free beer (as in 'free beer' :-) ) for Linux help this or another weekend

Mcleod, Ian ian.mcleod at
Tue Dec 24 12:28:33 CST 2002

I have a shed full of home brew stouts, ginger beers (alcoholic) and
standard beer.

I need help with setting up my firewall and ADSL wireless gateway and file
(etc) server.

Compiling drivers, diagnosing driver / network problems, tuning network
parameters (especially wireless), setting up a firewall, proxy, etc
optimally for 1 - 2 desktop Internet users and multi-platform secure file
sharing (FreeSwan or whatever).  Also interested in IPSec to 'tunnel' my
connection over the wireless link, and how to ensure that the gateway is
secure from the Internet as well as wireless medium (authentication,
encryption, etc).

Apparently WEP won't work on ad-hoc networks - which to borrow from Linux
methodology - is crap.  I'm sure there is a work around, fudged driver to
make an Access Point or something.  I've learnt that nothing is impossible
with Linux - just impossible to configure what is possible.

I've read up a lot on wireless technology so I am quite familiar with the
hardware and concepts, but I still need guidance in configuring and tuning
all of the above..

At the moment I am running a Win2000 gateway - and sure - spend lots of $$$
for firewall, VPN, authentication, encryption etc software (all standard but
hard to configure Linux stuff) - it really sucks.  I would not trust that
gateway as far as I could throw it (at least in the default Win2000 state
which seems to be designed to make one spend lots $$$ on training or
software to get it to do anything useful - like actually be secure).  I am
also resigned to using XP for the client machine (REALLY nice screen fonts -
but that's the only main advantage) which sucks.  Lots of $$$ or dodgy
software or cripple ware to actually make it reasonably secure and useful.
I hate it.  I want Linux back - I can actually do stuff with that (once I
have deciphered the required config files).

Basically I don't want some stingy sod ripping off my ADSL connection or
file server over wireless or being hacked in to over the Internet (the
latter is the relatively easy bit!)


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