pfSense 2 Cookbook

pfSense 2 Cookbook
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Table of Contents
Sample Chapters
  • Harness the power of pfSense's core functionality
  • Get under the hood to see how pfSense performs load balancing and failover
  • Detailed examples of interfaces, firewall rules, NAT port-forwarding, VPN services, and much, much more!
  • Full of illustrations, diagrams, and tips for making the most of any pfSense implementation using clear step-by-step instructions for relevant and practical examples

Book Details

Language : English
Paperback : 252 pages [ 235mm x 191mm ]
Release Date : March 2011
ISBN : 1849514860
ISBN 13 : 9781849514866
Author(s) : Matt Williamson
Topics and Technologies : All Books, Networking and Servers, Cookbooks, Open Source

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Initial Configuration
Chapter 2: Essential Services
Chapter 3: General Configuration
Chapter 4: Virtual Private Networking
Chapter 5: Advanced Configuration
Chapter 6: Redundancy, Load Balancing, and Failover
Chapter 7: Services and Maintenance
Appendix A: Monitoring and Logging
Appendix B: Determining our Hardware Requirements
  • Chapter 1: Initial Configuration
    • Introduction
    • Applying basic settings in General Setup
    • Identifying and assigning interfaces
    • Configuring the WAN interface
    • Configuring the LAN interface
    • Configuring optional interfaces
    • Enabling the Secure Shell (SSH)
    • Generating authorized RSA keys
    • Configuring SSH RSA key authentication
    • Accessing the Secure Shell (SSH)
    • Chapter 2: Essential Services
      • Introduction
      • Configuring the DHCP server
      • Creating static DHCP mappings
      • Configuring the DHCP relay
      • Specifying alternate DNS servers
      • Configuring the DNS Forwarder
      • Configuring a standalone DHCP/DNS server
      • Configuring dynamic DNS
      • Chapter 3: General Configuration
        • Introduction
        • Creating an alias
        • Creating a NAT port forward rule
        • Creating a firewall rule
        • Creating a schedule
        • Remote desktop access, a complete example
          • Chapter 5: Advanced Configuration
            • Introduction
            • Creating a virtual IP
            • Configuring a 1:1 NAT rule
            • Creating an outbound NAT rule
            • Creating a gateway
            • Creating a static route
            • Configuring traffic-shaping (QoS, Quality of Service)
            • Bridging interfaces
            • Creating a virtual LAN
            • Creating a captive portal
            • Chapter 6: Redundancy, Load Balancing, and Failover
              • Introduction
              • Configuring multiple WAN interfaces
              • Configuring multi-WAN load balancing
              • Configuring multi-WAN failover
              • Configuring a web server load balancer
              • Configuring a web server failover
              • Configuring CARP firewall failover
              • Chapter 7: Services and Maintenance
                • Introduction
                • Enabling OLSR
                • Enabling PPPoE
                • Enabling RIP
                • Enabling SNMP
                • Enabling UPnP and NAT-PMP
                • Enabling OpenNTPD
                • Enabling Wake On LAN (WOL)
                • Enabling external logging (syslog server)
                • Using ping
                • Using traceroute
                • Backing up the configuration file
                • Restoring the configuration file
                • Configuring automatic configuration file backup
                • Updating pfSense firmware
                • Appendix A: Monitoring and Logging
                  • Introduction
                  • Customizing the Status Dashboard
                  • Monitoring current traffic
                  • Configuring SMTP e-mail notifications
                  • Viewing system logs
                  • Configuring an external syslog server
                  • Viewing RRD graphs
                  • Viewing DHCP leases
                  • Managing services
                  • Monitoring the packet filter with pfInfo
                  • Monitoring traffic with pfTop
                  • Monitoring system activity

                    Matt Williamson

                    Matt Williamson is the founder of Blue Key Consulting – a computer systems design and development firm located in the New York City area. Before forming his consulting business, Matt developed software for a number of companies in the insurance and financial research industries. A long-time user of pfSense, Matt has incorporated pfSense in a number of roles throughout a variety of his own systems and those of his clients. His personal website and blog can be found at
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                    Sample chapters

                    You can view our sample chapters and prefaces of this title on PacktLib or download sample chapters in PDF format.

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                    What you will learn from this book

                    • Determine your deployment scenario, hardware/throughput/interface requirements, form-factor, and which platform version of pfSense is right for you
                    • Secure remote access using the SSH and/or HTTPS protocols
                    • Add, assign, and configure network interfaces
                    • Configure essential networking services (such as DHCP, DNS, Dynamic DNS)
                    • Create aliases, firewall rules, NAT port-forward rules, and rule schedules
                    • Enable external Remote Desktop Access to an internal machine, following a complete example of the core pfSense functionality
                    • Configure the PPTP, IPSec, L2TP, and/or OpenVPN services
                    • Create virtual IPs, a virtual LAN, 1:1 and outbound NAT rules, gateways, static routes, and bridged interfaces
                    • Configure traffic-shaping and Quality of Service (QoS)
                    • Create multiple WAN interfaces in load-balanced or failover configurations
                    • Configure firewall redundancy with a CARP firewall failover
                    • Configure external logging with syslog
                    • Use a variety of built-in networking tools such as Ping and traceroute
                    • Configuration backup/restoration and automatic configuration-file backup
                    • Update the pfSense firmware
                    • Monitor and view all sorts of system and feature statuses/logs using RRD graphs and status monitoring tools

                    In Detail

                    pfSense is an open source distribution of FreeBSD-based firewall that provides a platform for flexible and powerful routing and firewalling. The versatility of pfSense presents us with a wide array of configuration options, which makes determining requirements a little more difficult and a lot more important, compared to other offerings. Through this book you will see that pfSense offers numerous alternatives to fit any environment's security needs.

                    pfSense 2.0 Cookbook is the first and only book to explore all the features of pfSense, including those released in the latest 2.0 version. With the help of step-by-step instructions and detailed screenshots of the pfSense interface you will be able to configure every general and advanced feature from creating a firewall rule to configuring multi-WAN failover. Each recipe includes tips and offers advice on variations of the topic or references to other related recipes and additional information that can be found from other sources.

                    pfSense 2.0 Cookbook covers the gamut of available features and functionality. The first three chapters will take you from a non-existent system to a basic pfSense firewall. The next chapter focuses on configuring any number of the VPN services available, a very important and sought-after feature for anyone implementing a firewall. The following two chapters describe how to configure the most advanced features available in pfSense; features that may only be relevant to the most experienced network admins. Chapter 7 is dedicated to understanding and configuring the "grab-bag" of features that are available in pfSense, but are often stand-alone options and unrelated to each other. The first appendix explains how to use the status monitoring tools available for many of the features. The second appendix wraps up with helping you to decide how and where pfSense may be incorporated into your system and what type of hardware is required based on your throughput needs.

                    Over 70 simple but incredibly effective recipes for taking control of pfSense


                    This book is written in a cookbook style. Each chapter consists of recipes, each of which is composed of step-by-step instructions to complete a particular task. Each recipe also includes tips, alternatives, and references to other recipes or appropriate external sources. The book can be explored chapter by chapter or in no particular order.

                    Who this book is for

                    This book is intended for all levels of network administrators. If you are an advanced user of pfSense, then you can flip to a particular recipe and quickly accomplish the task at hand, while if you are new to pfSense, you can read chapter by chapter and learn all of the features of the system from the ground up.

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