Digium - Phone Systems - to Power Your Business

Security Check

network security options

BeawIT Consulting, LLC, JC Beasley

Since the introduction on broadband internet and its ingestion into everyday life we have this constant always on connection to everything. The age of information has put every one in a constant state of defense, protecting private and some personal aspects of our life. One cannot just depend on the security of these internet router/modems we get from our Internet Service Providers. Implementing you own firewall solution to add that extra layer of protection. There are many options to choose from when you are securing your network. You have hardware and software based firewall devices. There are  options to accomplishing this and I am going to lay a few options out that can help secure your network. 


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Pfsense is an opensource firewall/router based on the software distro known as FreeBSD.

You can runpfSenseon bare metal hardware on in a virtual machine. Good thing about this system is that it can be managed from the web based gui without you needing to know about the underlying FreeBSD system in order to manage. So yes you do not need to make configuration changed from the command line interface. Since being released in 2006 and being used by thousands of enterprises, pfSense is swiftly becoming the most trusted open source network security solution in the world. In my evaluation of pfSense I found the install to be pretty straight forward and once done I had no issue accessing the web gui to take a look at some of the various configuration options. It has an amazing interface that was easy to navigate and simple features for all the various security features. Anyone no matter small or large organization I would recommend pfSense as a number one contender for a firewall/security option. take a look at the system features that you can try out with pfSense.


So Ipfire is hardened open source distro that was build off of Linux from Scratch and is not based on any other distribution. Its main focus is security the system is minimalistic in that the lesser amount of services running the more secure the system is. Ipfire supports add-on that allow you to make the system into a full fledged SOHO system.

I was able to load Ipfire into an running virtual machine to play around with. I found the interface to be similar to that of pfsense. some setting looked different, but that is just how the gui looked. for a bare install you can have a hardened firewall and intrusion prevention system up in a matter of minutes.  

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The Smoothwall Open Source Project created in 2000 to develop and maintain Smoothwall Express - a Free firewall that includes its own security-hardened GNU/Linux operating system and an easy-to-use web interface. These are some of the features of SmoothWall:



Open Source Security


pfSense is base on FreeBSD
  •  Configuration
  • Content Filter & Proxy
  • Firewall & Router
  • Intrusion Prevention System
  • Enterprise Security
  • Reporting & Moitoring
  • Server Load Balancing
  • System Security
  • Web GUI
  •  User Authentication
  • VPN


The Open Source Firewall


  • Security
  • Firewall
  • Web GUI
  • Intrusion Detection & Prevention System
  • VPN
  • Optional Add-ons


Security Hardened GNU/Linux


  • Firewall
  • Proxie
  • Port Forwarding
  • IDS via SNORT
  • Realtime Traffic Graphs
  • Web Gui