In a previous article, you explored how to control the firewall at the command line in Fedora.
Now you are going to see how to see how add, remove, and list services, protocols and ports in order to block or allow them.
A short recap
First, it’s a good idea to check the status of your firewall, see if it’s running or not. You do this, as we previously learned, by using the state option (firewall-cmd ‐‐state).
The next step is to get the zone for the desired network interface. For example, I use a desktop that has two network interfaces: a physical interface (enp0s3), representing my actual network card and a virtual interface (virbr0) used by virtualization software like KVM. To see what zones are active, run firewall-cmd ‐‐get-active-zones.
Now that you know what zone you’re interested in, you can list the rules for the zone with firewall-cmd ‐‐info-zone=FedoraWorkstation.
Reading zone information
To display information for a particular zone, run firewall-cmd ‐‐zone=ZoneName ‐‐list-all, or simply display information for the default zone with:
[dan@localhost ~]$ firewall-cmd --list-all
services: dhcpv6-client mdns samba-client ssh
ports: 1025-65535/udp 1025-65535/tcp
Now, let’s explore the output. The first line is showing which zone the following information applies to and if that zone is currently in use.
The target : default simply tells us this is the default zone. This can be set or retrieved via the ‐‐set-default-zone=ZoneName and ‐‐get-default-zone.
icmp-block-inversion, indicates if ICMP requests are blocked. For example if the machine responds to ping requests from other machines on the network. The interfaces field shows all interfaces that adopt this zone.
Handling services, ports, and protocols
Now focus on the services, ports, and protocols rows. By default, the firewall will block all ports, services and protocols. Only the listed ones will be allowed.
You can see the allowed services are very basic client services in this case. For example, accessing a shared folder on the network (samba-client), to talk to a DNS server or connect to a machine via SSH (the ssh service). You can think of a service as a protocol in combination to a port, for instance the ssh service is using the SSH protocol and, by convention, port 22. By allowing the ssh service, what you’re really doing is allowing incoming connections that use the ssh protocol at default port 22.
Notice, services that have the client word in their name, as a rule of thumb, refer to outgoing connections, i.e. connections that you make with your IP as source going to the outside, as opposed to the SSH service, for example, that will accept incoming connections (listening to connection coming from outside at you).
You can look up services in the file /etc/services. For example if you wish to know what port and protocol these service uses:
[dan@localhost ~]$ cat /etc/services | grep ssh
ssh 22/tcp # The Secure Shell (SSH) Protocol
ssh 22/udp # The Secure Shell (SSH) Protocol
You can see SSH uses both TCP and UDP port 22. Also, if you wish to see all available services, just use firewall-cmd ‐‐get-services.
Opening a port
If you want to block a port, service, or protocol, all you have to do if make sure it’s not listed here. By extension, if you want to allow a service, you need add it to your list.
Let’s say you want to open the port 5000 for TCP connection. To do this, run:
sudo firewall-cmd --zone=FedorwaWorkstation --permanent --add-port=5000/tcp
Notice that you need to specify the zone for which the rule applies. When you add the rule, you also need to specify if it is a TCP or UDP port via as indicated above. The permanent parameter sets the rule to persist even after a system reboot.
Look at the information for your zone again:
[dan@localhost ~]$ firewall-cmd --list-all FedoraWorkstation (active) target: default icmp-block-inversion: no interfaces: enp0s3 sources: services: dhcpv6-client mdns samba-client ssh ports: 1025-65535/udp 1025-65535/tcp 5000/tcp protocols: masquerade: no forward-ports: source-ports: icmp-blocks: rich rules:
Similarly, if you wish to remove this port from the list, run:
sudo firewall-cmd --zone=FedorwaWorkstation --permanent --remove-port=5000/tcp
The very same remove (‐‐remove-protocol, ‐‐remove-service) and add (‐‐add-protocol, ‐‐add-service) options are also available for services and protocols.
Photo by T. Kaiser on Unsplash.