Tillered works using a concept where you place traffic routing nodes in remote parts of the internet, where ultra high speed connectivity is necessary. You do not need to have any specific hardware or datacentre space, as it utilizes virtual machines in datacentres such as Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services (AWS) or any other private datacenter or cloud provider which offers Hyper-V or VMware Server tenancies.

The Process

For a general setup you create a virtual machine in the DMZ right next to your corporate LAN. You will require a firewall that supports policy routing, and a small amount of configuration is required.

Next, we create either a Full Tillered Node (FTN) or a Tillered Entry Node (TEN). This allows traffic from your LAN to be policy routed into the tuned Tillered network.

Finally we create cloud exit nodes (CEN's), geographically closer to the content you wish to access. If you want to use a remote office or LAN as an exit point then a FTN note type may be required.
We provide images in the Microsoft Azure Marketplace and AWS Marketplace if you wish to use a cloud provider.

There are 3 types of nodes you can create and these are selectable when you provision the node:

  • Tillered Entry Node (TEN)

    This node type accepts connection request data into the Tillered network.

  • Tillered Cloud Exit Node (CEN)

    This node type provides an exit point where data is natted out into the public internet.

  • Full Tillered Node (FTN)

    This node serves both purposes of a TEN and CEN.


Add your node to the network, following the provisioning instructions. The node will take a short time to provision and the status of it will be show in the web interface. Once the node is in a ready then you will be able to route traffic to it.

Next, we need to configure our firewall. You can use Layer-6 session routing, by setting policies for example, I would like all netflix traffic to go out of Exit Node IP (x.x.x.x). Or more commonly we would set a policy route, to say all traffic with a destination of a european IP address needs to be routed to IP (x)

When the node interfaces appear, there will be links with T-{x} interfaces which represent a path to each exit node. Here we can configure the path settings. We can tell Tillered to tune the connection using TCP, or UDP. We can enable transparent mode, and set QoS limits.

Inside Tillered Hub

In Tillered Hub there are instructions on how to add a node. The node type is set and the rest of the screen will provide instructions on how to attach it to your Tillered Hub account depending on the virtualisation software running it (EC2/Azure/Hyper-V/VMware).

Also inside the hub, you will be able to view the node, and see the interfaces list attached. You will require these IP addresses so you can tell your firewall where to route the traffic to.

The settings to adjust the link traffic type between the two nodes will be on the FTN or TEN's interface list. Here you can set the link type to TCP or UDP. TCP is the default mode and is great for copying large files gaining maxumum speed. UDP on the other hand is perfect for streaming, and having an instance ramp-up. Our UDP mode does use FEC.

Common Tillered Network Designs

The simplest setup uses an entry and exit node. The firewall can determine what traffic via a policy route what traffic is routed to the T-{xxx} local address in the DMZ, and this traffic will be sent to the internet via the CEN.

The slightly more advanced setups' as shown in the below diagram as Extended LAN or Extended LAN2 depict two Full Tillered nodes. This would generally be used if you wished to join two LAN's together, perhaps one in Australia and one in the United Kingdom. The exetended LAN2 is the same setup, with an additional cloud exit node that could be placed in another location.

One way extended LAN is an example of using a Tillered node to create a setup similar to a regular SD WAN where the traffic from one remote LAN will connect to the public internet via another location.

Working Example

We've implemented a small Tillered setup that demonstrates the impressive capabilities of this network optimization solution. In this setup, we've deployed a Tillered Entry Node (TEN) at a home location in Auckland and a Tillered Cloud Exit Node (CEN) in a data center in Los Angeles. The results have been remarkable.

Before routing our traffic through the Tillered network, we conducted a speed test to WhiteSky Communications' speedtest.net server, yielding a respectable 447 Mbps download and 316 Mbps upload. However, once we routed our traffic through the Tillered Entry Node (TEN) from our firewall, the performance skyrocketed. We achieved an impressive 1853 Mbps download and 1641 Mbps upload, showcasing the significant improvement in speed and connectivity that Tillered can offer.

This real-world example demonstrates how Tillered can enhance your network's performance, even across international distances. Whether you're optimizing for remote work or accessing critical resources, Tillered can make a substantial difference in your network's efficiency and speed.

Speed Test Before Tillered Implementation: 447 Mbps Download and 316 Mbps Upload

Speed Test After Tillered Optimization: 1853 Mbps Download and 1641 Mbps Upload

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