pfSense

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pfSense
Pfsense logo.png
pfsense 2.1.5 screenshot
Developer Electric Sheep Fencing, LLC
OS family FreeBSD (10.1-RELEASE)
Working state Current
Source model Open source
Latest release 2.2.4 / July 27, 2015 (2015-07-27)
Platforms Intel x86, AMD64
Kernel type Monolithic kernel
License ESF (6-clause BSD-alike License)[1]
Official website www.pfsense.org

pfSense is an open source firewall/router computer software distribution based on FreeBSD.[2][3][4] It is installed on a physical computer or a virtual machine to make a dedicated firewall/router for a network and is noted for its reliability[5] and offering features often only found in expensive commercial firewalls.[6][7] It can be configured and upgraded through a web-based interface, and requires no knowledge of the underlying FreeBSD system to manage.[6][8] pfSense is commonly deployed as a perimeter firewall, router, wireless access point, DHCP server, DNS server, and as a VPN endpoint. pfSense supports installation of 3rd party packages like Snort or Squid through its Package Manager.

Name[edit]

The name was derived from the fact that it helps make the stateful packet-filtering tool PF (which acts as a firewall, packet filter, and routing service on many BSD and Unix platforms) make more sense to non-technical users.[9]

History[edit]

The pfSense project started in 2004 as a fork of the m0n0wall project by Chris Buechler and Scott Ullrich.[10] From the beginning, it focused on full PC installations, as opposed to m0n0wall's focus on embedded hardware. However, pfSense is also available as an embedded image for CompactFlash-based installations. Version 1.0 of the software was released on October 4, 2006.[11] Version 2.0 was released on September 17, 2011.[12] Version 2.1 was released on September 15, 2013[13] and version 2.2 was released January 23, 2015.[14][15]

Version history[edit]

Features[edit]

Install, update, packages, management
  • Live CD, update, NanoBSD/embedded, virtual machine, and USB installers available
  • Packaged support/push-button installer for extensions, including the Squid proxy server, the Snort intrusion prevention/detection system, ntop, the HAVP antivirus package, IP address blocklist'
  • Multi-language
  • Console, web-based GUI, SSH (if enabled) and serial management
  • RRD graphs reporting
  • Traffic shaping and filtering
  • Real-time information using Ajax
Functionality and connectivity
Firewall and routing
  • Stateful firewall
  • Network Address Translation
  • Filtering by source/destination IP address, protocol, OS/network fingerprinting
  • Flexible routing
  • Per-rule configurable logging and per-rule limiters (IP addresses, connections, states, new connections, state types), Layer 7 protocol inspection, policy filtering (or packet marking), TCP flag state filtering, scheduling, gateway
  • Packet scrubbing
  • Layer 2/bridging capable
  • State table "up to several hundred thousand" states (1 KB RAM per state approx)
  • State table algorithms customizable including low latency and low-dropout
Packages support

Packages available as "push button installs" among others:

Hardware[edit]

pfSense 2.x has low minimum system requirements (for example 256 MB RAM and 500 MHz CPU)[34] and can be installed on hardware with x86 or x86-64 architecture. It is also available for embedded system hardware using Compact Flash or SD cards. pfSense also supports virtualized installation.

See also[edit]

BSD based:
Linux based:

References[edit]

  1. ^ "pfSense Overview". www.pfsense.org. Electric Sheep Fencing LLC. Retrieved 28 June 2015. 
  2. ^ "You should be running a pfSense firewall". InfoWorld. 22 December 2014. Retrieved 27 July 2015. 
  3. ^ "Enterprises cut costs with open-source routers". Network World. 9 June 2009. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  4. ^ "Multiple Vulnerabilities Patched in pfSense". Security Week. 26 March 2015. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 
  5. ^ Danen, Vincent (December 7, 2009). "DIY pfSense firewall system beats others for features, reliability, and security". TechRepublic. If you want a high-availability and highly reliable firewall, pfSense is definitely something to seriously consider 
  6. ^ a b Miller, Sloan (June 26, 2008). "Configure a professional firewall using pfSense". Free Software Magazine (22). No experience is needed with FreeBSD or GNU/Linux to install and run pfSense 
  7. ^ Stahie, Silviu (April 7, 2014). "pfSense 2.1.1 Firewall Distro Can Replace Any Commercial Alternative". Softpedia. Firewall Distro Can Replace Any Commercial Alternative 
  8. ^ "You should be running pfsense" - Paul Venezia, InfoWorld http://www.infoworld.com/article/2861574/network-security/you-should-be-running-pfsense-firewall.html
  9. ^ Buechler, Chris (June 21, 2007). "So what does pfSense stand for/mean, anyway?". pfSense Digest. 
  10. ^ "pfSense Open Source Firewall Distribution - History". 
  11. ^ a b Ullrich, Scott (October 13, 2006). "1.0-RELEASED!". pfSense Digest. 
  12. ^ a b Buechler, Chris (September 17, 2011). "2.0-RELEASED!". pfSense Digest. 
  13. ^ a b Buechler, Chris (September 15, 2013). "pfSense 2.1-RELEASE now available!". pfSense Digest. 
  14. ^ a b Buechler, Chris (January 23, 2015). "2.2 Release now available!". pfSense Digest. 
  15. ^ a b http://distrowatch.com/table.php?distribution=pfsense
  16. ^ Ullrich, Scott (October 29, 2006). "1.0.1-RELEASED!". pfSense Digest. 
  17. ^ Ullrich, Scott (April 29, 2007). "1.2-BETA-1 released!". pfSense Digest. 
  18. ^ Buechler, Chris (February 25, 2008). "1.2 Release Available!". pfSense Digest. 
  19. ^ Buechler, Chris (December 26, 2008). "pfSense 1.2.1 released!". pfSense Digest. 
  20. ^ Buechler, Chris (January 9, 2009). "pfSense 1.2.2 released!". pfSense Digest. 
  21. ^ Buechler, Chris (December 10, 2009). "pfSense 1.2.3 released!". pfSense Digest. 
  22. ^ Buechler, Chris (December 20, 2011). "2.0.1 release now available!". pfSense Digest. 
  23. ^ Buechler, Chris (December 21, 2012). "2.0.2 release now available!". pfSense Digest. 
  24. ^ Buechler, Chris (April 15, 2013). "2.0.3 release now available!". pfSense Digest. 
  25. ^ Thompson, Jim (April 4, 2014). "2.1.1-RELEASE now available". pfSense Digest. 
  26. ^ Thompson, Jim (April 10, 2014). "2.1.2 Release Now available". pfSense Digest. 
  27. ^ Dillard, Jared (May 2, 2014). "2.1.3 RELEASE Now available". pfSense Digest. 
  28. ^ Dillard, Jared (June 25, 2014). "2.1.4 RELEASE Now available". pfSense Digest. 
  29. ^ Dillard, Jared (August 27, 2014). "2.1.5 RELEASE Now available". pfSense Digest. 
  30. ^ Buechler, Chris (March 17, 2015). "2.2.1 RELEASE Now available". pfSense Digest. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  31. ^ Buechler, Chris (April 15, 2015). "2.2.2 RELEASE Now available!". pfSense Digest. Retrieved 15 April 2015. 
  32. ^ Buechler, Chris (June 25, 2015). "2.2.3 RELEASE Now available!". pfSense Digest. Retrieved 7 July 2015. 
  33. ^ Buechler, Chris (July 27, 2015). "2.2.4 RELEASE Now available!". pfSense Digest. Retrieved 27 July 2015. 
  34. ^ "Hardware". Electric Sheep Fencing LLC. Retrieved 5 August 2015. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]