Sunday, April 3, 2011

Firewalls, Me, And My Netbook Ariel

So lately I've been configuring firewalls. What ever for? Well, the company for which I work (Alarms GPS) has a network of servers that need to be protected from the outside. So, I configured the entire network for the entire 6 or so servers we have using a Fedora 11 server with Shorewall. Most of you don't really care, so you don't have to keep reading. Anyway, at first it was difficult trying to figure out  how to get the configuration started, but eventually I got it working and was able to also configure an IPSEC VPN using the Linux ipsec-tools (Racoon and setkey) with Wyless (a T-Mobile service provider). Either way, this past week in our brand new office in Fort Lauderdale, we setup a local firewall not only for security, but also to run a proxy server that allows us to block certain webpages, such as YouTube, Facebook, or the notorious Windows Live Messenger. The configuration was simple, and I got the proxy server running, but I haven't figured out how to get it to block sites yet. So I'll need to go back down there and finish it.

Right now I'm blogging from my new netbook (named Ariel). I'm waiting for the peeps to get off the Internet so I can install our own internet blocking system so we can limit the websites we go to, and even specify what times we can go on the Internet (e.g., we could block the Internet after 10:00 PM so people won't be surfing at midnight, etc). One appealing thing is that while a proxy server can block information, it can also help to speed up the Internet connection. Yes, really, it does speed up your Internet a whole lot. What it does is that it saves a "cache" of webpages on the server so that the next time you access that page, it can quickly provide the basic elements in record time, and the page loads instantly. So that's another reason to have a firewall here at the house, since we don't have the fastest Internet all the time....

When everybody is off the computers, hacking time begins! They are taking way too long, and my battery is getting lower and lower, and still I haven't started to get the thing setup. Seriously, is there no order in this place??? Either way, I'm going to go get my power adaptor to get the battery charging before I ruin my battery pack.

If you've read this far, I commend you for your valor. I assume you don't understand most of what I have written in the above paragraphs, but if you did (if you're a Linux geek or something), then great! Well, I've got to stop blogging now. So, till next time!

Jesse L. Zamora

1 comment:

  1. Don't completely underestimate us! While I may not recognize all the words I think I got the gist of what you are doing!