May 20 2024, 6:12 PM

FreeBSD pf: forward traffic from one interface to a particular server on another interface

I can't believe nobody ever made a post about how to port-forward with pf

Enable pf, if not already enabled, and also enable IP forwarding, by running these commands:

// enable the firewall
# sysrc pf_enable=YES
// optional: enable logging
# sysrc pflog_enable=YES
// enable IP forwarding for future boots
# sysrc gateway_enable=YES
# sysrc ipv6_gateway_enable=YES
// enable IP forwarding for current boot
# sysctl net.inet.ip.forwarding=1
# sysctl net.inet6.ip6.forwarding=1

Add the following code block to your /etc/pf.conf, setting:

  • ext_if to the interface on which traffic will arrive
  • int_if to the interface on which the server you want to forward traffic to is accessible
  • printer_ip to the IP address of the server you want to forward the traffic to
  • printer_port to the port number (or in this case, well-known protocol name) of the port you want to forward
ext_if = "tailscale0"
int_if = "bge0"
printer_ip = ""
printer_port = "ipp"
# translate packets going out of int_if to the IP of int_if
nat on $int_if -> ($int_if)
# redirect TCP packets coming into ext_if on printer_port to printer_ip
rdr on $ext_if proto tcp from any to any port $printer_port -> $printer_ip port $printer_port

You may also have to add a pass rule if you block traffic by default. Reload the firewall rules by running:

# pfctl -F all -f /etc/pf.conf

And that should be it.

This guide is adapted from instructions in this blog post and this Server Fault answer.

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