR moved all ports to the front on the 318G, vs. the rear on the 318 and 336G.  I like having the Ethernet ports in front since I'm moving cables around all the time. But it's strictly a personal preference—you might be just as big a fan of rear-mounted ports and hate the 318G's arrangement.

NETGEAR missed two key opportunities on the 318G's switch, though.  First, the 318G doesn't have jumbo frame support.  The MTU value on the WAN port can be changed to values other than 1500 Bytes to support various ISP requirements as shown in Figure 5. But there are no options on the LAN ports to change MTU size.

WAN MTU

Figure 5: WAN MTU

Sometimes vendors don't spec jumbo frame support, but enable them anyway. So I ran a test between two jumbo frame-enabled devices connected to the 318G's LAN ports, and found I could not pass data with frame sizes larger than 1962 bytes. Technically, anything larger than 1500 Bytes is a jumbo frame. But typical jumbo frame devices use frame sizes of 4000-9000 Bytes, so the 318G fails the jumbo frame test.

Second, with eight LAN ports, I would like to have seen 802.1q VLAN support.  Dividing a network into VLANs can provide a lot of value, including enhanced security and VoIP performance. In fact, the Broadcom BCM53118 switch used in the 318G supports VLANs, QoS and up to 9K jumbo frames. But NETGEAR hasn't exposed any of those abilities.

The 318G does allow LAN Multi-homing, which can split the LAN into multiple subnets (see my review of NETGEAR's FVX538). However, Multi-homing isn't as useful as VLANs because it doesn't separate broadcast domains. And the FVS318G's LAN DHCP server only provides IP addresses in one subnet.

Security & Firewall

The Security menu has eight different sections, each with up to six subsections as shown in Table 2.  The firewall uses a rules and services model, which is powerful, but sometimes confusing for less experienced networkers. Some services come preset in a pick list and you can define additional services if they aren't in the list. Up to three different schedules can be created and applied to any rule.

The 318G also offers web traffic filtering based on keywords or URLs.  MAC based filtering can also be applied, limiting network access to only known devices.   Port Triggering is also supported to activate firewall rules when outbound traffic is detected on specific ports.

Security Menus

Configuration Options

 

Services

Custom Services

 

 

 

 

 

Schedule

Schedule 1

Schedule 2

Schedule 3

 

 

 

Block Sites

Content Filtering

Web Components

Apply Keyword Blocking

Keyword Blocking

Trusted Domains

 

Firewall

LAN WAN Rules

DMZ WAN Rules

LAN DMZ Rules

Attack Checks

Session Limits

Advanced (ALG)

 

Address Filter

Source MAC Filter

IP/MAC Binding

 

 

 

 

Port Triggering

 

 

 

 

 

 

UPnP

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bandwidth Profile

 

 

 

 

 

 

Table 2: Security menu summary

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Over In The Forums

https://fccid.io/MSQ-RTAXI600
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