woodrowbone

Level 9
Hi guys, I saw this router mentioned in another thread, I saw it worthy of it´s own thread.

Avira SafeThings

Lets discuss what we can find out about it.
I like the fact that it has a lifetime subscription like ASUS AiProtection for example.
The looks of it is horrible, let´s hope this is not the final design...Avira, let´s get in to the new century please :p

/W
 

Windows_Security

Level 22
Content Creator
Trusted
Verified
With Windows10 becoming stronger and the freeware enabling advanced features of WindowsDefender (e.g. ConfigureDefender) and/or adding additional security layers to OS (e.g. OSarmor) the market share of paid AV's is dropping slowly as is the upgrade conversion rate of free versions to paid premium versions).

Luckily for the AV-vendors most Android mobile phone makers lack in patch management (monthly Chrome Android updates are at best pushed to mobile phones in a three month interval for at most two years) and Internet Of Things device makers do not comply to the basic securiy features (no patches, no secured connections, no easy/forced admin password change, etc). With only a handfull of smart devices in our household, my bad luck statistics hit the 100% percent mark, because all had (some still have) unpatched security flaws.

This opens up a whole new market for AV-vendors: AV & UTM integrated devices to provide a layer of protection for all the connected smart devices in our homes. So in future I will buy a router with monthly subscription for AV-blacklist and AI-monitoring, but I will with wait until MIMO & MESH become mainstream.
 
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Slyguy

Level 40
Every home will have a UTM appliance within 10 years, it's almost a requirement. Avira's hardware looks solid, just a bit less than Gryphon but close enough. Avira Safe Things doesn't appear to offer any advanced IPS or Malware Protection, but rather looks like a more secured router with additional features and control.

However on the plus side, it has no subscription and doesn't require you to use Avira's own stand alone stuff after the first free year. Whereas other solutions tend to have a yearly fee because they offer traditional AV protection and advanced IPS features that require updating.
 

woodrowbone

Level 9
I am not sure how to compare the hardware in these thing, Avira run a quad-core lower MHz (717), similar for Gryphon right?
ASUS AC86U for example is running a dual-core with a much higher MHz (1.8)
I know the cpus have different architecture, but what does that translate in to in real life?
Is core count or MHz boss here?

/W
 

Windows_Security

Level 22
Content Creator
Trusted
Verified
Cores versus clock frequency.

I swapped the motherboard of my old Windows 7 desktop Pentium dual core (with 5GHz mobo throughput) with an old I7 920 (with 4.8 GHz mobo throughput) having nearly same Passmark CPU benchmark. . It was faster swapping mobo than installing Windows 7 completely for an older relative who had problems getting used to Windows 10.

Because I have a silent PC-case (isolated) and old i7-920 uses a lot more energy and produces a lot more heat, I reduced the clock frequency a little and added a 120mm fan (my PC case was fan less except for the fan which was build in the power unit) to reduce the heat of CPU.

To my surprise the startup of Chrome felt faster. Testing it with AppTimer indeed showed the old i7 is faster in practice. The i7 was 15% faster than the Pentium (CPU benchmark), but with reduced clock frequency it should be nearly the same.

The benefit of being able to process tasks in parallel with low to CPU load has more practical advantage because 90% of the time we are not using 100% of CPU capacity. So my guess is that more cores/threads is beneficial when CPU capacity is not utilized to the max (compared to CPU with less cores and simular CPU benchmark).
 
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Handsome Recluse

Level 19
Verified
Cores versus clock frequency.

I swapped the motherboard of my old Windows 7 desktop Pentium dual core (with 5GHz mobo throughput) with an old I7 920 (with 4.8 GHz mobo throughput) having nearly same Passmark CPU benchmark. . It was faster swapping mobo than installing Windows 7 completely for an older relative who had problems getting used to Windows 10.

Because I have a silent PC-case (isolated) and old i7-920 uses a lot more energy and produces a lot more heat, I reduced the clock frequency a little and added a 120mm fan (my PC case was fan less except for the fan which was build in the power unit) to reduce the heat of CPU.

To my surprise the startup of Chrome felt faster. Testing it with AppTimer indeed showed the old i7 is faster in practice. The i7 was 15% faster than the Pentium (CPU benchmark), but with reduced clock frequency it should be nearly the same.

The benefit of being able to process tasks in parallel with low to CPU load has more practical advantage because 90% of the time we are not using 100% of CPU capacity. So my guess is that more cores/threads is beneficial when CPU capacity is not utilized to the max (compared to CPU with less cores and simular CPU benchmark).
 

AndreiP

New Member
Hi everyone,

As one of the guys behind the SafeThings product, I was extremely pleased to run into this thread.

I’d love to learn more about your thoughts around our product:
- what would motivate you to buy such a product?
- what is it missing in the product that would turn it into a must-have?

