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Smoothwall Backup?


DaBeach
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Any recommendations for backing up a Smoothwall system. I am currently imaging the drive and its 4 partitions with Drive Snapshot.

Any issues I should be aware of doing backups this way?

Another question... Would it be possible to FTP into Smoothwall and simply copy all files and directories to another system and would it then be possible to restore the system by copying them all back?

Edited by DaBeach
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I am in the process of installing Smoothwall on one of my VMs, I will let you know how you can back it up as soon as I am finished with the installation.

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The installation took sometime to finish and besides I ran into some difficulties during the network cards detection process. But now that it is up and running, there are 4 options for you to back up smoothwall.

1. Install a Floppy drive in your system and use a floppy disk to save the current configuration.

2. Create an image of your current hard drive and use it to reimage another hard drive.

3. Instead of using FTP, you can SSH into smoothwall, but the SSH service will need to be set up on Smoothwall, before you can SSH into it.

4. Or you can install Smoothwall on a VM and make a copy of the Virtual HDD.

Hope this helps.

Edited by Infiltrator
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The installation took sometime to finish and besides I ran into some difficulties during the network cards detection process. But now that it is up and running, there are 4 options for you to back up smoothwall.

1. Install a Floppy drive in your system and use a floppy disk to save the current configuration.

2. Create an image of your current hard drive and use it to reimage another hard drive.

3. Instead of using FTP, you can SSH into smoothwall, but the SSH service will need to be set up on Smoothwall, before you can SSH into it.

4. Or you can install Smoothwall on a VM and make a copy of the Virtual HDD.

Hope this helps.

I think if not running a virtual machine which would be wicked easy to restore similar to restoring an image but a whole lot faster, the best way would be just an image of the HDD as this would have the setups, and mod already installed. Vs. a fresh install and then installing the mods and then restoring the settings.

The image restore would be pretty fast as there is not much data there anyway. I noticed though that Smoothwall setup 4 partitions on the drive and I am not sure if a restore of all partitions would be needed or just say 1.

I am also considering (even though I have switched to pfSense running a mini itx with an aton processor and also using a solid state drive vs. platter. I don't know if the increased speed would even matter though.

Edited by DaBeach
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I think if not running a virtual machine which would be wicked easy to restore similar to restoring an image but a whole lot faster, the best way would be just an image of the HDD as this would have the setups, and mod already installed. Vs. a fresh install and then installing the mods and then restoring the settings.

The image restore would be pretty fast as there is not much data there anyway. I noticed though that Smoothwall setup 4 partitions on the drive and I am not sure if a restore of all partitions would be needed or just say 1.

I am also considering (even though I have switched to pfSense running a mini itx with an aton processor and also using a solid state drive vs. platter. I don't know if the increased speed would even matter though.

Though SSDs are incredibly fast for a normal set up I don't see much benefits in using it. However if you plan on setting up a web proxy/cache you will definitely benefit from the SSD speeds.

Furthermore if budge is not an issue for you go for a SSD, if not just buy a WD 10K 74gb raptor drive, it still delivers a very good performance.

And imaging your HDD is the optimum you can do, it saves time and money.

Edited by Infiltrator
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Though SSDs are incredibly fast for a normal set up I don't see much benefits in using it. However if you plan on setting up a web proxy/cache you will definitely benefit from the SSD speeds.

Furthermore if budge is not an issue for you go for a SSD, if not just buy a WD 10K 74gb raptor drive, it still delivers a very good performance.

And imaging your HDD is the optimum you can do, it saves time and money.

Well would a raptor drive not increase case temps vs a SDD or even a low RPM drive especially in a small form factor case like a mini ITX?

A few tech notes for you. After just reinstalling a fresh copy of the latest pfSense V2.0b3 06/25/10 which the ISO is around 98MB the image resulted in a 913MB file and the other difference between Smoothwall and pfSense is that SW created 4 partitions while PF created only one.

Most of the packages for PF have failed me, except a few (the www proxy for 1). Some packages failed to automatically uninstall when requested.

