Monthly Archives: May 2015

Creating a Fortigate Virtual IP – External to internal Port Forwarding

Hello, I noticed one thing I have never created a blog entry on creating a Virtual IP to allow access from the internet into a local server. This entry is for  a VIP and Policy creation on firmware 5.2> . Remember all the best documentation is located at

So what is a VIP, a Virtual IP is one way to allow external traffic going to a Public address to be forwarded in to a Local server with a Private address. Basically, its a NAT object consisting of external IP and port and  Internal IP and port. Before this firewall will allow traffic to access the NAT object (VIP) it needs to have a Firewall policy allowing the destined traffic to the VIP.

So, lets create a VIP. First lets navigate to Policy & Objects, Objects, and Virtual IPs. Lets create a new object.


Now, lets input the information needed to have external connections reach our internal network. In this example my outside web server listening address is (my fake public IP) , my internal web server at and my answering interface (the interface accepting connections) is WAN1 (QXnet). So, start out naming the VIP something that will have meaning to you. Then select the incoming interface, and apply the correct IP information. You will then have the option to do a port forward (1 port or a range forwarded into the server), or a 1-1 nat, where all ports are forwarded. If you do a Port Forward, select the protocol, and then set the ports.


In this example I am allowing port 80 on my public IP to be forwarded to port 80 on my private server.

Great, we have created the VIP object. But, as of now no traffic will be allowed to go to the private server. We have to add a Firewall policy to allow that traffic to the VIP.

Lets navigate to Policy & Objects, Policy, IPV4 then create a new policy.

Below shows the settings. The settings read like this : Incoming Interface – This would be where traffic is coming from, in this case the WAN1 interface. Source address: this would be the actual address its coming from, in this case it could be anyone on the internet, so I will select all. Source users, and devices can be left blank. Outgoing interface: this is were the traffic is going, in this case its going to my server located on my LAN interface. Destination address, this is the tricky part. The destination address will be the VIP you created. In 5.2 notice the ICON. Its different then normal address objects, thus specifying, if your name didn’t, that this is a VIP.  You then have to specify the server you want to allow in, I am creating the VIP to allow HTTP into the network, so I will only specify HTTP traffic to be allowed in.

For traffic coming into the firewall we do not need to NAT this traffic, please turn this off. In 5.2> it is on by default when you create a policy.

If you require any UTM features to be on, this is the time.


That’s It! Fortinet makes it very easy to create these VIPs.

If you are not sure if your VIP is working, there are many ways to check/troubleshoot. One way would be to test it, does your server answer? You can also do an online port scan using any many tools online. you can also check the hit counts on the policy (See below). The hit counter should be there by default, but if not add it in by right clicking on the tool bar and selecting Count as one of your columns. I have used the hit counter many times to troubleshoot my VIPs not working. For example, if I try to access my server VIA the public IP, and I get hit on my policy – I know that everything is correct on my VIP. I will then make sure my ports/server settings are correct. You could also do more advanced troubleshooting like debugging the traffic, or do a packet capture on the firewall.