Top 5 Best Linux Firewalls 2023

Mohammad Amayreh May 03, 2023 May 03, 2023
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Description: Discover the top 5 best Linux firewalls for 2023! This list includes Iptables, UFW, Firewalld, PfSense, and IPFire. Protect your system now!
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Explore Firewalls: Your Key to Data Protection

A network security solution that regulates inbound and outbound traffic by adhering to predetermined security protocols is known as a Firewall.

Firewalls can be hardware or software-based, and they are essential for protecting your computer from unauthorized access, malware, viruses, and other malicious attacks.

Top 5 Best Linux Firewalls 2023

Protect Your Data: Understanding Firewall Uses

Firewalls are an essential tool for protecting digital assets from malicious actors online. Through the implementation of sophisticated packet filtering methods, firewalls can proactively identify and block malicious traffic before it reaches its target.

Additionally, through the utilization of stateful inspection techniques, firewalls can establish criteria that incoming packets must meet prior to allowing them to pass through the network, thereby preventing malicious actors from accessing private data or compromising corporate networks.

Uncovering the Hidden Advantages of Firewall Protection

Firewalls are essential security measures that can be used to protect networks from malicious actors. They are beneficial for organizations because they act as a barrier between a trusted internal network and untrusted external networks, such as the internet.

Firewalls also have the ability to monitor incoming and outgoing traffic, providing detailed logs of activity and allowing administrators to detect suspicious behavior or intrusions.

Linux Firewalls

Linux Firewalls are a type of network security system that utilizes the Linux Operating System in order to protect computers and networks from malicious activity.

This technology is typically employed to prevent unauthorized access, monitor traffic, and block malicious or undesired data transmissions. It also serves as an effective tool for controlling malware, intrusion detection systems, and other types of threats.

Top 5 Best Linux Firewalls:


Iptables is a powerful firewall utility that is part of the Linux kernel and is used to configure network packet filtering rules.

It works by examining incoming and outgoing packets, verifying their headers and making decisions about whether to allow or deny them based on user-defined criteria.Packets can be filtered based on source address, destination address, port number, protocol type, etc.

It is generally utilized as part of a firewall, allowing or denying traffic on the basis of pre-defined rules. The main purpose of Iptables is to prevent unwanted traffic from entering into the internal network.

Top 5 Best Linux Firewalls - Iptables


  1. Iptables provides an effective way to configure and enforce firewall rules on a Linux system.
  2. It is highly configurable and feature-rich, with a wide range of modules available for customizing the firewall configuration.
  3. It is free and open source software which makes it more accessible to users on budget-limited environments.
  4. It provides tools to implement Network Address Translation (NAT), allowing multiple devices to use the same public IP address.
  5. Its logging capabilities can be used to track security events and detect potential attacks or malicious activity on the network.


  1. Iptables requires significant knowledge of networking protocols, Linux commands, as well as its own syntax and configuration files in order to use it correctly.
  2. It is not as user-friendly as some other commercial firewalls, making it difficult for inexperienced users to configure it properly without guidance from experienced professionals.

Uncomplicated Firewall (UFW)

Uncomplicated Firewall (UFW) is a front-end application for managing the iptables Netfilter firewall. It provides a user-friendly way to establish an effective rule set and simplifies the task of configuring, troubleshooting, and maintaining a firewall on Linux systems.

It has features such as logging of blocked packets, rate limiting or connection limiting, port forwarding and IP masquerading.

Uncomplicated Firewall (UFW)


  1. UFW is easy to install and configure.
  2. It is a basic firewall that provides basic protection against online threats.
  3. UFW is a great choice for Linux users as it can be used with most Linux distributions.
  4. It is free and open source, so anyone can use it without worrying about licensing fees or restrictions.
  5. UFW has a user-friendly graphical interface that makes setting up the firewall easier for new users.


  1. UFW does not provide advanced security features such as Intrusion Prevention System (IPS) or other advanced features of robust firewalls like those found in commercial solutions.
  2. The lack of logging capabilities from UFW limits its ability to detect suspicious network activity in real-time or track malicious traffic over time.
  3. It requires some command line knowledge to configure more complex rules.


Firewalld is a dynamic daemon-based firewall service for the Linux operating system that provides a layer of network security through a host-based firewall.It operates by allowing or denying packets based on predefined rulesets, which are assigned to each network zone.

These zones can be configured to protect different parts of the network from malicious traffic, while still providing access to authorised users.



  1. Firewalld provides an easy-to-use interface for configuring and managing a firewall on Linux systems.
  2. It is capable of handling complex network configurations with an array of zones, services, and rules.
  3. It allows you to assign different security levels to different network zones.
  4. The rich language support makes it easier to manage and configure the firewall rules in multiple languages.
  5. Firewalld supports IPv6 as well as IPv4 networks, which offers greater flexibility when configuring the firewall rules.


  1. Firewalld can be difficult to understand for people who are not familiar with iptables or network configuration in general.
  2. It does not have built-in logging or reporting capabilities, so manual logging is required for tracking changes made to the firewall rules over time.
  3. The default configuration is often too permissive


PfSense is a cost-effective, open-source solution for firewall and routing needs, leveraging the robust infrastructure of the FreeBSD operating system.It is often used as an Internet gateway, providing flexible routing capabilities for networks of any size.

Its modular architecture allows users to install components such as web protection, intrusion detection/prevention systems (IDS/IPS), and VPNs while providing scalability and reliability.



  1. Easy to set up and configure.
  2. Open source and has many support options.
  3. High level of security and reliability.
  4. Many different features available for customization.
  5. Has built-in firewall for added security protection.


  1. Limited scalability for larger networks due to hardware requirements.
  2. Can be complex for users who are not well-versed in networking terminology and concepts.
  3. Relatively costly compared to some other similar solutions on the market today.
  4. Not as well known or widely used as other industry-leading solutions like Cisco or Juniper Networks products, so there may not be as many resources available if help is needed with a problem or issue that arises while using it


IPFire is an open source, Linux-based firewall system specifically designed for network security and protection. It is highly customizable and provides a variety of features to enhance the security of a network. 

IPFire utilizes stateful packet inspection (SPI) technology that enables it to analyze data packets as they pass through the firewall in order to detect any malicious activity or threats. Additionally, it can also provide users with powerful logging and reporting capabilities, allowing them to quickly identify any suspicious activities.



  1. Highly secure and reliable firewall system.
  2. Easy to use web interface.
  3. Has an active support community with helpful resources and tutorials.
  4. Package selection is highly customizable allowing for flexibility in applications and services used.
  5. Open source, with frequent updates and patches available.


  1. May be too complex to install and configure for inexperienced users.
  2. Not as many packages available compared to other firewall distributions like pfSense or Sophos UTM 9.
  3. Limited virtualization capabilities, making it difficult to virtualize components for use in cloud deployments. 
  4. Not suitable for large-scale deployments due to lack of scalability options such as clustering or load balancing support for multiple firewalls behind a single IP address range.
  5. Requires manual installation of updates which can be time consuming and tedious if not automated properly through scripts


In conclusion,Linux Firewalls provide an effective and efficient way to protect a network against threats. Not only do they provide strong security, but they are also easy to configure and can be tailored to meet the needs of any organization.

As cybersecurity threats continue to increase, organizations should consider implementing a Linux firewall as part of their overall security strategy. Furthermore, administrators should remain vigilant and update their firewall regularly with the latest patches and updates in order to ensure that their network remains secure from cyber-attacks.

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