General discussion


Do I need a firewall?

By camy2079 ·
My current situation is:

-about 50 users accessing the internet and e-mail.
-A T1 connection with the router configured with NAT.
-No WAN or web servers.
-The only outside connection is Terminal services.

It was suggested that I purchase a firewall (hardware) for seurity reasons, is this necessary. Is NAT not secure enough?

Considering my paranoid nature and the minimal cost it may make sense! Or not?

Thanks in advance

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How about Zone Alarm?

by businessdynamics In reply to Do I need a firewall?

AS for the security of NAT, well, I really can't comment (I don't know!). However, we have 6 users, 3 with Internet Access, and we use Norton Firewall: Difficult to configure without a degree in networking and costs; and Zone Alarm: Easy to configure and free to download! Wouldn't hurt you!

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Yes you do!

by falvarado In reply to Do I need a firewall?


Security should always be your number one concern, regardless of the size of your organization.

NAT (Network Address Translation) is not a security mechanism per se. It deals with using private addresses as per RFC 1**8 within your organization and then translating some or all of those addresses to valid Internet Addresses.

You state that you have about 50 users accessing Internet and E-mail. This alone should be enough to warrant having a firewall as your users may potentially be hacked, backdoor'd or receive a Trojan. You also state that your only outside connection is your Terminal Service. If you ask some of those script kiddies, I'm sure there may be more outside connections that you may not be aware of.

Allthis said, on the low end of the spectrum I suggest deploying a personal firewall to all your clients and servers. On the other hand I would also suggest (budget allowing) to deploy either a software based firewall (something like Checkpoint Firewall-1)or go with a hardware solution. The optimal solution IMO is to find an old 386 or better, add some RAM and at least 2 NIC's and install any flavor of Linux and run IPtables. This last option is probably the cheapest and best solution (having donethis myself for some customers), but may have a steep learning curve and initial high maintenance (while you learn if you don't know Linux). Once you are comfortable with Linux, it's no different or harder than maintaining any other OS.

Last butnot least, remember that Network security doesn't only work to protect us from the outsiders; it should also cover protection from those on the inside as well.

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Zone Alarm?

by tdhammer In reply to Yes you do!

We have a small office, 4 desktops including mine which is the "server" in a peer-to-peer network. We subscribe to local DSL service. I realized today we don't have a firewall, we do have virus software. I remember when I first came here the Zone Alarm warning used to pop-up all the time. I believe our outside computer guru disabled it a few months back. I'm thinking about getting Symantec Internet Protection. Is Zone Alarm really any good - or do you get what you pay for?

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You need a Firewall

by sbnetsec In reply to Do I need a firewall?

You need a firewall because the sophiscation of attacks these days.
Sonicwall firewalls are good and cost-effective.
Please visit and look for SOHO3/50 user. I am a certified reseller for sonicwall and I can get you one.
my site is
Good luck.

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