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UnixReview.com: Firewall Roundup: Offerings from SuSE, Mandrake, and Coyote Linux

Feb 20, 2002, 16:31 (11 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Joe 'Zonker' Brockmeier)
"Whether you run a small business or large corporation -- or just have a desktop PC at home -- if you're connected to the Internet for any amount of time, you need a firewall to keep your data safe. People with ill intentions will try everything from stealing your credit card data, to exploiting open mail relays for spam, or even manipulating potential (and unwitting) participants in Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks.

You must decide what kind of firewall you need, and whether you want to set it up yourself from scratch or have a little help. It's certainly possible to install just about any Linux distribution, or one of the *BSDs, and configure that to run as a firewall. For the more technically inclined, it's not difficult. However, most of us would rather spend our quality time doing something other than configuring a firewall from scratch.

I've taken a look at two commercial Linux products (SuSE Firewall on CD and Mandrake Single Network Firewall) and one of the most popular non-commercial firewall distros (Coyote Linux) to see what features and options they offer. Each of these firewall distributions is based on the 2.2.19 kernel, and they're all IPChains-based. But that's where the similarities end. The installation and setup procedure for each distro is unique, and each one has features that make it perfect for some applications and not suitable for others."

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