Introduction If you are new to firewalls like I was when I decided to build my own router/firewall, it can take some time to fully understand and feel comfortable implementing firewall rules. Before attempting to build my own router, I tried to do my research so I would know what I was getting myself into. In particular, I read several posts and watched some videos on how to create firewall rules since that is one of the biggest reasons I was taking on such a project – to implement greater security in my home network.
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 Pi-hole is open source software which provides ad blocking (and more) for your entire home network. It does this by blocking known ad serving domains. Pi-hole even has the ability to block network requests to malicious domains if the domain name is contained in one of the block lists. The high level statistics compiled by Pi-hole provides a much greater insight to what is going on in your home network.
Introduction I recently obtained the TP-Link T1500G-10MPS Power over Ethernet (PoE) smart switch (affiliate link) to use in my home network. A handful of devices that I currently own support Power over Ethernet. To minimize the cost, I chose the 8-port instead of the 24-port PoE switch. In the long run I probably will not need more than 8 ports, but I may eventually use all 8 ports. I also own the TP-Link T2600G-28TS switch (affiliate link).
Introduction Those who use or own Ubiquiti UniFi products mostly are familiar with the UniFi Controller. It is software used to manage all of your UniFi gear in a single, beautiful web-based dashboard. Ubiquiti sells their UniFi Cloud Key (affiliate link) if you wish to have a dedicated device, but you can also install it on your own hardware such as a Raspberry Pi (affiliate link). You can save a little bit of money by using a Raspberry Pi (around $50-60 versus $90-100 depending on the accessories purchased for the RPi), and you also have the flexibility to run additional software on the same device.