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Author Topic: Firewall needed?  (Read 4752 times)

TLM

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Firewall needed?
« on: November 02, 2009, 07:35:47 pm »

Ok, I can now do everything in Linux that I was doing in Window$. I only have one concern left. I understand that Linux is pretty much immune to viruses since most infections are coded specifically to attack Redmond based OSes. I need to know about firewalls. I do a fair amount of online ordering, and I need to know if I am safe as long as I am not running as root, or do I need to set up a firewall?

I run several distros on my machine; 2 versions of VL, 2 versions of PCLinuxOS, and 2 derivatives of PuppyLinux. Vector is the snappiest, PCLinuxOS has more stuff in its repos, and Puppy is just plain cool! I have noticed that all of these distros have options for setting up firewalls, although none of them already have it setup by default. Do I need to set up a firewall to be safe? Still using Window$ for online transactions until I figure this out. Thanks for any and all help.
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rbistolfi

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Re: Firewall needed?
« Reply #1 on: November 02, 2009, 08:31:12 pm »

Thats a matter of opinion. I think you have to run oe if you are runing services that are listening to some port that is exposed to the internet. Example of this can be samba, cups, mysql, vnc. If you are running some of these it is more like you would want to hide them from the Internet, by runing a firewall. I am behind a router, and I think its the best option to use the router built in firewall if possible. If that is not an option, I use the linux standard tool for this, iptables. It is a comand line firewall that can be used to build complex rules for allowing or denying traffic from your box to the outside and viceversa. It is a bit hard to learn, but there is good tutorials and examples online.
Maybe someone else can recommend a good friendly gui for iptables, I dont know any.
For online transactions be sure you have the latest version of your browser installed.

HTH
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"There is a concept which corrupts and upsets all others. I refer not to Evil, whose limited realm is that of ethics; I refer to the infinite."
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TLM

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Re: Firewall needed?
« Reply #2 on: November 02, 2009, 08:53:19 pm »

Thanks! Thats a good start. I am not running any of the services you mentioned. Also, I too am behind a wireless router, although my desktop is using a wired connection to it. I can filter MAC addresses and addtional firewall measures within my router's settings. Thanks for your response.
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rbistolfi

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Re: Firewall needed?
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2009, 06:44:22 am »

My soul came back to my body when you said "although my desktop is using a wired connection" ;D
The hardware firewall should be enough. A good tool that can help you is nmap. Try in a terminal

Code: [Select]
nmap localhost
Also find out your public IP and then

Code: [Select]
nmap <IP_ADDRESS_HERE>
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"There is a concept which corrupts and upsets all others. I refer not to Evil, whose limited realm is that of ethics; I refer to the infinite."
Jorge Luis Borges, Avatars of the Tortoise.

--
Jumalauta!!

Andy Price

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Re: Firewall needed?
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2009, 12:04:26 am »

I don't want to appear to be knocking Windows, but there seems to be a whole load of (Windows) malware around at the moment aimed at stealing bank/credit card details. This stuff install itself on your PC and you don't even know it's there. So... I think I'd rather use Linux even without a firewall than take a risk with Windows.

If you want belt and braces and decide to install a firewall in VL, then I've found Firestarter - which is in the reps - easy to set up.
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