Thanks everyone,
Andrei
 

Glashouse

Level 4
Verified
Hi @AndreiP,

perhaps I am not the average user, but for me, Avira Safethings has the same drawback as its competition:
As far as I got it you have to use the build in WiFi which I don't want to do as I need more access points to cover my house.
Every AP is wired as I don't like meshed APs.

Sending all traffic through two ethernet ports (one in, one out) would be a cool feature....

But as I said, I might not be your main target for this product.

cheers
 

Cortex

Level 8
I'm not fond of controlling such devices via yet another app, I have enough trouble maintaining battery levels on my iPhone 8 already without further drain - Probably the wrong generation? I would first be interested on tests in real world experiences before buying anyway. Two Ethernet ports not enough for me at all. All in all looks good but as it's controlled from the 'cloud' I can only wonder if my streamer for example will suddenly be removed for reasons unknown? I and any cloud often do disagree. I will be interested in time, maybe. BTW I really dislike Avira AV solutions so I don't suppose that helps either :emoji_fearful:
 

AndreiP

New Member
Hi @AndreiP,

perhaps I am not the average user, but for me, Avira Safethings has the same drawback as its competition:
As far as I got it you have to use the build in WiFi which I don't want to do as I need more access points to cover my house.
Every AP is wired as I don't like meshed APs.

Sending all traffic through two ethernet ports (one in, one out) would be a cool feature....

But as I said, I might not be your main target for this product.

cheers
The hw config (MIMO) allows us to roll out mesh capabilities in the near future. But I totally understand heavy techies want to build and control the infrastructure on their own ;).

The traffic pass-through idea is great. Thanks a lot!
 
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woodrowbone

Level 9
Hi everyone,

As one of the guys behind the SafeThings product, I was extremely pleased to run into this thread.

I’d love to learn more about your thoughts around our product:
- what would motivate you to buy such a product?
- what is it missing in the product that would turn it into a must-have?

Thanks everyone,
Andrei
Hi Andrei, welcome to the forum!

I for one would like you to adress some of the questions already asked in this thread, IPS, Malware protection, CPU comparison etc.

/W
 

AndreiP

New Member
Hi Andrei, welcome to the forum!

I for one would like you to adress some of the questions already asked in this thread, IPS, Malware protection, CPU comparison etc.

/W
Definitely.

Re CPU comparison - we chose to go for more cores vs high frequency because we profit more from parallelisation rather than high computing power. We deemed it's best to distribute tasks like L3 routing and acceleration, networking ancillary services (DHCP, DNS proxying, mesh etc), packet sniffing / inspection, and additional services (VPN server, smart home services, plus more additional features to come) over separate cores.
We did a lot of benchmarking at the beginning and this architecture was a winner.

Re malware protection - we are not doing DPI, but rather a shallow inspection of packages in the sense that we are not analysing the payloads that are being trafficked across the network (with a few exceptions that are required for device ID). Since SafeThings was built to secure connected devices other than the traditional ones (Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS), we rely most of out anomaly detection engines on regression / machine learning algorithms that continuously baseline the *network behaviour* of the IP connected devices.
Some examples: a connected light bulb should not employ FTP connections, a thermostat from the same vendor/same model in the same geography should have a similar network behaviour to other similar deployments - and if it starts connecting to a strange DNS/IP then the anomaly sensing starts and actions are enforced. All that ML logic happens in the cloud.
Malware protection at the edge, on traditional devices, can be complemented with Avira AV endpoint protection.

Re IPS - on top of the anomaly detection engines, we're also checking all the incoming connections (against blacklists & behaviour-wise), as well as the connections between the LAN devices to sense botnet CNC activity or devices with dodgy behaviour (ip cam doing port scanning, smart tv maintaining an always-on connection with a cloud service, failed login attempts over ssh/httpbauth etc.).
 

motox781

Level 8
Verified
AV's getting into the router business. Good thing. I'd rather my stuff be protected at the 'point of entry'. The question is, which one to choose that actually "updates" firmware on time when vunerabilities/etc are detected (like android phone manufacturers or box store routers of today.../facepalm) + a thousand other variables over my head haha.

I'll prob buy one in the next couple of years. My Google WIFI Mesh is working fine for me ATM.

@Slyguy prob has the best consumer router available ATM (Gryphon). I'm sure they do a good job.
 
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woodrowbone

Level 9
@AndreiP
In a product like this, Malware protection and packet inspection is necessary, I think all the competition have it?
If I choose a product to protect my entry point, it should be able to protect all appliances hanging on the LAN side.
Regardless if it is a PC or a fridge. The PC could be installed with poor security, making the entry point very important.
To make the product more interesting for more people, the possibility to use it as transparent bride, filtering the traffic behind another router would be a great thing.
I think this is what Glashouse ment also, or?

/W
 
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Threadripper

Level 4
Everything on my network bar an Amazon Echo and Smart TV are on Linux or iOS, I wonder which would be worth buying as the actual AV software they come with will be of no use.
 
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