Would you happen to know how I could find out the power draw on say the 3GHZ ATX machine I am using now vs the MINI ITX I am considering? I would like to use something that requires minimal power as it will be on all the time.

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I totally agree with you HHDs does generate heat whereas SSDs not as much. The only reason I mentioned about raptor drive over SSDs is that SSDs do degrade in performance over time and if you defrag a SSD that will eventually destroy the drive. Where on the other hand HDDs does not have this problem, you can defrag them and you will regain the lost performance again.

Now if you want to know how much power your system is consuming, you could buy a power meter.

http://www.latestbuy.com.au/digital-power-meter.html

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I totally agree with you HHDs does generate heat whereas SSDs not as much. The only reason I mentioned about raptor drive over SSDs is that SSDs do degrade in performance over time and if you defrag a SSD that will eventually destroy the drive. Where on the other hand HDDs does not have this problem, you can defrag them and you will regain the lost performance again.

Now if you want to know how much power your system is consuming, you could buy a power meter.

http://www.latestbuy.com.au/digital-power-meter.html

True. Do you find in any of your installs the need to defrag your router? And if so is there a utility build in with Smoothwall linux or pfSense free bsd? Would there be a utility or way of finding out if a drive is fragmented and causing a performance loss with either of the above systems?

Although I have poked around very briefly with linux, and have no experience with free BSD and I started on the internet when it was strictly a unix command line I am a noob with these OS's.

Another question, do you find much or any need to run these systems with more than 2 NIC's?

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True. Do you find in any of your installs the need to defrag your router? And if so is there a utility build in with Smoothwall linux or pfSense free bsd? Would there be a utility or way of finding out if a drive is fragmented and causing a performance loss with either of the above systems?

The only install that I did and needed de-fragmenting was my $6000.00 PC set up. That's due to the heavy gaming and of course some of the video encoding I do. Besides, its not like game and video encoding will be used on the SW OR PFS boxes.

All file systems become fragmented, but linux uses good allocation algorithms that minimize fragmentation so it generally doesn't become a problem, as apposed to Windows. So you won't need to worry much about fragmentation issues.

Another question, do you find much or any need to run these systems with more than 2 NIC's?

It all comes down to your needs, but in a basic set up like the one you have 2 nics should be enough. Unless you want to have wireless clients connecting to your firewall box via a wireless card, or some kind of virtual server that needs to be sitting outside your firewall perimeter, then you will need another NICs to be the DMZ.

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It all comes down to your needs, but in a basic set up like the one you have 2 nics should be enough. Unless you want to have wireless clients connecting to your firewall box via a wireless card, or some kind of virtual server that needs to be sitting outside your firewall perimeter, then you will need another NICs to be the DMZ.

So would I use an additional NIC setup as DMZ if I wanted to monitor activity on the WAN outside of my router for say attempts to access my router from the WAN side?

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So would I use an additional NIC setup as DMZ if I wanted to monitor activity on the WAN outside of my router for say attempts to access my router from the WAN side?

That's exactly right, you could also set up a honeypot for doing exactly what you said above, to monitor the traffic but most importantly it has the ability to log every transaction of what the attacker is doing, how he is doing it and with this information you gain more knowledge about the attacks and methods used by the hacker/attack and having said that you can deploy security measures for mitigating these attacks.

Another reason to deploy a DMZ is

There are times that you may want remote users to have access to items on your network. Some examples are:

* Web site

* Online business

* FTP download and upload area

­In cases like this, you may want to create a DMZ (Demilitarized Zone). Although this sounds pretty serious, it really is just an area that is outside the firewall. Think of DMZ as the front yard of your house. It belongs to you and you may put some things there, but you would put anything valuable inside the house where it can be properly secured.

Setting up a DMZ is very easy. If you have multiple computers, you can choose to simply place one of the computers between the Internet connection and the firewall. Most of the software firewalls available will allow you to designate a directory on the gateway computer as a DMZ.

Edited by Infiltrator
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