January 29, 2004

Linux and broadband: staying secure

Once you have your broadband connection up and running on your Linux machine, you may think that youre finished with configuration and can get on with
surfing the Internet. Unfortunately, this isnt the case. There are unscrupulous individuals out there who will take advantage of an unsecured machine,
no matter what OS it runs. With this in mind, this month well show you how to secure your machine from the most basic level.

If youve used so-called personal firewall software such as Norton Firewall or ZoneAlarm under Windows, youll be used to the quick and easy
configuration that most of these applications offer, and especially when it comes to locking intruders out. For the most part, you wont have it
anywhere near as easy where Linux is concerned, largely due to the big differences between the two operating systems.

The main difference is that Linux has support for firewalling built in at the operating system level, whereas with Windows its handled with additional
software. True, Windows XP has basic firewalling capability at the OS level with the Internet Connection Firewall (ICF), but thats basic even compared
to the third party applications weve already mentioned, let alone the complex way in which Linux handles things.

Link: pcplus.co.uk


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