A Host Firewall
This type of firewall consists of software that is deployed on just one computer. Many companies such as Windows, Linux distributors, and some Apple operating systems, preinstall the firewall software. The administrator of the operating systems (usually the owner) needs to be able to manage the firewall. The computer owner can also install his/her own hosted firewall.
A Network Firewall
This kind of firewall controls information as it comes in from the Internet to all the computers controlled by the network. The network firewall has a set of rules that it uses to determine or flag whether information should be allowed to enter the network before it reaches any of the computers in the company system.
There are different types of network firewalls:
- A proxy firewall routes information to proxy servers.
- A reverse proxy firewall routes the incoming information to a specific server and disallows transmission of the information to the other computers. The specific server then controls what information should be released.
- A reverse hosting server firewall utilizes sub-networks to control information processing.
For solo companies or companies with just a few employees, host firewalls may be a viable option. Many people use hosted firewalls on their desktop or their laptop. For any larger sized company or any company that uses a network, using individual firewalls just isn’t practical. The better alternative is to use a network firewall.
Network firewalls require a general set of rules while hosted firewalls allow for more customization.
The security solutions are not exclusive. A hybrid host/network firewall solution is possible.