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looking for a good secure linux


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#1 the_patriot11

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Posted 26 January 2010 - 01:56 AM

Alright you all, I am in the process of building a new computer that I plan ultimately, to turn into a linux firewall (though Ill probably use it to experiment with linux as well) in the near distant future. I am playing with which linux distro to use-I found one called IPcop that is supposed to be used for this reason. That being said though, I would also like it to do more then just be a firewall-that being its primary use but I also want to be able to surf the net with and experiment with different linux software. Ive always liked Mandriva or OpenSuSe, but would like something more secure then the firewall they come with. I want a powerful linux, user friendliness is not a must, though good driver support is, needs to be able to be used for a number of things, but needs to either come with a good firewall and support to do what I intend to do with it or have that software available for it. Im far from a linux expert, however I know enough to get my hands dirty and am looking to learn more advanced tools with it. oh, and I prefer using the KDE interface, though im familiar with the Gnome as well. thanks :D

Edited by the_patriot09, 26 January 2010 - 01:58 AM.

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

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#2 Andrew

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Posted 26 January 2010 - 01:39 PM

Whenever I hear the words "secure" and "Linux" I always think of SELinux, an extension to Linux released by the NSA. Several distros support it, including Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, and Hardened Gentoo. I've not used it myself, and it has something of a reputation for being complex. But it supposedly makes Linux secure enough for even the most top secret of the NSA's systems.

#3 cryptodan

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Posted 26 January 2010 - 04:26 PM

When I hear "Insert OS here" and "Secure" I think of the user's training and experiences and education.

#4 BlackSpyder

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Posted 26 January 2010 - 05:42 PM

Anytime you add a GUI to a system the amount of security is reduced. Which is why most home/business servers run "headless" and you Remote connect to them.

Debian Stable would be my suggestion or Ubuntu Server LTS. I think both are Gnome based (I can't remember Debian that well, I was going through a few Distros a month at that time) but KDE and Enlightenment are in the Repos for both. (Try enlightenment as a backup GUI, it's interesting)

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#5 the_patriot11

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Posted 26 January 2010 - 06:53 PM

When I hear "Insert OS here" and "Secure" I think of the user's training and experiences and education.


I know the ins and outs of windows security pretty well, just not to happy with it, which is why I want to go linux. thanks guys for the suggestions, Im gonna definetly give them all a try. :D

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

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#6 bigfatman

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Posted 22 February 2010 - 08:00 PM

you mentioned IPCop which is pretty good, a little old though and may not run on the latest hardware.
pfsense is bsd based and works very well, am using it now.
You could also look at astaro, they have a free version for home use which I have used. Its pretty amazing what they have done with it.
There is monowall and smoothwall too.

They are all good too. And very secure also.

you also mentioned wanting to use the machine/firewall to surf the internet but that won't be likely. Most linux/bsd firewalls are just that. There is no desktop. You web into them to configure them or from the command line.

Ideally, you would have some old pc that you could use. A linux based firewall doesn't take much to run. A Pentium III with 256M of ram and a 40G harddrive would be MORE than adequate.

#7 leejam

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Posted 22 February 2010 - 10:53 PM

IPCop is great, but it is just a firewall.

If you want something a bit more involved, try ClearOS It's a firewall, email server, web server, bells and whistles and all the candy. It does not have a gui, but it's a easy setup via remote.

Your average distro is capable of being hardened but it's a bit of a fiddle.

#8 the_patriot11

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 02:39 AM

looks interesting-however is it actually a linux distro? it says opensource but nothing else-like if its linux is it GNOME, KDE, etc.

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

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#9 BlackSpyder

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Posted 23 February 2010 - 06:25 PM

ClearOS is a server OS and not designed to be run on a end user terminal (so it uses neither Gnome or KDE). the Eula states it's a Linux distro (Not a fan of things that require an eula)

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#10 the_patriot11

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Posted 24 February 2010 - 03:40 AM

yeah not sure if Im looking at a server per say as more of just a firewall I can hide my windows computers behind maybe, possibly something to experiment with wine and winex as well.

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Primary system: Motherboard: ASUS M4A89GTD PRO/USB3, Processor: AMD Phenom II x4 945, Memory: 16 gigs of Patriot G2 DDR3 1600, Video: AMD Sapphire Nitro R9 380, Storage: 1 WD 500 gig HD, 1 Hitachi 500 gig HD, and Power supply: Coolermaster 750 watt, OS: Windows 10 64 bit. 

Media Center: Motherboard: Gigabyte mp61p-S3, Processor: AMD Athlon 64 x2 6000+, Memory: 6 gigs Patriot DDR2 800, Video: Gigabyte GeForce GT730, Storage: 500 gig Hitachi, PSU: Seasonic M1211 620W full modular, OS: Windows 10.

If I don't reply within 24 hours of your reply, feel free to send me a pm.





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