[SATLUG] Home network

Samuel Leon satlug at net153.net
Wed Apr 2 13:13:53 CDT 2008

Justin Burdette wrote:
> I finally decided it was time to upgrade my home network. I'm adding in
> wifi, and I'm also buying a couple of small form factor Dell units (P3) to
> run as firewall, web server, DHCP, etc...
> I'm trying to figure out what distro would be the best for these
> applications. What I'd prefer is something that I can log into from my main
> PC (using OpenSUSE 10.3, probably through rdesktop or something like it) as
> these machines won't have a monitor/keyboard/mouse attached. I'd like to be
> able to run a basic GUI...no need for GNOME or KDE, but will probably go
> with Fluxbox.
> My next question, which I shouldn't even have to ask, but I haven't done
> mixed networks in so long that I've forgotten how. What I would like to do
> is run all of my wired units with static IP addresses and have DHCP assign
> addresses for wifi connections and wired machines that I'm working on for
> customers. The Linksys I have doesn't seem to like static IPs when its DHCP
> is enabled...it was set to assign in the range and I
> couldn't do anything with my static IP of Is there an easy way
> to set this up on a Linux DHCP server?
> Last question...I presume the firewall box should do strictly that, no DHCP,
> Apache, FTP server, etc...correct? A P3 system with enough RAM and swap
> should be able to handle the other services, yes?
> Thanks again...always great to have a group of people to bounce ideas around
> with. Maybe next time I can make it to the meeting, too!
> Justin

I have been hooked on smoothwall for about 5 years now:


Version 3.0 is out now but I am still using version 2 as it has more 
mods and requires less resources.  You really only need a 300mhz 256mb 
box to run this.  The advantage I see of smoothwall over a linksys is 
you just have more power to play with.  You can do full content 
filtering/blocking for web and email, (linksys can do that too but in a 
much more simple manor).  Easily have 4 nics and 4 separate networks. 
The Squid web caching is nice and a FULL featured QOS/traffic shaping 
mod is also nice.  And you also have huge choice of all kinds of traffic 
and content monitoring services.  Yes you could install a traditional os 
and install all of these programs your self but then you have to figure 
out how to interface it all into a web configuration page unless you 
want to do everything from ssh but then you cant have pretty web based 
traffic graphs and stuff.

The linksys are nice, but I just can't separate myself from all the 
power that I have with a full fledged firewall distro.


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