I am owning a small company and we have purchased a server to setup few server applications on it as well as other software.

We would like to setup our network in following way

Internet<->WindowsServer2003 as router<->Switch<->Office Computers

Server has two nic interfaces and we have 24ports 1GB network switch connected to one nic and internet connection to another nic. Our ISP is Frontier and we have Fios 25/25. We get network cable out of ONT box directly connected to our server. There are no modems/routers.

Setting up DHCP on windows 2003 is easy job but we would like to have the ability to port forward some ports from office computers.

I have some knowledge in networking but not as much. How could I setup FHCP server on win2k3 with the ability to port forward some ports to office computers?

Thank you for your time

  • 2
    I would highly recommend against connecting your windows server box directly to the internet and investing in a SOHO or similar type firewall appliance (a cheap Sonicwall or something along those lines at the very least) and setup your forwarding and/or proxy through the appliance. – Rex Jan 4 '11 at 21:44
  • Completely agree, while the MS documentation for SBS/Server 2003 lists the dual NIC option as a recommended configuration, using a single nic and a hardware router/firewall is much preferred. I'm not familiar w/ the ONT device but it may have port fwd capabilities. – Ed Fries Jan 4 '11 at 21:56
  • I have heard that there is a panel for ONT box but I have no idea how to access it so unfortunately I can't do anything about it. I would love to use dedicated firewall but our main application will be installed on server/router because it requires a network interface with WAN IP address. I would get few static IP Addresses, purchase professional router/firewall and then setup server and application behind firewall/router with static WAN IP on network interface. But unfortunately ISP can't provide static IP Adresses anymore >< – jM2.me Jan 4 '11 at 22:14

If you must use your Windows Server as the business's router instead of using something like a Sonicwall appliance as Rex has suggested, I would first harden the server by turning off all non-essential services, closing all ports, and installing all of the updates. Only open the minimum amount of ports necessary to operate the business.

I would suggest you set up a DNS service on it as well and then allow dynamic updates to the DNS so when the DHCP'd address changes on one of the client computers, it is tracked in the DNS or you could just reserve those IP addresses in DHCP for those client computers which need to have specific ports open to the Internet connection which is probably the better of the two solutions without setting static address on the machines themselves. You will do your port forwarding in the firewall software (Windows firewall or a third-party firewall).

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  • I have already disabled all non needed services and such. There are about 10 computers in the office and only two will need to portforward ports 5675 (computer 1) and 29000 (computer 2). So those computers will have static IP set manually. It's all about port forwarding from computer inside network to outer world. Have never done it on windows. – jM2.me Jan 4 '11 at 22:08

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