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Win2K3 SBS setup, routing / firewall question

By clabrown ·
I'm doing a Win2K3 Small Business Server installation, and it's REALLY SURE that it wants to configure the server with 2 NICs, one to the Internet and one to the LAN, and control the LAN's Internet access through the server. I've never setup a Windows Server in this role and wonder if it's really a recommendation in the real world. How secure is Win2K3 SBS in this configuration? I could see it might make some configuration issues easier, if these is automatic linkage between services enabled on the server, and ports opened or closed in the firewall / router.

Bottom line, Small network, 5 workstations, Win2K3 SBS, DSL access.

1. Should I trust Win2K3 SBS to perform the firewall routing function behind a simple NAT router to the Internet?

2. Or get a real firewall, put only 1 NIC in the server and let the server talk through the firewall just like all the other PCs ?

I need a fast simple solution installed yesterday.

Thanks, Cla

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Get a real firewall

by faradhi In reply to Win2K3 SBS setup, routing ...

Sonicwall make some that are ideal for small business. I am a windows administrator and under no circumstances would I use windows as a firewall.

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Get a real Firewall

by BFilmFan In reply to Win2K3 SBS setup, routing ...

Never ever use Windows as a software firewall when it is running Active Directory.

Ditto on the advice of get a real firewall.

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SBS and 2 NICS

by jnyphoto In reply to Win2K3 SBS setup, routing ...

I would suggest that you subscribe to the SBS newsgroup. You will find many posts that say the dual NIC is a standard install. You will also learn a lot about SBS 2003. Enjoy


BTW I have several installs with one NIC and a hardware firewall that I use to VPN to other sites.

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Which SBS newsgroup?

by clabrown In reply to SBS and 2 NICS

Which SBS newsgroup do you recommend?

Sounds like even though you've read posts about dual NIC SBS you install yours with one NIC and a firewall.

The Installation Wizard indicates that IT considers dual NIC to be THE standard method. Kind of gives me the "willeys" given Windows security history.

On the other hand I'd like a path of least resistance, and I know sometimes it's better not to fight Microsoft if they REALLY WANT a particular configuration.

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just run through router.

by richard In reply to Win2K3 SBS setup, routing ...

this is the quickest why to set it up. just close of any port/services on your router that you do not use.

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As usual, the answer is, "It depends"

by info In reply to Win2K3 SBS setup, routing ...

SBS Standard edition comes with a basic firewall based on the RRAS service and is usually better with a SonicWall/Netgear/PIX/Linksys type firewall/router in front of it. On the other hand, I have many installations with SBS Premium Edition which has ISA2004 as a firewall and they are perfectly protected. I suggest you see for the main types of configurations.

Steven Teiger [SBS-MVP]

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