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> Chapter 9 - Firewall > Firewall objects > Schedule Groups

Schedule groups

You can organize multiple firewall schedules into a schedule group to simplify your security policy list. The schedule parameter in the policy configuration does not allow for the entering of multiple schedules into a single policy so if you have a combination of time frames that you want to schedule the policy for then the best approach, rather than making multiple policies is to use a schedule group.


Your Internet policy allows employees to visit Social Media sites from company computers but not during what is considered working hours. The offices are open a few hours before working hours and the doors are not locked until a few hours after official closing so work hours are from 9 to 5 with a lunch break from Noon to 1:00 p.m.

Your approach is to block the traffic between 9 and noon and between 1:00 p.m. and 5:00 p.m. This means you will need two schedules for a single policy and the schedule group handles this for you. Schedule groups can contain both recurring and one-time schedules. Schedule groups cannot contain other schedule groups.

Schedule expiration

The schedule in a security policy enables certain aspects of network traffic to occur for a specific length of time. What it does not do however, is police that time. That is, the policy is active for a given time frame, and as long as the session is open, traffic can continue to flow.

For example, in an office environment, Skype use is allowed between noon and 1pm. During that hour, any Skype traffic continues. As long as that session is open, after the 1pm end time, the Skype conversations can continue, yet new sessions will be blocked. Ideally, the Skype session should close at 1pm.

Using a CLI command you can set the schedule to terminate all sessions when the end time of the schedule is reached. Within the config firewall command enter the command:

set schedule-timeout enable

By default, this is set to disable.