View Full Version : Recommended Firewall for Firewall Computer for Home LAN

02-08-2004, 03:54 PM
I'm thinking of moving from a dial-up connection to a high speed Internet connection via TelstraClear's High Speed Internet.

I've got a PIII 800MHz PC (Win98SE, 128MB) that I want to use between the High Speed Modem and our home LAN.

What is the best firewall software to install on this computer, inorder to protect the computers on the home LAN?

Is there any other software to consider?


Chris Stone

02-08-2004, 04:00 PM
Is that PC only going to be used as a firewall or will someone still use the PC for internet/email/word processing etc?

02-08-2004, 04:07 PM
That PC will only be used as a firewall PC.

All other use (internet/email/word processing et cetera) will be on PCs on the home LAN.

02-08-2004, 04:28 PM
This (http://www.ipcop.org) or this (http://www.smoothwall.org) may interest you then.

I have used IPCop myself and found it to be pretty easy to setup and use and also lots of help available on the net.
Smoothwall is supposed to be pretty good too. I think they are pretty similar from memory.

02-08-2004, 04:30 PM
I would suggest you buy an ADSL modem with a configurable Hardware Firewall... better than most software firewalls available, harder to hack allowing you to notice an attempted intrusion before they get through..

Also add in some software like, say, Sygate firewall or even Zone Alarm to other stations, these have a tendency to stop worms as well, remembering nothing is perfect these days.

Also running a stattic IP address and knowing where the "off" switch for the modem is does help... ;-)

02-08-2004, 04:46 PM
The firewall PC will probably be running a Windoze OS (either Win 98SE or Win XP Home).

The connection to the high speed internet will be via a cable modem which will be connected to TelstraClear's cable network.

I'll have to remember the "Big RED OFF Button" as a warning to users in our home.


02-08-2004, 04:55 PM
Actually ... just thinking there for a moment (and it is not really my field) BUT.... perhaps you could run lindows (linux) in your "server" unit , a goooey version of windows ??

Now even I'd like to hear some comment on that?

02-08-2004, 05:32 PM
I think spend the extra buck and get a hardware firewall built into the cable modem .. it is the first port of call and where you want to stop any unauthorised access. Shop around for them or try say ebay US for one compatable. then of course you'll need a router ......

02-08-2004, 05:37 PM
> The firewall PC will probably be running a Windoze OS
> (either Win 98SE or Win XP Home).

You will not be able to run IPCop or Smoothwall along with Windows on the firewall computer. The computer will need to be dedicated to either of those programs with no others installed.

Murray P
02-08-2004, 08:52 PM
Distrowatch Firewalls (http://www.distrowatch.com/dwres.php?resource=firewalls).

Some/most do more than merely being a firewall, routing and content filtering for example. You can run them on a much lower spec'd machine than what you intend to and many will run off a CD and some a floppy so no installation to a hard drive is necessary.

> I would suggest you buy an ADSL modem with a configurable Hardware Firewall...

Different technology, cable is not adsl. The cable modem supplied by Telstra is relatively dumb compared to an adsl modem/router, you need to add a router to be able to share a connection for example.

Cheers Murray P