Before you start
To get the most out of this tutorial, follow the steps provided for each task with either a computer running GNU/Linux or a virtual machine with GNU/Linux as the operating system.
This tutorial introduces you to the basics of GNU/Linux security and shows you how to protect, or harden, your desktop against attacks. It gives you step-by-step examples of how to:
- Protect your computer against malware attacks
- Configure a firewall to keep attackers out
- Back up important files and recover files after a successful backup
- Install updates to your operating system and other software
- Password-protect the bootloader
These same fundamental security concepts for making your desktop safe can also serve as a foundation for hardening your Linux servers.
After completing this tutorial, you will be able to harden your GNU/Linux desktop and prevent attacks against your computer and its data. You will be able to install and configure software to help protect your desktop against malware that can give an attacker access to your computer. You will also be able to use a firewall to protect against inbound and outbound traffic, back up and restore your data, and apply other tricks that further harden your system.
This tutorial is written for beginning GNU/Linux users. It assumes that you have a basic understanding of the GNU/Linux operating system and have experience downloading and installing software.
To use the examples in this tutorial, you need the GNU/Linux operating system installed on a computer or as a virtual environment with root access. You also need an active Internet connection with the ability to download software.
The examples use Ubuntu, so it is recommended that you use a Debian fork of GNU/Linux. Although the examples will work on a virtual machine running GNU/Linux, you should not use a Live CD.