Packet Recorder Project – Jay’s Planning Stage

Packet Recorder Project – Jay’s Planning Stage

The Task Ahead

Your task, Jay, should you choose to accept it, is to design and build a high-speed packet recorder that is capable of capturing and analysing captured network traffic packets.

As always, should your device fail to match the requirements or, indeed, fail to work, the team will disavow any knowledge of your failed proceedings. You have been provided all the tools necessary to complete you mission. This blog will self-destruct at the end of the last paragraph. Good luck, Jay!

My mission

My mission is set, I know what I must do.

Day 1

Where do I start…? Hardware? Learning the software? Maybe I’ll configure a virtual server? Let’s start with creating a plan of action first.

Phase 1; lets design our server. My server will contain an AMD Ryzen 3 Central Processing Unit, so let’s build the server around this.

My components:

  • AMD Ryzen 3 1300x CPU
  • 240GB Gigabyte SSD
  • 16GB x DDR Corsair RAM
  • Asus ROG Motherboard STRIX B450-F
  • Case
  • PSU
  • DAG card

I’ve chosen these components based on a few variables. The first was form factor, I would love for this device to be as small as possible to allow it to be easily portable, so, I’ve taken the size of the DAG card I’ve been given and found that I can use a Micro ITX Motherboard and still have accessibility to all my other components on the motherboard. Another variable I took into consideration whilst finding the components was, the device being able to maintain it’s ability to analyse packets. I needed for it to be future proofed. I found all the minimum requirements for a device like this, and then found a compatible piece of hardware that could do double the requirement. Price also was a factor in my decision making for these components. I needed to fall under budget, and still produce a good enough device that can perform. So, I made sure each piece of hardware had a good virtual benchmark with the other components whilst being priced well enough to land the overall device under budget.


Another part of the checks I’ve had to go through is the compatibility between hardware, some components just wont work well, or at all, with each other. I initially checked the overall voltage needed to power the finished device and compared this to the Power Supply Unit; I did this to ensure my PSU can sufficiently provide enough power to all the components. Once this was done, I began to check that my Motherboard allowed for two ram slots, multiple PCI express expansion slots and would allow them all to fit into a small enough chassis when complete.

This has been Day 1 of the build.


Author: Jay Dare – Apprentice Technical Consultant