Even though my firewall is active, is it protecting me fully given that the 'rules' are not active?

Output shows:

host based firewall active, empty rules

iptables modules loaded, but no rules active

Maybe I should mention that I recently changed the OS from ubuntu to debian.

The firewall was probably made in relation to the ubuntu system and settings, if that makes any sense. It's also possible that someone could have hacked the fw and deleted the rules.

  • 1
    A law came into force without rules , is it in force? Yes. Are there rules? No.
    – tungsten
    Aug 31, 2019 at 15:36
  • Even if your firewall would have rules enabled it would not protect you "fully". It only secures specific aspects (like blocking access to local services which should not be available from outside) but will never provide 100% security. Aug 31, 2019 at 17:19

1 Answer 1


Without rules in place, your firewall affords no protection, even if enabled.

It is common for a new installation of a Linux distribution to have iptables installed or even enabled without rules in place; adding the rules is left to the system owner, who knows which services they need to expose and which they need to protect.

If you installed Debian where Ubuntu had been installed before, then it will have the configuration of a fresh Debian install; it will not carry forward the Ubuntu configurations that were in place.

  • Even if the firewall is separated from the desktop OS? I forgot to mention this previously.
    – topencrypt
    Sep 2, 2019 at 11:53

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