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Network Applications

Flying Buttress

Home Page Release Notes License:
Shareware; $25

Current Version: 1.4 (January 2, 2006)

Please note: Flying Buttress was formerly known as BrickHouse.

From the Flying Buttress home page:

"Flying Buttress is designed to make using the network firewall built in to Mac OS X quick and easy. By using Flying Buttress to enable your computer's firewall, you can help prevent unauthorized villains from gaining access to your computer via your internet connection, and from performing network attacks.

"While Mac OS X is fairly secure as installed, it also includes a powerful network traffic filter or firewall that can both prevent break-in attempts and keep your computer from being used in attack on another computer. Unfortunately, the default installation leaves it wide open, and you must manually 'add rules' or filters using a command line tool called ipfw. You need to use to do this. My mom isn't going to be able to do this.

"That's where Flying Buttress comes in. Flying Buttress provides a simple and easy interface to setting and activating your firewall's filters. It also includes a firewall monitor window to allow you to see how often each filter is used. Filter settings can be saved and switched quickly, and imported and exported to and from disk. Settings can be created by knowledgeable users and admins, and distributed to others to disable specific or recently discovered attack techniques."

Version 1.4 adds/changes the following:

  • Changed name to Flying Buttress.
  • Fixed startup item issue under 10.3.9 or higher.

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Related Links

For an interesting and objective third-party view of Apple's networking technology - from MacTCP through Open Transport and beywond - Peter Sichel's Sustainable Softworks page is unparalleled.

Also Consider . . .

These are applications that are newer and of potential interest, but which I haven't yet selected for permanent inclusion. Have a look, and let me know if you think they deserve to be part of the permanent collection!