Port forwarding is the act of forwarding traffic destined to a particular network port on a machine, to somewhere else - either another port, on a port on another machine.

Common uses:

  • allowing an Internet connected user to connect to a port on a private IP address behind a NAT (see PinHoling)
  • using SSH to create a tunnel, allowing you to access a port you wouldn't normally be able to reach (see the "Port forwarding" section of our SSHNotes)

See also: