If you are an internet savvy person, then you might have heard or know about a firewall, especially if you use a cable modem or DSL connection. Firewall actually acts like a barrier for keeping away troublesome forces from your system. This is the reason why it is known as firewall. Firewalls are of various types and their main job is to protect your system from unauthorized intrusions. You can configure a firewall for home use as well as for using it in a business environment.
Main functions of a firewall
Personal firewall software prevents connections amid your system and the network, except for the programs, which the firewall software consider trustworthy. The main functions of a firewall include:
- It filters information coming via an internet connection to your system
- It stops the incoming packet if the filters flag it
- Firewalls also put forward proxy service
- Some firewalls apply a new method in which they do not examine the contents of every packet, instead they compare some of the key parts of a packet
- It also monitors information that travels from within the firewall to outside to look for specific characteristics and if a reasonable match is found after comparison, then it is allowed to pass through.
Setting up firewall for home system
If you surf the net all the time, then you should know the way to set up firewall for home use. All you have to do is:
- If you use a router, then first of all you will have to install a firewall in your system
- If you use Mac, then you will have to open “System Preferences” and then select “Security” under “Personal” tab.
- Then go to Firewall pane and click on “Start” button
- For Windows, you will have to go to the Control Panel and then select the “Security Center” which you will find under the section of “Manage Security Settings…,”
- Then Select Windows Firewall and then turn it on
Choosing the right firewall for work
While setting up firewall for work, you will have to decide whether you will go with hardware firewall or software firewall. You can set up a hardware firewall, if you want added security for your work. For work or corporate use, a host-based firewall can be more useful, as it prevents the host from being infected and also stops other infected hosts to spread a malware.
Configuring firewall for work
A firewall for work has to be configured for each machine depending on the operating system. Apart from Mac and Windows, you can also setup firewall with a Linux box, which can be affordable. For this you have to:
- Make sure that your system fulfills minimum hardware requirements
- Install Linux and then turn off the services that are not necessary
- You will need a way for getting your firewall connected to your ISP other than IP filtering tools
- Those, who use a cable modem will have to install Dynamic Host Control Protocol client for handling IP address assignments
Instead of manually setting up a Linux firewall, you can use a firewall configuration tool for this purpose.