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03 March 2010, 15:07

CeBIT 2010: IPFire open source firewall

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The H spoke with IPFire's Project Leader and Developer Michael Tremer at this year's CeBIT IT trade show in Hannover, Germany about his open source firewall. IPFire is a Linux distribution that can be booted from a CD or USB drive, or installed to a computer's hard disk drive.

Tremer says that, over the recent months, interest in IPFire as an alternative to other commercial and open source firewalls has been consistently on the rise. He believes that this is due to the security minded developers and consistent updates. The next version of IPFire, version 3.0, is already in development and will feature a new stable kernel with long term support and several new features.

Zoom IPFire Project Leader & Developer Michael Tremer
The highly customisable firewall features a built-in custom packet manager, called Pakfire, that allows users to easily expand IPFire's functionality through a number of add-ons. Available add-ons include voice over IP packages, such as Teamspeak, file servers using the Samba add-on and security tools like Guardian or Tripwire. The 2.5 branch of IPFire conceptually separates a network into four coloured zones – red for the internet, orange for the DMZ, blue for wireless clients and green for trusted clients. Screenshots of the IPFire web-based interface are available online.

Tremer also says that his project is currently seeking donations from its users to pay for the project's hosting, development and CeBIT costs. Developers interested in joining the project are also welcome and are asked to report any bugs they encounter or to propose new features using the project's bugtracker page.

The latest stable release of IPFIre is version 2.5 (Core 36) from last month. Version 3.0 is currently in development and is available as a first alpha. IPFire is available to download from the project's web site and an installation guide is also provided. IPFire is released under version 3 of the GNU General Public License (GPLv3).

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