List of router and firewall distributions

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

This is a list of router and firewall distributions, which are operating systems designed for use as routers and/or firewalls.

Name Status Type Architecture Min hardware requirements License Cost Description
Alpine Linux Active Linux distribution x86, x86-64, ARM Open source Free Linux distribution running from a RAM drive. Its original target was small appliances like routers, VPN gateways, or embedded x86 devices. However, it supports hosting other Linux guest OSes under LXC control, making it an attractive hosting solution as well. Uses Busybox and musl.
ClearOS Active Red Hat Enterprise Linux derivative x86, x86-64 GPL and others Free or paid registration Router and firewall for SMBs with network, gateway and server modules accessed through WebConfig. A paid registration for extra online services is available, but not necessary for operation of the product.
Cumulus Linux Active Debian derivative ? Free with registration, or paid subscription. Open source Linux based networking operating system for bare metal switches.
DD-WRT Active Linux distribution MIPS, x86, ARM ? Free or paid registration for x86 Embedded Linux firmware distribution available on a variety of wireless routers.
Endian Firewall Active Linux distribution x86-64 ? Free (PC) or hardware version UTM distribution with routing, firewall, anti-spam and anti-virus for web, FTP and e-mail, OpenVPN, IPsec, captive portal functionality, and captive portal (missing in community version). Endian Firewall Community (EFW) is a complete version for x86. The anti-virus for EFW is Sophos or ClamAV. The intrusion protection is Snort.
fli4l Active Linux distribution x86, x86-64 GPL (Free software) Free Linux-based router project supporting a large set of layer-1 technologies (e.g. Ethernet LAN, Wireless LAN, ISDN, DSL, UMTS), layer-3 protocols and functionality (IPv4, IPv6, stateful packet filter), and various network-related functionality (e.g. Bridging, Bonding, VLANs; DNS, DHCPv4, DHCPv6, IPv6 RA; PPP (client+server), PPTP (client+server), Multilink PPP, OpenVPN, 6in4 tunneling; support for various DynDNS clients, NTP time synchronization). It is easily extendable by a large number of additional packages.
floppyfw Unmaintained Linux distribution x86 ? Free Single-floppy router with Linux's advanced firewall capabilities.
FRRouting Active GPL2 Free Range Routing or FRRouting or FRR is a network routing software suite running on Unix-like platforms, particularly Linux, Solaris, OpenBSD, FreeBSD and NetBSD.
Gargoyle Active Linux distribution MIPS, x86-64 A free OpenWrt-based Linux distribution for a range of Broadcom and Atheros chipset based wireless routers.
Global Technology Associates, Inc. Discontinued FreeBSD derivative x86 ? Free (limited functionality) or paid GB-OS firewall and UTM appliance.
IPFire Active Linux distribution x86, x86-64, ARM RAM : 1 GB
Storage : 4 GB
GPLv3 Free IPFire is a hardened Open Source Linux distribution that primarily performs as a Router and a Firewall; a standalone firewall system with a web-based management console for configuration.
Kerio Control Active Linux x86-64 Proprietary Paid hardware or virtual appliance Router/firewall distribution.
LEAF Project Active Linux distribution x86 ? Free linux Embedded Appliance Framework; a customizable embedded Linux network appliance used as an Internet gateway, router, firewall, and wireless access point.
LibreCMC Active Linux-libre MIPS GPLv2 Free Linux-libre distribution for computers with minimal resources, such as the Ben NanoNote, ath9k-based Wi-Fi routers, and other hardware with emphasis on free software. Based on OpenWrt, the project's goal is to aim for compliance with the GNU Free System Distribution Guidelines (GNU FSDG) and ensure that the project continues to meet these requirements set forth by the Free Software Foundation (FSF). LibreCMC does not support ac (Wi-Fi 5) or ax (Wi-Fi 6) due to a lack of free chipsets.
