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I have a hard time understanding iptables rules.

I am running a centos 6.5 VM on my laptop (vmware hypervisor) and it looks like it comes with this setup for iptables:

# iptables -L
Chain INPUT (policy ACCEPT)
target     prot opt source               destination         
ACCEPT     all  --  anywhere             anywhere            state RELATED,ESTABLISHED 
ACCEPT     icmp --  anywhere             anywhere            
ACCEPT     all  --  anywhere             anywhere            
ACCEPT     tcp  --  anywhere             anywhere            state NEW tcp dpt:ssh 
REJECT     all  --  anywhere             anywhere            reject-with icmp-host-prohibited 

Chain FORWARD (policy ACCEPT)
target     prot opt source               destination         
REJECT     all  --  anywhere             anywhere            reject-with icmp-host-prohibited 

Chain OUTPUT (policy ACCEPT)
target     prot opt source               destination         

I just install apache on it, but I was not able to access the web server even though httpd is running.

This is the error I get, if I attempt to access the web server from the localhost:

[root@mig-dev-006 conf]# wget
--2014-07-09 08:46:00--
Connecting to||:80... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 403 Forbidden
2014-07-09 08:46:00 ERROR 403: Forbidden.

From my Windows7 laptop (using cygwin) I get this error:

$ wget
           => `index.html'
Connecting to||:80... failed: Connection timed out.

I know that I can simply flush the iptables rules with iptables --flush, but I'd prefer to understand what is going on and be able to add a rule that would allow http and https traffic.

Here is my httpd.conf:

$ grep -v "#" /etc/httpd/conf/httpd.conf  | grep -v "^$"
ServerTokens OS
ServerRoot "/etc/httpd"
PidFile run/
Timeout 60
KeepAlive Off
MaxKeepAliveRequests 100
KeepAliveTimeout 15
<IfModule prefork.c>
StartServers       8
MinSpareServers    5
MaxSpareServers   20
ServerLimit      256
MaxClients       256
MaxRequestsPerChild  4000
<IfModule worker.c>
StartServers         4
MaxClients         300
MinSpareThreads     25
MaxSpareThreads     75 
ThreadsPerChild     25
MaxRequestsPerChild  0
Listen 80
LoadModule auth_basic_module modules/
LoadModule auth_digest_module modules/
LoadModule authn_file_module modules/
LoadModule authn_alias_module modules/
LoadModule authn_anon_module modules/
LoadModule authn_dbm_module modules/
LoadModule authn_default_module modules/
LoadModule authz_host_module modules/
LoadModule authz_user_module modules/
LoadModule authz_owner_module modules/
LoadModule authz_groupfile_module modules/
LoadModule authz_dbm_module modules/
LoadModule authz_default_module modules/
LoadModule ldap_module modules/
LoadModule authnz_ldap_module modules/
LoadModule include_module modules/
LoadModule log_config_module modules/
LoadModule logio_module modules/
LoadModule env_module modules/
LoadModule ext_filter_module modules/
LoadModule mime_magic_module modules/
LoadModule expires_module modules/
LoadModule deflate_module modules/
LoadModule headers_module modules/
LoadModule usertrack_module modules/
LoadModule setenvif_module modules/
LoadModule mime_module modules/
LoadModule dav_module modules/
LoadModule status_module modules/
LoadModule autoindex_module modules/
LoadModule info_module modules/
LoadModule dav_fs_module modules/
LoadModule vhost_alias_module modules/
LoadModule negotiation_module modules/
LoadModule dir_module modules/
LoadModule actions_module modules/
LoadModule speling_module modules/
LoadModule userdir_module modules/
LoadModule alias_module modules/
LoadModule substitute_module modules/
LoadModule rewrite_module modules/
LoadModule proxy_module modules/
LoadModule proxy_balancer_module modules/
LoadModule proxy_ftp_module modules/
LoadModule proxy_http_module modules/
LoadModule proxy_ajp_module modules/
LoadModule proxy_connect_module modules/
LoadModule cache_module modules/
LoadModule suexec_module modules/
LoadModule disk_cache_module modules/
LoadModule cgi_module modules/
LoadModule version_module modules/
Include conf.d/*.conf
User apache
Group apache
ServerAdmin root@localhost
UseCanonicalName Off
DocumentRoot "/var/www/html"
<Directory />
    Options FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride None
<Directory "/var/www/html">
    Options Indexes FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride None
    Order allow,deny
    Allow from all
<IfModule mod_userdir.c>
    UserDir disabled
DirectoryIndex index.html index.html.var
AccessFileName .htaccess
<Files ~ "^\.ht">
    Order allow,deny
    Deny from all
    Satisfy All
TypesConfig /etc/mime.types
DefaultType text/plain
<IfModule mod_mime_magic.c>
    MIMEMagicFile conf/magic
HostnameLookups Off
ErrorLog logs/error_log
LogLevel warn
LogFormat "%h %l %u %t \"%r\" %>s %b \"%{Referer}i\" \"%{User-Agent}i\"" combined
LogFormat "%h %l %u %t \"%r\" %>s %b" common
LogFormat "%{Referer}i -> %U" referer
LogFormat "%{User-agent}i" agent
CustomLog logs/access_log combined
ServerSignature On
Alias /icons/ "/var/www/icons/"
<Directory "/var/www/icons">
    Options Indexes MultiViews FollowSymLinks
    AllowOverride None
    Order allow,deny
    Allow from all
<IfModule mod_dav_fs.c>
    DAVLockDB /var/lib/dav/lockdb
ScriptAlias /cgi-bin/ "/var/www/cgi-bin/"
<Directory "/var/www/cgi-bin">
    AllowOverride None
    Options None
    Order allow,deny
    Allow from all
IndexOptions FancyIndexing VersionSort NameWidth=* HTMLTable Charset=UTF-8
AddIconByEncoding (CMP,/icons/compressed.gif) x-compress x-gzip
AddIconByType (TXT,/icons/text.gif) text/*
AddIconByType (IMG,/icons/image2.gif) image/*
AddIconByType (SND,/icons/sound2.gif) audio/*
AddIconByType (VID,/icons/movie.gif) video/*
AddIcon /icons/binary.gif .bin .exe
AddIcon /icons/binhex.gif .hqx
AddIcon /icons/tar.gif .tar
AddIcon /icons/world2.gif .wrl .wrl.gz .vrml .vrm .iv
AddIcon /icons/compressed.gif .Z .z .tgz .gz .zip
AddIcon /icons/a.gif .ps .ai .eps
AddIcon /icons/layout.gif .html .shtml .htm .pdf
AddIcon /icons/text.gif .txt
AddIcon /icons/c.gif .c
AddIcon /icons/p.gif .pl .py
AddIcon /icons/f.gif .for
AddIcon /icons/dvi.gif .dvi
AddIcon /icons/uuencoded.gif .uu
AddIcon /icons/script.gif .conf .sh .shar .csh .ksh .tcl
AddIcon /icons/tex.gif .tex
AddIcon /icons/bomb.gif core
AddIcon /icons/back.gif ..
AddIcon /icons/hand.right.gif README
AddIcon /icons/folder.gif ^^DIRECTORY^^
AddIcon /icons/blank.gif ^^BLANKICON^^
DefaultIcon /icons/unknown.gif
ReadmeName README.html
HeaderName HEADER.html
AddLanguage ca .ca
AddLanguage cs .cz .cs
AddLanguage da .dk
AddLanguage de .de
AddLanguage el .el
AddLanguage en .en
AddLanguage eo .eo
AddLanguage es .es
AddLanguage et .et
AddLanguage fr .fr
AddLanguage he .he
AddLanguage hr .hr
AddLanguage it .it
AddLanguage ja .ja
AddLanguage ko .ko
AddLanguage ltz .ltz
AddLanguage nl .nl
AddLanguage nn .nn
AddLanguage no .no
AddLanguage pl .po
AddLanguage pt .pt
AddLanguage pt-BR .pt-br
AddLanguage ru .ru
AddLanguage sv .sv
AddLanguage zh-CN .zh-cn
AddLanguage zh-TW .zh-tw
LanguagePriority en ca cs da de el eo es et fr he hr it ja ko ltz nl nn no pl pt pt-BR ru sv zh-CN zh-TW
ForceLanguagePriority Prefer Fallback
AddDefaultCharset UTF-8
AddType application/x-compress .Z
AddType application/x-gzip .gz .tgz
AddType application/x-x509-ca-cert .crt
AddType application/x-pkcs7-crl    .crl
AddHandler type-map var
AddType text/html .shtml
AddOutputFilter INCLUDES .shtml
Alias /error/ "/var/www/error/"
<IfModule mod_negotiation.c>
<IfModule mod_include.c>
    <Directory "/var/www/error">
        AllowOverride None
        Options IncludesNoExec
        AddOutputFilter Includes html
        AddHandler type-map var
        Order allow,deny
        Allow from all
        LanguagePriority en es de fr
        ForceLanguagePriority Prefer Fallback
BrowserMatch "Mozilla/2" nokeepalive
BrowserMatch "MSIE 4\.0b2;" nokeepalive downgrade-1.0 force-response-1.0
BrowserMatch "RealPlayer 4\.0" force-response-1.0
BrowserMatch "Java/1\.0" force-response-1.0
BrowserMatch "JDK/1\.0" force-response-1.0
BrowserMatch "Microsoft Data Access Internet Publishing Provider" redirect-carefully
BrowserMatch "MS FrontPage" redirect-carefully
BrowserMatch "^WebDrive" redirect-carefully
BrowserMatch "^WebDAVFS/1.[0123]" redirect-carefully
BrowserMatch "^gnome-vfs/1.0" redirect-carefully
BrowserMatch "^XML Spy" redirect-carefully
BrowserMatch "^Dreamweaver-WebDAV-SCM1" redirect-carefully

