Mars II Firewall 1U Server

Mars II 1U Server
Mars II 1U BackMars II 1U InsideRemove rack ears for desktop chasis

Mars II Firewall 1U Server. 1.8Ghz Dual-Core Intel Atom D525. Five (5) x Gigabit Ethernet (2 x Intel 82573L and 3 x Intel 82541PI). Up to 7 Intel Gigabit Interfaces through PCI expansion. 2GB (maximum 8GB) DDR3 Memory. Stateful inspection firewall. 50-1,000 users. Up to 1,000,000 concurrent connections. 45-87 Mbps IPSec VPN throughputs. 1U short-depth case dimension: 19" x 1.75" x 9.84". Utilizing pfSense® software.

pfSense® software is an open-source firewall distribution based on FreeBSD.

The 1U Server Mars II Firewall appliance has been employed at the following network locations to protect SMB (Small and Medium Business) and Enterprise:

  2. Branch Office
  3. VPN Endpoints
  4. Internet edge


  1. Short-Depth 1U Rackmount Case. The form factor of the 1U server is about 19 inches by 10 inches by 1.75 inches in dimensions. Weight about 12 lbs.
    • The 1U rack ears can be removed to turn into a desktop chassis. See picture!
  2. Intel 1.8Ghz Dual-Core Atom D525
    • High Performance IPSec VPN without VPN Hardware Accelerator: 45Mbps 3DES and 87Mbps AES256
    • Performance for UTM (Unified Threat Management) applications
  3. Five (5) Intel Gigabit Ethernet Ports, expandable to Seven (7) Intel Gigabit Ethernet:
    • Multi-WAN for load balancing, redundancy and failover
  4. Preloaded pfSense® current Stable Release, firmware on a 2GB SATA DOM (Disk-on-Module).
    • Silent, No Moving Part, and more reliable than a hard drive
    • More durable than Flash drive or Compact Flash
Price: $899.99
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Capabilities, Performance and Cost Comparison:

Firewall Mars II 1U Server Cisco ASA 5525-X3 Cisco ASA 5545-X3
Performance Summary
Concurrent Sessions 1,000,000 (2GB RAM) 400,000 750,000
Firewall Throughput 1.2 Gbps (600 Mbps8) 2 Gbps 3 Gbps
IPSec VPN Throughput 70 Mbps AES-2561
(87 Mbps AES2562)
45Mbps 3DES1
(85 Mbps 3DES2)
116 Mbps4
(225 Mbps3)
153 Mbps4
(400 Mbps3)
Maximum Site-to-Site and Remote Access VPN Sessions 10,000
(limited by RAM capacity)
750 2500
Load Balancing
Four (4) WAN
(up to six (6) WAN, limited by number
of available interfaces)
? ?
Failover Supported Active/Standby5 Active/Standby Active/Active6 Active/Standby Active/Active6
Technical Summary
CPU Speed 1.8Ghz Dual-Core Atom D525 multicore, enterprise class multicore, enterprise class
Memory 2GB (max 8GB) 8GB 12GB
Storage 2GB Flash Drive
(optional 2.5inch HD/SSD)
8GB System Flash 8GB System Flash
Interfaces 5 Intel Gigabit Ethernet Ports
(Expandable to seven (7) Intel Gigabit Ethernet Ports)
8 Gigabit Ethernet ports
and 1 Gigabit Ethernet Dedicated Management port
(Expandable 14 Gigabit Ethernet ports)
8 Gigabit Ethernet ports
and 1 Gigabit Ethernet Dedicated Management port
(Expandable 14 Gigabit Ethernet ports)
Virtual Interfaces (VLAN) ~4,000 200 300
Power Consumption 45W ~ 400W (estimated) ~ 400W (estimated)
Additional Network Security Capabilities
Intrusion Prevention Snort
(Subscription required)
IPS Edition License features IPS Edition License features
Anti-spam, anti-phishing, URL filtering Squid
(HD required)
Content Security Plus License features Content Security Plus License features
Content Security
(Anti-virus, Anti-Spyware, File Blocking)
(HD Required)
Content Security Plus License features Content Security Plus License features
Cost $900 $6,0877 $11,3237


1As measured by IPerf.
2With the Soekris VPN1411 VPN Hardware Accelerator.
3As reported in Cisco Sales Literature and Documentation. (Cisco Router Performance data come from here.)
4Estimated from Cisco ASA 5510 iperf data. The IPerf performance of the Cisco ASA 5510 was measured and discussed in the article IPSec Performance of Cisco ASA 5510 as Measured by IPerf.
5Detail CARP configuration is discussed at Active-active configuration is not possible at this time.
6Active/Active configuration requires multiple security contexts (or virtual firewalls).
7Cisco ASA firewall cost is typically found on the Internet and includes the basic firewall feature set of Cisco ASA Software Release 8.2. Advanced features like security contexts and active/active high-availability may require additional licenses.
8With a specialized dual-WAN configuration in a lab environment! Under a normal real-world configuration of one WAN, the best throughput is 600Mbps, because the NICs are based on the 32-bit PCI architecture.

Support and Warranty

  1. One (1) year industry standard warranty. A single contact for both hardware and software issues.
  2. Depend on the maintenance options, we will walk you through the initial VPN server setup to configuration of multi-wan load balancing and failover