Dorking around with open source router/gateway/firewall stuff

Just for yucks I am using a linux box in my house as gateway for all the devices in my house, I just want to be able to see what is going on at the network level and do a little more finegrained control.

I considered using “dd-wrt”: but it is not keeping up with router releases — it is not available for any of the routers on the shelf at best buy locally, for instance. and these router boxes are kind of a mess anyway, super limited on ram and storage, which constrains what I can do. i can easily build a cheap linux box with ethernet in, wifi out. the only advantage the router boxes have are the 4+ onboard wired ethernet ports. but wired ethernet seems to be going the way of the dodo in the home.

There are a ton of code bases to choose from. Here are some that seemed notable

* “untangle”: commercial product but also some open source light version which they try to hide on their site. which makes me think the open source thing is 99% of the commercial thing. nice UI. They obviously don’t really want to support people like me tho, probably will steer away from this.
* “clearOS”: similar but looks even more open-sourcy, they say the right things about supporting open source community.
* “ipfire”: very open sourcy and modern (git repositories for instance). git repositories seem active
* “zeroshell”: old school open source (not git based for instance), looks a little rough around the edges, but very complete.
* “devil linux”: boots off cd/usb so easy to try but doesn’t seem to have the network depth of the previous choices

i’ll probably start with an ipfire trial. unless someone has a better idea.

3 thoughts to “Dorking around with open source router/gateway/firewall stuff”

  1. Bob, I’ve got pretty much that same board, only with wifi instead of the 2nd LAN port. I’ll look at pfsense in addition to ipfire. Pfsense looks nice.

    Bruce thanks for the tip, I had stumbled across that too, asus seems to be embracing the DIY community. Ultimately tho I think I want the power of my own general purpose box.

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