How to get my Dad's Win2k system to access internet through my FreeBSD 6.2 system

benjamin thielsen bthielsen at
Tue Oct 14 05:27:33 PDT 2008

ack!  sorry for the blank reply barrage - my apologies!  i was  
inadvertently holding down a key combination that caused my mail  
client to send off a flurry of blank responses before i realized it  
was occurring.  probably a sign to stay away from computers today  :)


On Oct 14, 2008, at 08.10, benjamin thielsen wrote:

> Manish Jain wrote:
>> Hi,
>> I am poor at networking and need a little bit of help. My dad has a
>> Windows 2000 machine with a network card but does not have a  
>> connection
>> to the internet. My freebsd 6.2 box is connected to the internet  
>> and has
>> 2 network cards, rl0 and rl1. rl0 connects to the ISP and rl1 is
>> directly connected via a long Ethernet cable to the NIC on my dad's
>> machine. While I can access the internet easily, I want my dad to be
>> able to connect to the internet with my freebsd box serving as the
>> gateway. Can anyone please explain to me in easy steps how to  
>> accomplish
>> this ?
> Although to many old-timers this is easily achieved, to someone new to
> networking it is difficult to explain it in "easy steps". It  
> involves a set
> of pieces that have to fit together correctly in order to work. You  
> will
> need to do some proper reading on the underlying concepts first.
> First, establish that there exists basic network connectivity  
> between your
> machine and your dads. You may need to use a crossover cable. You  
> will want
> to assign a static IP address in the "Private" IP space range to  
> your rl1
> interface. This is also known as RFC 1918. You will also want to  
> manually
> configure a static IP on your dad's machine that is in the same  
> network,
> instead of allowing it to come up on the link.local of 169.254.x.x. An
> example would be your rl1 == netmask and  
> your
> dad's machine == netmask For DNS at this  
> stage
> you can use hosts files on each host for name resolution. Ensure  
> that each
> machine can be ping'd by the other.
> Next, you will want to configure your FreeBSD machine as a NAT  
> gateway. In
> your /etc/rc.conf you will want something like gateway_enable="YES"  
> and
> some form of firewall initialization[1]. The gateway_enable is what  
> allows
> the forwarding of packets between your rl0 and your rl1, but the  
> activation
> of NAT functionality is usually a function contained within a  
> firewall. So
> conceptually, the firewall will be "in between" rl0 and rl1.
> There are three different firewalls you can choose from. Configuring  
> the
> firewall is usually where the inexperienced get stuck. This subject
> material is beyond the scope of this missive, and you would do well to
> start reading in the Handbook. But essentially, when you configure  
> NAT in
> the firewall your rl0 (connected to the ISP) will be assigned a  
> "Public" IP
> address and the NAT function will translate between "Public" and  
> "Private".
> The next sticky point that will happen, should you get this far, is  
> name
> resolution. You will want to place the IP addresses of the name  
> servers of
> your ISP in your /etc/resolv.conf. You will also want to enter these  
> into
> the TCP configuration of your dad's machine. In addition, on your  
> dad's
> machine you will enter the IP address you used on your rl1 as the  
> "default
> route".
> The subject is much too broad for exhaustive coverage here. If your
> DSL/Cable modem has router ports on it, it might just be easier to  
> plug
> your dad's machine up there and forget about all of this. Much  
> reading will
> be required of you, and once you know most of it then you will know  
> what
> specific questions to ask when you encounter sticking points. This is
> intended only as a very generic form of overview.
> -Mike
> [1] For example, a couple of lines from my /etc/rc.conf:
> pf_enable="YES"
> pf_rules="/etc/pf.conf"
> pf_flags="-e"
> pflog_enable="YES"
> pflog_logfile="/var/log/pflog"
> pflog_flags=""
> and the NAT line from my /etc/pf.conf:
> nat on $ExtIF inet from $INTERNAL to any -> ($ExtIF)
> Please note that these are for illustrative purposes only, and by  
> themselves
> will do nothing for your specific situation. There is much more that  
> you
> will have to dig out of the documentation, understand, and configure
> appropriately.
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