Book foreword / first reviews out

November 10th, 2009 by Chris Buechler

Glad to see two book reviews on Amazon already, both with five stars!

I was thrilled to have the foreword for the book written by one of my favorite authors, Michael W Lucas, the author of Absolute FreeBSD, Absolute OpenBSD, Cisco Routers for the Desperate, PGP & GPG, among other things. Thought I would share it here.

My friends and co-workers know that I build firewalls. At least once a month someone says “My company needs a firewall with X and Y, and the price quotes I’ve gotten are tens of thousands of dollars. Can you help us out?”

Anyone who builds firewalls knows this question could be more realistically phrased as “Could you please come over one evening and slap together some equipment for me, then let me randomly interrupt you for the next three to five years to have you install new features, debug problems, set up features I didn’t know enough to request, attend meetings to resolve problems that can’t possibly be firewall issues but someone thinks might be the firewall, and identify solutions for my innumerable unknown requirements? Oh, and be sure to test every possible use case before deploying anything.”

Refusing these requests makes me seem churlish. Accepting these requests ruins my cheerful demeanor. For a long time, I wouldn’t build firewalls except for my employer. pfSense lets me be a nicer person without having to actually work at it. With pfSense I can deploy a firewall in just a few hours — and most of that is running cables and explaining the difference between “inside” and “outside.” pfSense’s extensive documentation and user community offers me an easy answer to questions — “did you look that up?” If pfSense doesn’t support a feature, chances are I couldn’t support it either. But pfSense supports everything I could ask for, and with a friendly interface to boot. The wide userbase means that features are tested in many different environments and generally “just work,” even when interacting with the CEO’s kids’ Windows ME PC connected to the Internet by Ethernet over ATM over carrier pigeon. Best of all, pfSense is built on much of the same software I’d use myself. I trust the underlying FreeBSD operating system to be secure, stable, and efficient.

Security updates? Just click a button and reboot. You need new features? Just turn them on. pfSense handles clustering, traffic shaping, load balancing, integration with your existing equipment through RADIUS, IPsec, PPTP, monitoring, dynamic DNS, and more. Big-name industry suppliers charge outrageous fees to support what pfSense freely provides. If your employer insists on paying for support contracts, or if you just feel more secure knowing you can pick up the phone and scream for help, you can get pfSense support agreements very reasonably. If you don’t need a support contract, I happen to know that Chris, Jim, or anyone else with a pfSense commit bit will let grateful pfSense users buy them a beer or six.

Personally, I don’t build firewalls from scratch any more. When I need a firewall, I use pfSense.

– Michael W. Lucas

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23 Responses to “Book foreword / first reviews out”

  1. Jason Says:

    Awesome, his Absolute FreeBSD (and the other BSD ones) are some of my very favorite computer books of all time.

    His writing style rocks.

  2. Juve Says:

    Nice ! …no…..Awesome !

    When reading such words…we realize that we aren’t alone :-)

  3. Steven Says:

    Such an exciting time – PFSense nearing 1.2.3 release, Nanobsd, a new book and a recommendation from Michael Lucas! Chris, Scott & team – thank you so much, please keep up the great work – you guys rock!

  4. Marco Says:

    I think I’ll buy the book – this project absolutely deserve everything that it may need to keep going. It’s far the best amongst the competition.

  5. Maxim Hansen Says:

    Gaaah….

    Now I’m getting really impatient, while waiting for Amazon to ship the book to me! :P

    But truly, pfSense is an amazing product, and deserves every bit of support and praise it gets! :D

  6. covex Says:

    Waiting for my book from Amazon! The project is great and, most importantly, the support is amazing. Keep up the good work!

  7. Darkk Says:

    I absolutely love the book!! Very well organized and plenty of examples.

    Very happy with it and will keep it handy for a long time.

  8. Axellsan Says:

    Pfsense..!!! Simple… The Best :)

    Axellsan/BR

  9. kaparaza Says:

    I finally got the book after 9 days of patience…very nice.

  10. James Says:

    Mine was also dispatched by amazon.co.uk. I will have it next week then. Can’t wait and hopefully the chapter about traffic shaping is worth the book ;)

  11. Alexandre Says:

    Got my copy today. Ordered on November 6th, shipped on 11th and delivered by DHL in Canada on 16th. Great book!

  12. Duncan Says:

    Just bought 2 copies. One for me and one for the office. Thanks

  13. Lloyd Says:

    Also waiting on a book from Amazon. They initially said it was due to arrive on the 5th of January (I am down under in Australia) but now it is due to arrive before Christmas. I am so excited that I might wrap it and put it under the tree!

  14. Tim Says:

    Great book, received it today from Amazon USA! Thanks for that really good written book filled with a lot of useful information! :-)

  15. Paul Smith Says:

    Just received my book from amazon.co.uk well worth the wait, thank you pfSense :)

  16. Heitor Lessa Says:

    For my happiness today I bought my book edition ;)

    Thanks one more time for GREAT work.

  17. rhawk1 Says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you, pfsense. Without such a great product, our company would not be able to operate. We bought the book too!!

  18. Itwerx Says:

    Up to six reviews now, still all five stars. Just ordered a copy for us!

  19. Wikko Says:

    Any non-dead-trees version, pleeeeease?

  20. Vaughn L. Reid III Says:

    I just received my copy and have started reading. Although I support PFSense virtually every day, I have already learned several additional things about this amazing firewall distribution. The book is well written with clear instructions, some great technical information, and excellent diagrams. Congratulations on a job well done!

  21. Dominik Says:

    I ordered a copy of this great book today. Can’t wait until it arrive.
    pfSense is great.

  22. Dennis L. Says:

    Looking at a Dec 21st delivery date! PfSense is the best! Thanks for all the hardwork and support!

  23. Aaron Says:

    Ordered 2 today! Thanks very much for the great work and all of the help over the years.

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