conntrack-tools branch, expect/vyatta, updated. conntrack-tools-1.0.0-24-g304ebcd
Pablo Neira Ayuso
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- Log -----------------------------------------------------------------
Author: Pablo Neira Ayuso <pablo at netfilter.org>
Date: Mon Dec 19 17:13:25 2011 +0100
conntrackd: support for expectation synchronization
This patch adds support to synchronize expectations between
firewalls. This addition aims to re-use as much as possible
of the existing infrastructure for stability reasons. The
expectation support has been tested with the FTP helper.
This extension requires libnetfilter_conntrack 1.0.0.
If this is the first time you're playing with conntrackd,
I *strongly* recommend you to get working setup of conntrackd
without expectation support before as described in the
documentation. Then, enabling expectation support is rather
To know more about expectations, if you're not familiar with them,
I suggest you to read:
"Netfilter's Connection Tracking System"
Reprinted from ;login: The Magazine of USENIX, vol. 31, no. 3
(Berkeley, CA: USENIX Association, 2006, pp40-45.)
In short, expectations allow one Linux firewall to filter multi-flow
traffic like FTP, SIP and H.323.
In my testbed, there are two firewalls in a primary-backup configuration
running keepalived. The use a couple of floating cluster IP address
(192.168.0.100 and 192.168.1.100) that are used by the client. These
firewalls protect one FTP server (192.168.1.2) that will be accessed by
In ASCII art, it looks like this:
/ \ FTP
-- client ------ ------ server --
192.168.0.2 \ / 192.168.1.2
This is the rule-set for the firewalls:
-A POSTROUTING -t nat -s 192.168.0.2/32 -d 192.168.1.2/32 -j SNAT --to-source 192.168.1.100
-A INPUT -p tcp -m tcp --dport 22 -j ACCEPT
-A INPUT -m state --state INVALID -j DROP
-A FORWARD -m state --state RELATED -j ACCEPT
-A FORWARD -i eth2 -m state --state ESTABLISHED -j ACCEPT
-A FORWARD -i eth1 -p tcp -m tcp --dport 21 --tcp-flags FIN,SYN,RST,ACK SYN -m state --state NEW -j ACCEPT
-A FORWARD -i eth1 -p tcp -m state --state ESTABLISHED -j ACCEPT
-A FORWARD -m state --state INVALID -j LOG --log-prefix "invalid: "
The following steps detail how to check that the expectation support
works fine for conntrackd:
1) You have to enable the expectation support in the configuration
file with the following option:
This enables expectation synchronization for the FTP, SIP and H.323 helpers.
You can alternatively use:
To enable expectation synchronization for all helpers.
2) Make sure you have loaded the FTP helper in both firewalls.
root at fw1# modprobe nf_conntrack_ftp
root at fw2# modprobe nf_conntrack_ftp
3) Switch to the client. Start one FTP control connection to one
server that is protected by the firewalls, enter passive mode:
(term-1) user at client$ nc 192.168.1.2 21
220 dummy FTP server
331 Please specify the password.
230 Login successful.
227 Entering Passive Mode (192,168,1,2,163,11).
This means that port 163*256+11=41739 will be used for the data
traffic. Read this if you are not familiar with the FTP protocol:
3) Switch to fw-1 (primary) to check that the expectation is in the
root at fw1# conntrackd -i exp
proto=6 src=192.168.0.2 dst=192.168.1.2 sport=0 dport=41739 mask-src=255.255.255.255 mask-dst=255.255.255.255 sport=0 dport=65535 master-src=192.168.0.2 master-dst=192.168.1.2 sport=36390 dport=21 [active since 5s]
4) Switch to fw-2 (backup) to check that the expectation has been successfully
root at fw2# conntrackd -e exp
proto=6 src=192.168.0.2 dst=192.168.1.2 sport=0 dport=41739 mask-src=255.255.255.255 mask-dst=255.255.255.255 sport=0 dport=65535 master-src=192.168.0.2 master-dst=192.168.1.2 sport=36390 dport=21 [active since 8s]
5) Make the primary firewall fw-1 fail. Now fw-2 becomes primary.
6) Switch to fw-2 (primary) to commit the external cache into the kernel.
root at fw2# conntrackd -c exp
The logs should display that the commit was successful:
root at fw2# tail -100f /var/log/conntrackd.log
[Wed Dec 7 22:16:31 2011] (pid=19195) [notice] committing external cache: expectations
[Wed Dec 7 22:16:31 2011] (pid=19195) [notice] Committed 1 new entries
[Wed Dec 7 22:16:31 2011] (pid=19195) [notice] commit has taken 0.000366 seconds
7) Switch to the client. Open a new terminal and connect to the port that
has been announced by the server:
(term-2) user at client$ nc -vvv 192.168.1.2 41739
(UNKNOWN) [192.168.1.2] 41739 (?) open
8) Switch to term-1 and ask for the file listing:
227 Entering Passive Mode (192,168,1,2,163,11).
9) Switch to term-2, it should display the listing. That means
everything has worked fine.
You may want to try disabling the expectation support and
repeating the steps to check that *it does not work* without
You can also display expectation statistics by means of:
root at fwX# conntrackd -s exp
This update requires no changes in the primary-backup.sh script
that is used by the HA manager to interact with conntrackd. Thus,
we provide a backward compatible command line interface.
Regarding the Filter clause and expectations, we use the master
conntrack to filter expectation events. The filtering is performed
in user-space. No kernel-space filtering support for expectations
yet (this support should go in libnetfilter_conntrack at some
This patch also includes support to disable caching and to allow
direct injection of expectations.
Signed-off-by: Pablo Neira Ayuso <pablo at netfilter.org>
Summary of changes:
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