Linux security essentials guide

This guide provides an introduction to security-related topics about Linux hardening processes, which reduce the risk that software vulnerabilities can be exploited. Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6, which is functionally similar to CentOS 6, is used for commands and examples.

This guide covers the most important topics and considerations for improving your server’s security, but it is not comprehensive and will not make your servers completely attack-proof .

Version disclaimers:

  • Most of the information is relevant for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 and CentOS 5, with some minor differences in the names of packages or small syntax changes. The same applies for earlier versions of Red Hat and CentOS.
  • Some commands described in this guide might differ between Red Hat and CentOS versions 6 and 5 because of changes in package naming conventions.
  • Most of this information can also apply to distributions not based on Red Hat, such as Debian and Ubuntu. However, the information is optimized for Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 and CentOS 6 systems and the yum package management system is used for examples.
  • Red Hat 5 and CentOS 5 reach support end-of-life (EOL) in March 2017. If you are running Red Hat 5 or CentOS 5, migrate to a newer version before EOL is reached or you will not be able to get updates for newer security vulnerabilities.

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