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You can use these 10 tools for protecting your Linux server


Since Linux was founded in 1991, it has come to be an operating system of choice for developers across the world. As you can see from the table below, it is the second most used OS after Windows for applications. It is open source and therefore, security cautions must be applied in order to fully enjoy the benefits of the Linux platform.

Web clients’ OS family statistics
Symbian, S40


SourceDateMicrosoft Windows: 55.51% +0.09%Apple: 17.21% -0.04%Linux kernel based: 22.56% +0.09%Other 4.72% -0.14%
8/8.17VistaXPWP&RTOtherOS XiOSLinuxAndroidOther
Net ApplicationsJul 2014-0.458.21%-0.6033.68%-0.861.23%-0.9816.32%+0.190.85%0.00.08%-0.694.37%-0.1015.14%-0.011.10%+2.2715.28%-0.260.00%+1.593.83%
StatCounter Global StatsDec 2014+0.31%10.91%-0.51%33.52%-0.03%1.94%-0.35%8.14%+0.02%0.79%+0.01%0.12%-0.18%5.34%-0.08%11.91%-0.031.08%+0.91%20.62%-0.04%0.77%-0.08%4.86%
W3CounterSep 2014+1.1610.34%+1.2940.81%-1.252.64%-0.048.93%-0.00-0.00+0.686.64%+0.1110.55%+0.072.10%-0.629.87%-0.00-1.068.72%
AT InternetFeb 2014+0.43%8.00%-0.46%43.30%-0.26%4.70%-0.76%14.40%0.00.0-0.03%6.60%+0.53%12.70%0.00%1.00%0.56%8.20%0.00.03%0.40%
WikimediaAug 2014+0.436.82%+0.2524.75%-0.01%1.53%-0.08%5.32%+0.090.86%-0.010.03%-0.05%4.85%-1.0037.27%-0.06%1.16%+0.30%12.55%0.0%0%-0.050.34%

Operating systems usage January 2015 source: Statcounter and Wikipedia

1. iptables: 

This is a userspace command line program which is used to configure latest packet filtering rules in Linux. It’s mainly used by system administrators. Iptables is also used to configure Network Address Translation from the packet filter ruleset. Iptables package includes ip6tables too which is used for configuring IPv6 packet filter.

2. IPCop Firewall: 

This is an open source Linux firewall distribution and it provides a stable, secure, user friendly and highly configurable Firewall management system for users. It has a well-designed web interface to manage the firewall and it’s very useful for small business and local PCs. Its main features include its colour coded Web interface which allows you monitoring performance graphics for CPU, Memory and Disk, it supports multiple languages and offers a secure and easily implementable upgrade with add-on patches.

3. ClearOS: 

It’s a sleek firewall distribution which needs just two minutes to get installed. The process of installation is painless in this case and straightforward too. It’s a very usable firewall and it has plenty of useful features. It gives you a clean and simple way to add extra services to the network. It’s a powerful distribution and it offers all the tools which are necessary to run a network.

4. Shorewall: 

It’s built upon the iptables or ipchains netfilter system. It is used to create ipv4 firewall, ipv6 firewall, multiple ipv4 firewalls and multiple ipv6 firewalls. Shorewall is a gateway firewall configuration tool for GNU/Linux.

5. Ufw: 

Ufw or Uncomplicated Firewall is a program which manages netfilter firewall. It offers a command line interface and it tries not to become complicated ever.This firewall is very user-friendly too. It supports IPv6 and it’s used for status monitoring. It has an extensible framework which can integrated with applications too.

6. Vuurmuur: 

Vuurmuur is a powerful Linux firewall manager which is built to manage iptables rules for your server or network. It’s very user friendly for an administrator and no previous knowledge of iptables is also required to use Vuurmuur. It also supports IPv6 and it is used to shape traffic. It has anti-spoofing features too.

7. eBox Platform: 

This is not just a firewall distribution but it’s also a Linux Small Business Server. It’s based on Ubuntu Server 8.04 and installs eBox on an system with various components by adding a simple APT repository and certain packages. After installation is done, you can log into your eBox with your browser with the password which is provided during installation. It’s one of the biggest firewall distributions and its highly configurable too.

8. OpenBSD and PF: 

PF or packet filter is licensed under BSD and it’s developed on OpenBSD. PF firewall is installed by default on OpenBSD, FreeBSD and NetBSD. It’s used for packet filtering, traffic redirection, packet queuing and prioritising, packet tagging etc.

9. IPFire: 

This is a hardened Linux appliance distribution which is used as a firewall. It offers corporate-level network protection and it can be used by all – home users, large corporations, school networks and authority bodies.

10. SmoothWall: 

It’s an open source Linux firewall which can be configured easily and its Web based interface is known as WAM (Web Access manager). Smoothwall, distributed as a free version, is known as Smoothwall Express. It supports LAN, DMZ and wireless networks and real time content filtering too. It also supports HTTPS filtering, proxies, log viewing, monitoring firewall activities etc.

This list was compiled by Efytimes Network

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