m0n0wall Discontinued FreeBSD derivative x86 ? Free Development ended 2015-02-15. Small web-administrative router/firewall/VPN (IPsec/PPTP only; no OpenVPN) distribution. m0n0wall was forked to shortly after Manuel Kasper announced end of development for m0n0wall.
Openwall Active Linux x86, x86-64 ? Free GNU/*/Linux (or Owl for short) is a small security-enhanced Linux distribution for servers, appliances, and virtual appliances. Effectively at end of life.
OpenWrt Active Linux x86, x86-64, MIPS, ARM, PowerPC, AVR32, CRIS, m68k, SPARC, SuperH, Ubicom32, etc. GPL V2 Free Linux distribution with a focus on CPE-routers and similar embedded devices. Its comprehensive build system is based on a heavily modified uClibc#Buildroot and suitable for embedded systems in general.
OPNsense Active FreeBSD derivative, fork of pfSense x86-64 FreeBSD License Free or paid Forward caching proxy, traffic shaping, intrusion detection, two-factor authentication, IPsec and OpenVPN[1]
pfSense Active FreeBSD derivative, fork of m0n0wall x86-64, ARM Closed & Open source licenses Free as PfSense CE or paid on Netgate Devices as PfSense Plus Customized distribution tailored for use as a firewall, router, DHCP server, gateway, OpenVPN, IPsec, proxy and anti-virus (Snort).
Smoothwall Active (Closed Source) Linux distribution x86 Closed & Open source licenses Free or paid Router/firewall distribution with a web interface and light terminal.
Sophos Active Linux derivative x86-64 ? Free, Paid or hardware/virtual appliance UTM - offers free home use for up to 50 clients. Provides HTTP/S web filtering, spam filtering, antivirus (web and email), VPN (PPTP and a HTML5 agentless VPN) and Point-to-point links between UTM and other devices via IPSec and SSL-VPN. Formerly Astaro Security Gateway.[2]
Tomato Firmware Discontinued Linux distribution Broadcom only: MIPS, ARM ? Free Free HyperWRT-based, Linux core firmware distribution for many Broadcom-based wireless routers, originally Linksys WRT54G. Now being ported to ARM-based consumer routers.[3]
Vyatta Discontinued Linux distribution x86, x86-64 ? Paid Enterprise-class router, firewall, VPN, intrusion protection and more delivered as a complete network operating system that runs on x86 hardware or in XenServer, VMware or Hyper-V to provide vFirewall, vRouter network virtualization functionality.
VyOS Active Linux distribution x86, x86-64 RAM : 512MB
Storage : 2GB
GPL v2 Free "snapshot" builds or self-compiled. Stable builds require subscription Based on Vyatta. After Brocade halted development of Vyatta CE (free edition) in favor of the subscription edition, this project aims to keep open source development going. But have switched to a paid subscription model too.
Windows RRAS Active Windows add-in feature x86, x86-64 ? Requires prerequisite Windows OS license Windows Routing and Remote Access Service is a feature that can be installed on Windows (mainly server) Operating Systems, and can perform routing functions, NAT, and implement firewall rules.
Zentyal (formerly eBox Platform) Active Ubuntu derivative x86, x86-64 Open source Free with paid services available Zentyal is an open-source router/firewall and small business server.
Zeroshell Discontinued Linux distribution x86, ARM GPL V2 Free (contribution required for some graphing functions) Web-administrative router/firewall live CD with QoS features. It is also able to act as a Wi-Fi access point with advanced features such as the multiple SSID and 802.1x RADIUS authentication. Zeroshell supports VLAN trunking (802.1q), bridging, WAN load balancing, and fail-over features.

See also[edit]



  1. ^ " OPNsense". DistroWatch. November 21, 2017.
  2. ^ "Next-Gen Firewall | Network UTM Firewall Appliances | Sophos NGFW". Retrieved 2015-07-31.
  3. ^ "Tomato for ARM routers". 28 February 2014. Retrieved 2015-07-31.