February 8th, 2006, 01:19 PM
Good free firewall with features?
Hey, which free firewall is the best now?
I used to use zonealarm, then zonealarm pro for 3 years, then back to zonealarm, and now I am really annoyed at the automatic rules that it is doing, like letting programs through without asking me. Another thing I dont like about it is inability to block specific communications of a program based on IP or port number. Maybe I just dont know what I am doing, but all I see is Allow program/Block program. I remember back in the day when AtGuard was around, and that firewall let you set up specific rules for a program, such as ports and ip addresses... Is there one today, even if it is not free, though that is prefered, that basically works like AtGuard? (And no, I am not getting norton's mutated atguard that takes over your computer)
In summery, port and IP based rules for individual programs and no automatic rule clreation.
February 8th, 2006, 02:20 PM
I use Sygate Personal Firewall. It's the most customizeable free firewall I ever used. I'm not sure if it's still available for download though. Symantec bought it out and has discontinued the product. Try snapfiles.com for the download.
“Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects.” — Will Rogers
February 8th, 2006, 02:28 PM
Yes Sygate Firewall is one of the best firewall available for free.
However, U can also try Black Ice. And Zone Alarm pro isnt that bad either!!
But, in addition to that, start using a ROUTER, doesnt matter if u hav a server or a stand alone machine, by installing a router you can monitor the traffic on your computer. I use it as a measure for keeping check on my security from viruses, trojans, etc.
February 8th, 2006, 04:03 PM
Hrmm.. personally, I wouldn't suggest neither ZoneAlarm nor BlackICE. Both are mediocre at best in traffic monitering or in protecting your machine from external attacks (one of the many purposes of a firewall).
For setting personal rules and permissions, I'd go with either Sygate (have used in the past, not bad..) or Tiny Firewall, each allowing the user to make custom permissions for their needs.
February 9th, 2006, 11:16 AM
As there's no mention of the OS the firewall should run on my vote is for "Best Free Firewall" is OpenBSD's PF.
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.
February 9th, 2006, 11:49 AM
All the free ones seem to have disappeared sure you can get the old versions that used to be available but they are no longer supported/updated, and one wonders about some of the sites that host them.
ZoneAlarm is still there but does not meet the OP's requirements (and check out Spyder's post as well)
There is this one that is supposed to be free:
I haven't actually tried it, but I did read that you can buy the source code and modify it to whatever you want. Hey, I am not recommending this, just mentioning it, as I found it unusual?
February 9th, 2006, 02:06 PM
Yea, unless blackice has become a completely different product than what it was 5 years ago, I am not even looking at it. As far as last version of things like sygate, I dont think it is such a problem to use them, since they have gone through so many iterations already to hopefully have ironed out all the security bugs. I might be wrong on that one, and maybe have a false sense of security about it.. The issue will come up with Longhorn though, since my guess is that old firewalls will no longer function correctly with rewritten net code. Maybe there is a way to disable auto-rules in zonealarm, I dont know, havent found them, but if that is all that will be out there in the future, then I guess thats what I will get. I'll give Sygate a try though.
Personally, my main concern is outgoing protection, since I am behind a router, and in the block of forwarded ports are the things that I have set up myself.
My other concern is for all my friends who get spyware and other junk on their computers, and even though I am pretty sure I get all of the stuff out, I am not 100% certain, so usually I want to install a firewall on their system, and tell them to block anything that doesn't look like some legitimate application that uses the internet (new version of firefox or something). I also tell them to block IE since that is how most of them get the spyware anyway, they just click on silly popups and get bugged... So what annoys me about ZoneAlarm is that it will let IE through by default, and who knows what else it will let through by default, and if the cleint's IE is bugged, and it gets out even once, you might as well start over, cause by the time you kill it, it probably got 500 friends installled...
haha SirDice, yea.. the systems I am talking about are windows boxes
February 9th, 2006, 04:31 PM
IIRC some time ago BlackIce was bought by Checkpoint. AFAIK it's been integrated in their RealSecure package. So I'm pretty sure it has become a different product..
Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.
February 9th, 2006, 05:29 PM
RMSe17, you can block an IP with Zone Alarm, Ive been a tad board today so I made a wee video tutorial to show you how to do it! View it with windows media player in full screen mode!
Its a bit quick but I was limited to 1048576 bytes to attach it to this post!
Turn off smart defence advisor to stop it auto allowing programs internet access.
In the video I have block someone with the IP address of 100.100.100.100 completley from trying to access my computer on any port.
//yup i was board!! I downloaded the software yesterday and was tring to think what I could do with it! voila!
February 9th, 2006, 10:28 PM
Just my two cents, I had a problem with sygate, and even though there are some lovely feelgood features on it that do work well, I found zone alarm and sam spade did the job just as well.
I found sygate, well it didn't quite do what I had hoped. The reason I went is because zone alarm use to show all separate parts of programs, for example, you used to be able to run things like real player and disable the part that desparately wants to connect to the internet, but in later versions of zone alarm, it has all been amalgamated into one thing now, so you don't have that nice control. Still works well though.
So anyway, when I tryed sygate, I found it no better on that front, so after a while went back to zone alarm, but something flipped out on me, to the point that my pc was unuseable once fully booted up. It just blue screened on me and one I did not know either.
When I figured out it was the sygate firewall I had to go into explorer as quick as I could to get rid of the offending file, whose name I can't remember now. Sorry about that.
But mine is not the only case. Use it by all means, but be so carefull when you uninstall it, it messes with one of the OS files I think, and I think it is one of those files that windows puts back if it can't find, but stops windows running if it is there and corrupted. If I find out which one I will post it up, but you have to back this file up, so you can put it back when sygate is uninstalled, or so that windows will do it for you.
So as a result I shy away from programs that make me cry.
I do hope this post makes sense to someone with more know how than me.
Sarcasm is a way of life