Introduction IPv6 was drafted in the mid-1990s when it was realized that IPv4 addresses would quickly be exhausted due to the explosive growth of the Internet. Since the IPv4 protocol was originally a research project, approximately 4.3 billion unique IP addresses was considered more than enough. I doubt many imagined our current world where nearly everything would be connected to the Internet. Various techniques such as assigning smaller sized networks to organizations and the utilization of NAT (Network Address Translation) helped extend the time before IPv4 addresses would be exhausted.
In my home network I wanted to set up a dedicated Pi-hole installation so that I could have network-wide ad blocking. Additionally, I could reduce the telemetry/tracking performed by applications and operating systems as well as potentially block malware. Pi-hole provides the ability to view the DNS traffic on my network on a per device basis, which may present valuable insight in detecting unusual activity on the network. While OPNsense can be configured to provide DNS blocking, I really like the graphs and logging of Pi-hole.
Introduction It is not uncommon for many home networks to utilize an all-in-one network device provided by the users’ Internet Service Provider (ISP). For ease of setup and use, ISPs typically include/lease this equipment by default when users order Internet service. These all-in-one devices are essentially a combination of a modem, router, switch, firewall, and wireless access point. They can also include VOIP (Voice Over IP), home security, and cable TV services.
Introduction For the uninitiated, VLANs are Virtual Local Area Networks. Think of them as logically separate networks that are similar in concept to physically separated networks. The biggest difference is that you do not need to put network devices on physically separate switches or other network hardware. VLANs are both economical and convenient. It is economical since you do not need to purchase extra hardware and convenient since your network devices can be physically located anywhere yet still be grouped in logically separate networks.
A “router on a stick” (aka “one-armed router”) is a network configuration in which a single network switch is connected to a single LAN interface on a router. The network switch may be configured to have two or more VLANs to logically partition the network. The router is responsible for inter-VLAN routing so that network traffic may flow from one VLAN to another. This traffic is usually controlled via firewall rules to restrict certain traffic.