This chapter explains how to build a secure Windows NT bastion host by modifying the default Windows NT configuration. The configuration changes and procedures I explain focus on Windows NT 4.0, but most of it is also applicable to Windows 2000. Chapter 3, focuses on differences in Windows 2000.
If you carefully apply the changes suggested in this chapter, you should be able to build a very secure Windows server. However, there are several caveats.
First, remember that a chain is only as strong as its weakest link. If you follow the configuration steps in this chapter, your operating system will be quite secure. However, every application installed will also have to be configured with extreme caution—especially applications that require high privileges to run properly.
Second, note that if you secure your Windows NT server as described in this chapter, you’ll no longer be able to perform remote administration via NetBIOS-based tools such as Server Manager and Event Viewer. You won’t even be able to copy files to the system over the network anymore. However, there’s no need to panic! In Chapter 4, I teach you how to build a new and more secure remote management foundation for your bastion host.
Third, the methodology presented in these chapters primarily targets small to medium-sized perimeters with up to 50 or so Windows NT hosts. If you have plans to build a perimeter with more than 50 to 75 hosts, consider the dual-homed approach ...