FreeNAS 0.686.1 (stable) released

FreeNAS LogoVolker Teile from the FreeNAS team has announced today that FreeNAS 0.686.1 stable has been released. The following changes and additions have been made:

Majors changes:

  • Upgrade Samba to 3.0.28.
  • Add attributes ‘Guest account’ and ‘Null passwords’ to ‘Samba: Settings’ advanced section in WebGUI.
  • Enhance WebGUI + rc-script to define additional group memberships for user accounts.
  • Replace uShare UPnP Mediaserver with MediaTomb 0.10.0. This has been done because ushare’s latest version fails to build on FreeBSD, also new version requires external libs for DLNA support which is not ported to FreeBSD right at the moment. You have to reconfigure the UPnP service to get working properly. XBox 360 is not supported.
  • Increase mfsroot size to 54mb for embedded version. So hopefully the OS has enough memory for logfiles,… Especially with Samba tbd files, which increases rapidely with a huge number of users accessing the system.
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DesktopBSD – Unix for the masses

Reptiler reports:

Currently I’m playing around with DesktopBSD. This actually is because I’m anyway playing with Xen, so I decided to use the time I spend on Xen to try out a few more systems. One of those is DesktopBSD, a version of FreeBSD customized for desktop-use. Thus it offers what we are used to from many Linux-distros today, ease of use and installation, automatic hardware-detection and -setup, KDE, a nice package-manager etc.
By the way, I’m not using the latest version, which is 1.6. The version I use is 1.6RC2, just because I had the image on DVD anyway. But I guess it’s recent enough for this.

As said, DesktopBSD is based on FreeBSD, which becomes quite obvious when updating packages, because those come directly from the FreeBSD-mirrors.

One thing I personally really like is the function to check the installed software for security-holes. This is simply done by comparing the list of installed software with one (or more, I don’t know the internals of those function yet) of those websites where they keep track of that kind of information. The gathered information then can be seen in the package-manager, which I think is a really nice function.

[...]

Overall DesktopBSD leaves a good impression after the first few tests. For those who always wanted to try BSD this might be an option worth considering.

Read the whole article on Nuxified.org

7 Linux/BSD firewalls reviewed (incl pfSense & m0n0wall)

Wayne Richardson reviewed in total 7 different Linux and BSD firewalls back in Nov 2007 (ClarckConnect, Endian, Gibraltar, IPCop, m0n0wall, pfSense, SmoothWall) and compared them on basis of the following categories: setup, web-gui, extensibility and speed.

Since this is a FreeBSD blog I’ll just quote (with his kind permission) what he wrote about pfSense and m0n0wall. If you’re interested in the whole article and want to see how the BSD firewalls compare to Linux firewall, please refer to Wayne’s article.

pfSense was named the best firewall with a 95% pass rate; m0nowall received a 77% mark and was the smallest of the bunch.
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In the spotlight: HamFreeSBIE

Ham amateur radioHamFreeSBIE is a live CD based on FreeSBIE and contains utilities specifically tailored to fit the needs of amateur radio operators. HamFreeSBIE is developed and maintained since February 2007 by Diane Bruce, a well-known FreeBSD developer.

Diane has created a presentation that gives a great introduction into the various available ham utilities (incl screenshots & descriptions). She has also assisted in the creation of the Hamradio ports category and has become the maintainer of over 20 of the hamradio ports.

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DesktopBSD 1.6 reviewed

raiden.net has a pretty nice review of the latest version of DesktopBSD, 1.6

DesktopBSD logoDesktopBSD, a derivative of Freebsd designed for desktop use, has come a long way since its early inception back in late 2005. Originally created as a way to bring the power of Freebsd as a desktop OS to new users, it has now blossomed into a desktop experience even the most hardened geek, or greenest novice can love. Back in April of last year we reviewed version 1.3 and gave it great marks overall, but with some need for improvement. So how does version 1.6 stack up against its predecessor? Has it improved any? Let’s find out.

…. cont.

and he concludes the article with:

So how do I rate DesktopBSD 1.6? I’d say it’s a lot better than previous versions. It strikes just the right balance between being friendly to the new user, and yet powerful and geek enough to satisfy the more seasoned user. The developers did a good job this time around and I think they should pat themselves on the back. There’s still room for improvement, but isn’t that true with any distro? But it’s not improvements to make it good, or even great. It’s already great. The next step up will be to make it exceptional. A hard rung to climb, but not if you’re determined to be the best there is out there, and DesktopBSD is easily on its way towards that goal!

The review can be read in its entirety here.

m0n0wall, an open source lightweight firewall

M0n0wall logo Jeff Goldman has done an interview with Manual Kasper, the creator of m0n0wall. Here it is: Manuel Kasper developed the embedded firewall software package m0n0wall back in 2002, he says, while experimenting with embedded x86-based computers.

Having just succeeded at stripping down FreeBSD enough to make it run on a Soekris net4501 board… and deploying it for use as a home firewall/NAT router, I wanted to go one step further, I wanted a nice, web-based interface to configure it, just like the commercial firewall boxes.

Kasper says he chose the name m0n0wall simply because “Mono” was his nickname in school.

I’m not sure why I replaced the o’s for zeros—perhaps because all domain names with normal o’s were already taken—and when I look at it now, it seems a bit silly/’31337′—but it has become a trademark anyway,

he says. And what started as a home project to make it easier to configure FreeBSD on the Soekris net4501 has grown rapidly.

At some point, I decided that it had become good enough that other people might want to have a look at it, so I posted a note about the first version on a mailing list,” Kasper says. “The interest in the project turned out to be big, so I created a dedicated web page and started releasing new versions with new features every few weeks.

Looking at the solution as a whole, Kasper says the best way to explain m0n0wall’s strengths is to look at the stability and reliability of FreeBSD.

m0n0wall, owing to the fact that it’s based on FreeBSD, inherits those qualities

Read the whole interview on isp-planet.com

Note: Manuel Kasper’s embedded FreeBSD-based firewall software package is especially attractive to WISPs and small ISPs.

m0n0wall-CMI project


Stumbled upon m0n0wall-CMI today, a web-based centralised management interface to manage m0n0wall devices remotely.

It’s the result of an internal needs inside the TI Automotive firm that is now given to open source community; This work is licensed under the BSD license.
This project is developed in PHP5 Oriented Object and packaged together with a developer documentation to ease the work of someone who would like to contribute to the code.

Current features:

    m0n0wall-CMI

  • Centralized interface to manage m0n0wall devices
  • m0n0wall version supported: 1.231;
  • Fetch/Restore m0n0wall configuration through HTTPS;
  • Manage Users/Groups;
  • Manage Aliases of m0n0wall;
  • Manage Global aliases common to all m0n0wall devices managed;
  • Manage Interfaces and VLANs;
  • Manage Firewall rules;
  • Manage NAT entries;
  • Manage ProxyARP;
  • Manage Static Routes;
  • Manage Syslog and SNMP settings;
  • Dump XML configuration from interface;
  • Import existing m0n0wall devices into database;

Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? Especially if you administer a couple of m0n0wall firewalls remotely. Check out the online demo version