We're planning to split up our LAN into several subnets in order to seperate organisational units and isolate SAN/NAS traffic from the rest of the network. We also need to create several DMZ'ed sandbox networks as lab areas, and we have to setup isolated subnets for customer VPN gateway machines.
These subnets, with the exception of the storage network, will not have much traffic on them, so enterprise level routers would be overkill, and we couldn't afford them anyway.
We basically need a solution which puts a whole bunch of cheap routers in one rack.
'til now, we've been considering either:
1) Filling up a rack server with as many nics will fit and runnning some kind of Linux or BSD firewall distro on it.
3) Buying a whole bunch of cheap home routers for which open source firmware exists (like openwrt)
3) FInding an affordable appliance that does what we want (haven't found one yet)
Whaddya think, experts?