Firewall Builder supports PIX "lan based" failover configuration. Unlike in Linux or BSD, where each interface of the firewall runs its own instance of failover protocol, PIX runs one instance of failover protocol over dedicated interface. PIX can also run state synchronization protocol over the same or another dedicated interface. These dedicated interfaces should be connected via separate switch and do not see regular traffic. Here is how this is implemented in Firewall Builder:
Like with all other supported firewall platforms, interface objects that belong to a cluster object serve to establish association between actual interfaces of the member firewalls. Cluster interface object should have the same name as corresponding member firewall interfaces. It should have Failover Group child object which should be configured with interfaces of the member firewalls. You can create Failover Group object using context menu item "Add Failover Group", the menu appears when you right mouse click on the cluster interface object. Here is an example of correct interface mapping between cluster and member firewalls:
The Failover Group object "cluster1:e0.101:members" is configured with interfaces "Ethernet0.101" of both members:
Interface that is configured for the failover on the member firewall should be marked as "Dedicated Failover". Use checkbox with this name in the interface object dialog to do this.
Cluster interface that corresponds to the failover interface of the members should be configured with protocol "PIX failover protocol". Click on the "Edit protocol parameters" button to edit timeout, poll time and the key.
Cluster interfaces that represent regular interfaces of the members also must have failover group objects; that is where you add interfaces of the member firewalls. There is no need to configure protocol in these failover groups because PIX does not run it over these interfaces. Regular interfaces should not be marked as "Dedicated Failover".
Cluster object should have State Synchronization group child object. Create it using context menu "Add State Synchronization Group" item if this object does not exist. In this object you need to configure member interfaces that should be used for state synchronization. You can use separate dedicated interfaces or the same interfaces used for failover. If these are separate, corresponding interface objects of the member firewalls must be marked as "Dedicated Failover".
One of the member firewall interfaces used in the State Synchronization group must be marked as "master". This is where you define which PIX unit is going to be the primary and which is going to be the secondary in the HA pair.
Here is an example of the state synchronization and failover using the same interface Ethernet2:
The State Synchronization Group object "State Sync Group" is configured with interfaces "Ethernet2" of both members:
Dedicated failover interfaces of the member firewalls must have IP addresses and these addresses must be different but belong to the same subnet.
Built-in policy installer treats PIX clusters in a special way:
For the PIX cluster, built-in installer installs generated configuration only on the master PIX unit. It determines which one is the master by looking in the StateSyncGroup object (state synchronization cluster group).
Dialog where user enters authentication credentials and other parameters for the installer has a checkbox that makes installer initiate copy of the configuration to the standby PIX if installation was successful.
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