Is it safe to connect a Mac directly to the ONT? Like when the RG fails

Internet access discussion, including Fusion, FTTN and Gigabit Fiber!
8 posts Page 1 of 1
by tut_tut » Mon Feb 05, 2018 1:16 pm
Is it safe to connect a Mac directly to the ONT without the RG in between?

Would the GUI firewall built-in to macOS provide enough protection?

I’m contingency planning for when the RG fails, because it will eventually fail, and I’m left waiting on Sonic to send me a replacement. I’m also trying to do this the cheapest way possible with stuff I already have :D
by zvxdcfvd » Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:59 pm
Macs are not secure in general
by dane » Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:39 am
You’d be operating without the firewall, so it’s not recommended.
Dane Jasper
CEO
Sonic
by dherr » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:09 am
I have not used Apple since the Apple II days and have been a Linux only user for many years, but...

You would not be getting the benefit of the firewall in the router, of course. But you *would* still get any functions of the Mac firewall that you noted in your question.

Remember that if this is/was a laptop and you used it at a cafe then you would be just as exposed to the other cafe patrons. Very few in comparison to the whole internet, but still exposed. What is the Mac solution to security when using public Wi-Fi?

You would want to look into settings that tell your computer that it is on a public connection instead of "Home/Private/whatever".

Sonic is not going to recommend running this way, but you are not talking about doing so for an extended period, you are talking about running for days while waiting for a new router.

In your situation I would not be afraid to do so, but I would also be shutting down all services that I run on the LAN (apache, samba, etc.) and would switch to a fully closed host based firewall while waiting for a new router. I would do that *before* hooking up so that I don't even have seconds of running without a firewall that I am comfortable with.

I *wish* I could run this way in that situation, but I am on FTTN and thus cannot use anything but an AT&T router and would thus be hard down while waiting.
by cdrayson » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:01 pm
They are all correct about it being a bad idea from a security standpoint. That said, just plug the ethernet into your ethernet port (or get an adopter if you don't have one), and make sure your network settings are set to DHCP. That's it. Do check that your firewall is on, and minimize the time you plug in directly.

Contrary to the post above, Macs are relatively secure, and the built in firewall is good, but not as good as being behind an RG.
by tut_tut » Thu Feb 15, 2018 6:09 pm
Appreciate the feedback, thank you.
by littlemonster » Thu Feb 22, 2018 6:04 am
What about another router? I was experiencing cut-outs of service several times during the day (and at really inconvenient times such as during a training class that I was conducting) so I decided to get a TP-Link router. I connected that up directly to the ONT and it got an IP and everything seems to work fine. Is there any risk to doing it this way? My performance seems to have increased quite a bit.
by danielg4 » Thu Feb 22, 2018 12:30 pm
I do that myself, but many are not fast enough for gigabit throughput. Caveat emptor.
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