The only change I made was to add the ServerName.

share|improve this question
What does "it pretty stock" mean? Can you edit that? –  polym Jul 9 '14 at 19:45
What's the output of iptables -nvL? Without -v, the output of iptables -L misses some important fields. –  Gilles Jul 10 '14 at 22:23

3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted
vi /etc/sysconfig/iptables

Have You got

-A INPUT -p tcp -m state --state NEW -m tcp --dport 80 -j ACCEPT

If no add it into filters and

 /etc/init.d/iptables restart

If this won't help I don't know what can help You :)

share|improve this answer

With your output, it's no iptables problem, when your default policy is set to ACCEPT instead of DROP.

You can test that you can connect to port 80:

telnet X.X.X.X 80

Or with BSD's nc:

nc -z X.X.X.X 80 && echo OK || echo FAILED

The problem appears, because of your apache configuration.

share|improve this answer
Apache conf problem. Maybe, but when I do # iptables --flush I am able to connect from my laptop to my VM. I still get the same error, ERROR 403: Forbidden when I attempt to access the web server locally. I am not sure what in the httpd.conf could be wrong since I just installed it with # yum install httpd. –  Red Cricket Jul 9 '14 at 16:31
@RedCricket: Check your DocumentRoot permission, try set Allow from all. –  cuonglm Jul 9 '14 at 16:32
Thanks, but it already has that in the config. –  Red Cricket Jul 9 '14 at 16:44
Can you post your virtual host config? –  cuonglm Jul 9 '14 at 16:46

The directory httpd is accessing is empty and indexing is not configured for it.

When httpd recieves a request for a directory that's empty it returns a directory listing page or a 403 error if indexing isn't enabled.

The version of apache that ships with RHEL/CentOS doesn't include an index.html file in /var/www/html. Instead, a custom error page is served when a request for / is recieved and an index.html isn't found.

My guess is /var/www/html is empty and /var/www/html/error/noindex.html doesn't exist. You're probably receiving a 404 error too but you can't see the HTML when you use wget. Use curl instead to see if any HTML is being sent to you as well.

share|improve this answer
Then why would I be able to access my webserver after I execute iptables --flush? –  Red Cricket Jul 11 '14 at 3:49
Because you're accessing the server from multiple locations and you're getting confused. Bottom line is, if it's a web server issue then you'll receive an HTTP error code. If it's a firewall issue then you won't receive anything, just failed to connect –  Creek Jul 11 '14 at 11:01
Thank you for your response and comments. I am not too concerned being able to access the web server from the web server. –  Red Cricket Jul 12 '14 at 3:39

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