Elron's NT firewall has it covered

With its CommandView Firewall for NT, Elron Software Inc. offers a flexible, easytoconfigure weapon in your arsenal against hackers

With its CommandView Firewall for NT, Elron Software Inc. offers a flexible, easy-to-configure weapon in your arsenal against hackers. CommandView is a solid, software-based firewall that can be easily integrated into existing firewalled networks, or it can be used as a standalone product to protect a small- to mid-size agency's PCs and workstations. CommandView can do a lot more, too. Besides being just a full-featured firewall, it's also a remote-access solution for supporting 100 to 1,000 network clients.

Most people think that a firewall is all that's needed to stave off malicious network attacks. A firewall is actually an agency's third line of defense. The first defense is a thorough understanding of the agency's network and any potential vulnerabilities; the second is a router with an appropriately restrictive access control list (ACL); and the third is a well-understood, properly installed and properly configured firewall.

First- and second-generation firewalls are akin to a router with an ACL or a proxy-based firewall, respectively. However, these don't offer the extensive security provided by the Elron product or others like it that use the same architecture.

Elron's firewall is based on third-generation Stateful Multi-layer Inspection (SMLI) technology. SMLI-based firewalls monitor almost all the layers of a network connection and record information about who initiated the connection. If the connection was initiated from inside the protected network, the firewall will allow it to continue.

The Elron firewall isn't as easy to install and configure as, say, a hardware firewall like SonicWALL's products, but it is easier to configure than Check Point Software Tech-nol-ogies Ltd.'s FireWall-1 software-based firewall.

Starting with the installation, I liked the fact that I didn't have to worry about first hardening the operating system against attack before installation — a requirement of some firewall solutions.

Instead, I was able to get the firewall up and running on a newly installed Microsoft Corp. Windows NT 4 Server (updated with a minimum of Service Pack 3), provided that it was outfitted with at least two network interface cards. Putting in a third NIC would have allowed me to set up a "demilitarized zone" for a publicly accessible resource such as a World Wide Web server.

Configuring the Elron firewall was straightforward. You use a Windows-based management client, which can be set up on the firewall itself or on another Windows-based machine. The software comes pre- configured to allow protected access to the Internet for several common user services, such as e-mail and Web browsing. An Express Configuration Wizard set up these generic user services after asking me some simple questions. All and all, completing the initial user services configuration was relatively painless.

However, I had problems configuring Network Address Translation (NAT) software and a custom user service that required special ports in the server software to be opened. But for the most part, Elron's support for more than a hundred applications out of the box should make for a straightforward configuration of standard user services such as Real-Audio, file transfer protocol or America Online access.

Although the firewall software was relatively easy to install and configure, I would have liked more information in the documentation on setting up the firewall itself, as well as the NAT portion of the software. However, what the package lacks in documentation it makes up for in features and robustness. One of the outstanding parts of the package is logging and trap capability.

The logging portion of the management client is extensive. The log can contain critical events, noncritical events or a mix of anything in between, including informational and debug events. Real-time and e-mail notification of events, a must for this type of product, are also supported. Attacking this bridge-based firewall with common hacker tools such as Insecure.Org's nmap port-scanning tools proved fruitless. The firewall was secure against any attack that I launched against it.

Bottom line: If you're looking for a fully functional firewall for IP- and IPX-based networks with additional capabilities, such as NAT and virtual private networking, and an excellent logging feature, then Elron's NT software-based firewall is worth a look.

Garza is a freelance writer and a senior IT network engineer in Silicon Valley.

NEXT STORY: Microsoft to delay security patch

X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.