How-To Geek

Install the Firestarter Firewall on Ubuntu Linux

Firestarter is an easy to use firewall for Ubuntu that includes a GUI administration tool. Installation of this firewall is as easy as using it. In this HowTo we will cover how to install the firewall.

Open a terminal window, and type in the following command:

sudo apt-get install firestarter

After the installation is finished, you can find the administration GUI at System \ Administration \ Firestarter:

When you launch the GUI for the first time, it will take you through a setup wizard:

Click forward, and you will be able to select the network device. If you are using DHCP for your machine, make sure you select that checkbox here:

Click Forward, and then Forward again. You will see the final screen of the wizard:

Click the save button and you will see the normal GUI screen:

This GUI is accessible from the tray icon, shown here:


The firewall is now installed. The firewall will continue running whether or not you are running the GUI, but the GUI will not be started up automatically unless you add it to the startup list using this path:

sudo /usr/sbin/firestarter

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Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 12/7/06

Comments (21)

  1. rob

    I get a message that says ‘couldn’t find package’, I’m very new to linux, so this could be my error, but I just copied and pasted your code into my terminal

  2. The Geek


    You may want to update your repository list and select the universe repository. I documented it here:

  3. Seth

    I’ve got Firstarter up and running, but I need to configure it let me connect from a windows machine on my network. I’ve added the IP address of my router to the “allow connections from host” field in the Policy tab, but no luck. Didn’t allow connections before I added this, or after. Firestarter doesn’t even log an attempt to connect.


  4. The Geek

    The Firestarter firewall is extremely basic, and if you are trying to allow remote access from various machines you might want to go for iptables instead.

  5. Gary

    Your last instruction to make the firestarter GUI to start up automatically did not work. Basically, Ubuntu seems to just ignore it. I’m using Ubuntu6.10.


  6. richard

    after recently installing I note that if you tick/enable start on dial up especially with etho already on Firestarter is really quick to load.Hope this helps some people

  7. rajiv

    Hi all,
    i installed firestarter on my ubuntu 7.04 but when its active the internet is not working, i mean am not able to open pages..but once i disable it the net works fine…!!!
    any suggestions or solutions…plz post it..thanks in advance.

  8. cornel

    my firewall install is ok / my internet is ok / eth0 works but i can’t start firewall… massage “eth0 is not ready” /?? can you have a solution ? thanks !

  9. Gomi

    Good program.
    Easy to use, userfirendly features.

    You can look inside the events tab and see if you want to add or block the connection using just the right-click on the mouse.

    very easy.

  10. Luca

    Thank you!

  11. antonjmatt

    When open the terminal and it asks me for my password i can not type anything in the password space.

  12. Robert Löfgren

    Can you access this application via browser from anywhere (Like an internet cafe)

  13. airtonix

    The Geek,

    You are making an error here, firestarter is just a gui.

    it’s the front end for iptables.

  14. ufoengineer

    To be started up automatically add THIS to the startup list:
    gksu /usr/sbin/firestarter
    You can have problems if you use sudo with GUI.

  15. mjkal

    your keyboard only seems to be diabled but all that happens is that linux does not give astrex when u type your password just type password and press return it took me 4 hours tofigure this out good luck

  16. handsum

    well i did install that fire wall without a problem on a pentium D desktop but this time im trying to install it on a pentium 4 desktop using ubuntu gutsy 7.10 this error msg im getting “Firestarter cannot be installed on your computer type (i386)
    Either the application requires special hardware features or the vendor decided to not support your computer type.”
    any suggestions to get a firewall on this desktop?

  17. Rakesh

    Thanks for the details! a great help!

  18. john jennings

    H i , I am having a problem loading Firestarter free fire wall on my Linux Ubuntu , can you help at all !!??

    All the best , John Jennings .

  19. razan

    hi,, my project is to design and implement ipv6 firewall under ubuntu and design a graphical interface how to geek help me ?

  20. victor

    thanks alot.just know you also need dhcp3-server for the dhcp service to work.thanks again

  21. Al Humphrey

    When I looked at active connections I saw a site “” listed. I was only on one site that had nothing to do with this site so I googled the site and found several sites that gave basic information about this site. This included site adviser, which gave the site a clean bill of health. Are there other sites where I can look up the credibility of site accessing my computer. Or am I being paranoid.

    Thanks al

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