Tip

Configuring PIX firewall IPsec support



With a competitively priced firewall product and the prevalence of Cisco routers, one would think PIX would be the most popular firewall device. Some complain that PIX is difficult to configure. In the following tip excerpted form InformIT,

    Requires Free Membership to View

writer Mike Wenstrom takes a look at the necessary tasks involved in configuring PIX firewall IPSec support.

Mike Wenstrom is the author of Managing Cisco Network Security.


Task 1: Prepare for IPsec

Successfully implementing an IPsec network requires planning before you begin to configure individual PIX Firewalls and other IPsec peers. Configuring IPsec encryption can be complicated. You should begin by defining the detailed IPsec security policy based on the overall company security policy described in Appendix B, "An Example of an XYZ Company Network Security Policy." See Chapter 15, "Understanding Cisco IPSec Support," for more details on how to plan for IPsec. Here are some planning steps in preparing for IPsec:

  1. Determine the IKE (IKE Phase 1, or main mode) policy between IPsec peers based on the number and location of the peers.
  2. Determine the IPsec (IKE Phase 2, or quick mode) policy, including IPsec peer details such as IP addresses and IPsec transform sets and modes.
  3. Check the current configuration by using write terminal, show isakmp, show isakmp policy, show crypto map, and other show commands.
  4. Ensure that the network works without encryption to eliminate basic routing problems using the ping command and by running test traffic before encryption.
  5. Ensure that existing access lists in the perimeter router and PIX Firewall permit IPsec traffic, or the desired traffic will be filtered out.

Task 2: Configure IKE for Preshared Keys

The next major task in configuring PIX Firewall IPsec is to configure IKE parameters gathered earlier. Note that, in PIX configuration commands, ISAKMP is synonymous with IKE. Configuring IKE consists of the following essential steps and commands, which are covered in subsequent sections in more detail:

  1. Enable or disable IKE with the isakmp enable command.
  2. Create IKE policies with the isakmp policy commands.
  3. Configure preshared keys with the isakmp key and associated commands.
  4. Verify the IKE configuration with the show isakmp [policy] command.

Task 3: Configure IPSec

The next major task in configuring PIX Firewall IPsec is to configure the IPsec parameters previously gathered. This section presents the steps used to configure IPsec. The general tasks and commands used to configure IPsec encryption on PIX Firewalls are summarized as follows. Subsequent sections discuss each configuration step in detail.

  1. Configure crypto access lists with the access-list command.
  2. Configure transform set suites with the crypto ipsec transform-set command.
  3. (Optional) Configure global IPsec security association lifetimes with the crypto ipsec security-association lifetime command.
  4. Configure crypto maps with the crypto map command.
  5. Apply crypto maps to the terminating/originating interface with the crypto map map-name interface interface command.
  6. Verify IPsec configuration with the variety of available show commands.

Task 4: Test and Verify the Overall IPsec Configuration

The final step in configuring IPsec for preshared keys is to verify that all the IKE and IPsec values were configured correctly and to test it to ensure that it works properly. The PIX Firewall contains a number of show, clear, and debug commands that are useful for testing and verifying IKE and IPsec, which are summarized in this section.


For a much more detailed description of these tasks, click over to InformIT. Registration is required, but it's free.


This was first published in April 2002

There are Comments. Add yours.

 
TIP: Want to include a code block in your comment? Use <pre> or <code> tags around the desired text. Ex: <code>insert code</code>

REGISTER or login:

Forgot Password?
By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy
Sort by: OldestNewest

Forgot Password?

No problem! Submit your e-mail address below. We'll send you an email containing your password.

Your password has been sent to:

Disclaimer: Our Tips Exchange is a forum for you to share technical advice and expertise with your peers and to learn from other enterprise IT professionals. TechTarget provides the infrastructure to facilitate this sharing of information. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or validity of the material submitted. You agree that your use of the Ask The Expert services and your reliance on any questions, answers, information or other materials received through this Web site is at your own risk.