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Installation Method 2

If you read through method 1, you saw that it was pretty simple. Method 2 is even easier.

This method makes use of one of several distributions of Linux that will fit on a standard 3.5-inch floppy disk. Most of these distributions are based on the work done by the Linux Router Project.

This installation uses Freesco (a name that is a contraction of "Free" and "Cisco"). Freesco was developed as an alternative to the routing products made by Cisco, 3Com, Nortel, and others.

Freesco is based on Linux kernel 2.0.38 and includes firewalling and NAT, as well as servers for DHCP, DNS, Web, Time, Printing, and RAS dial-in—all on one floppy disk.

The first step is to download the software. Get the latest version (v0.2.5, at the time that I am writing this) and the manual. The file that you download is in a Windows Zip format and can be extracted on a Windows or Linux computer. A floppy disk image file and rawrite.exe, a DOS program that will write a Linux image file to a floppy disk, are included in the zipped file.

Make sure that you use a good floppy disk. Many failures with Freesco can be traced to bad floppy disks.

To make the Freesco disk on a Windows computer, open a DOS window and use the command rawrite -f freesco.025 -d a: (or whatever the current version number is, and use the correct drive letter for your floppy drive). On a Linux computer, the command to create the disk is dd if=freesco.025 of=/dev/fd0.

The disk is now ready to use. Put it in your firewall computer, and start the system. At the boot: prompt, enter the command setup. You must then log in as root in order to make the necessary changes to the system. The initial password for root is root.

You will then have to answer a series of questions, many of which have default answers, and you can simply press the Enter key to accept them. Choose Ethernet router for a cable or DSL connection. The first questions are for your computer's name and the name for your local network—these names can be anything you would like. The defaults are to use router as the host name for your computer, and inet as the name for your local network.

The remaining questions pertain to your particular setup, such as the I/O port and IRQ for your Ethernet card(s), and so on. You will need to have all of the answers ready. For the IP address of your internal network, use; you may then use the guidelines (given in method) 1 for setting up your computers that will connect to the Internet through this firewall.

A short description of your choices is given above each question. If you aren't sure about an answer, choose the default.

After you've answered all of the questions, save the configuration to a disk. The system will need to be restarted, and then the firewall should be working. Follow the steps in method 1 for testing the firewall connection. If everything works, you are finished setting up your Linux firewall. Now, enjoy the Internet.

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