I do not know all of the history of m0n0wal, so let me start when I started, back in 2005. I was providing Internet access in hotels, and the gateways available at that point were garbage. And expensive garbage at that! I was spending $800 a pop for things that did not work, had poor support, and burned out quickly... Then I found m0n0wall. It did not have all of the features I needed, but even without them, it was still a more stable solution then the junk on the open market. So in the spirit of open source, I decided to help develop the things I needed. Yes, m0n0wall was "my first" and you never forget your first...
I started working with Jonathan de Graeve to revamp the captive portal to be fully WISPr compliant. Since then, he has gone on to become a well respected network architect.
I realized that one of the barriers to easy development was the fact that installing FreeBSD4 was hard... So I started work on the Virtual M0n0wall Development Environment. I used a lot of documentation developed by Michael Iedema. He later went on to found Askozia, which was converted to Linux after a substantial outside investment. He later went on to Silicon Vally to work for Range Networks.
Chris Buechler was the first to host vmde on his website, and it is actually still there! It is a simple FreeBSD4 install with GUI and shell tools that runs in QEMU on Windows 98, or just about anything else. But not modern KVM... And Chris is the founder of pfSense, BSDperimeter, and co-founder of Electric Sheep Fencing.
I am not saying that Manual Kasper's guidance created all of these tech luminaries... But I am sure all of them learned a lot from m0n0wall development. I know that I did!
- Lee Sharp
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