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How do I measure the performance of a Linux router?

What are the performance figures of a router? How do I measure the performance of a Linux router?

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Typically, we calculate the following two values to check the performance of a router. The first is throughput, or how many packets can the router handle per second. A high value indicates better performance. The second is latency, or how much latency does the router introduce during the processing of the packet. A low value indicates better router.

You can measure these values for a Linux box to see the performance of the Linux router. I recently came across an article which talks about performance testing of Linux bridge. In the article, the authors calculate the performance measures for the Linux bridge and compare them with a Cisco Catalyst 2950 switch to get relative performance statistics for the Linux box. Your performance testing should be similar.

This was first published in January 2005

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