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Windows 7: Do you recommend Windows Firewall?

12 Oct 2011   #1
FerchogtX

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 64-bit Build 7600 / Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP3
 
 
Do you recommend Windows Firewall?

Hi again guys

Recently, I had some issues using ESET Smart Security (Version 4.x), basically its firewall gave me some problems when sharing folders and files between all my PC's (2 with Windows 7, one more using Windows 2000). Since the begining I realized that using 2 firewalls at the same time was not a wise idea... so I wanted to disable Windows Firewall and stay with ESET's one... but networking was not working as spected, beginning with the fact that, if you change the conection type (From restricted to allow file sharing and vice-versa) you need to restart everytime so you can actually see the PC which is sharing files with you... Other issue was that if I disable windows firewall, the network type configurations are not saved... lets say you set public network and you dont wnat to share files there, so you deactivate all file sharing capabilities in there, but in private you allow all sharing options. If you deactivate Windows Firewall, this settings are not saved or reset...

So, being anoyed with this, I decided to enable Windows Firewall for all network connections, and then I disabled ESET one... it was no use for me to keep that one enabled if it was giving so much troubles with W7 (I did this on both W7 PC's I have... my desktop and laptop)... In my XP era I just disabled Windows Firewall, then the whole service and ESET Firewall was working wonders in there... but this is not XP anymore.

So, after this long story, I would ask you if it is recommended by you just using Windows Firewall, Windows 7 has several improvements in security and is not the same as XP, and I can see it by the way it handles networking now... but it's always wise to ask for your advice since you know more than me in this terms

Another question should be, if this suffices my needs, is there a recomended configuration to be safer using Windows Firewall? (I mean, if i don't need to tweak it so it doesn't allow some king of incoming acceses, or outgoing...)

Thanks in advance for your answers and advices

See ya!!!


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12 Oct 2011   #2
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I have yet to have a need for any third party firewalls with Vista or Windows 7.
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12 Oct 2011   #3
gautam7

windows 7 ultimate 32 bit
 
 

I personally don't use windows 7 firewall and does not recomend it either because by default its outbound protection is disabled and IMO its very difficult to configure it properly for outbound connection. Other 3rd party firewall are much easier to use. If you want to use windows firewall then you should use it with firewall control from sphinx. Windows7FirewallControl: Sphinx Software which will give you control. Also get behind a router with hardware firewall which will increase your security.

Hope this helps
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12 Oct 2011   #4
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gautam7 View Post
I personally don't use windows 7 firewall and does not recomend it either because by default its outbound protection is disabled and IMO its very difficult to configure it properly for outbound connection.
Many of us don't really care about outbound connections. I'm in that camp.
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12 Oct 2011   #5
DBone

Windows 7 Home Premium x64 SP1
 
 

The W7 firewall is more than sufficient, especially when paired with a NAT router firewall which does most of the heavy lifting anyway. Most users don't need outbound notification, they just think they do! If you are one of them, then a 3rd party firewall, or one of the 3rd party W7 firewall enhancers are your best bet because W7's firewall is a pain to configure.
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12 Oct 2011   #6
gautam7

windows 7 ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by pparks1 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gautam7 View Post
I personally don't use windows 7 firewall and does not recomend it either because by default its outbound protection is disabled and IMO its very difficult to configure it properly for outbound connection.
Many of us don't really care about outbound connections. I'm in that camp.
But thats a bit risky because if a firewall does not have outbound protection that means they can't control what information leaves your computer. so if a malware gets through your defences and the firewall don't monitor your outbound connection then its free to communicate your personal data. May i ask why you don't care about outbound connection?
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12 Oct 2011   #7
DBone

Windows 7 Home Premium x64 SP1
 
 

While that possibility exists, it it so rare for me, that I am not willing to answer multiple questions about "system is trying to connect to the internet". Risk vs reward....Not worth it for me.
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12 Oct 2011   #8
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gautam7 View Post
May i ask why you don't care about outbound connection?
Well, I use a hardware based firewall which stops all unwanted in-bound traffic. I use an AV on my machine, malware bytes scans as well as Spyware Blaster. My AV never goes off, malware bytes never really finds anything. I run my box with UAC on. I don't use pirated software, warez sites, p2p's, or anything of the sort. If I do search for something on the web that is questionable, I either use a Linux machine (either vm or physical) or I use sandboxie.

So, in my personal world, I don't get malware..so there isn't that much to really protect going outbound.

And in my places of businesses, we almost have universally allowed outbound traffic to the internet without concern.

I've tried some 3rd party tools, like Comodo and Norton and I just find that when it squawks about outbound traffic, it's always a program trying to update or send some basic usage statistics...and I'm fine with those types of things. So, I'd rather not be bothered telling everything that it's ok. It's more of a pain that the gain is worth.
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12 Oct 2011   #9
gautam7

windows 7 ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Quote:
Well, I use a hardware based firewall which stops all unwanted in-bound traffic. I use an AV on my machine, malware bytes scans as well as Spyware Blaster. My AV never goes off, malware bytes never really finds anything. I run my box with UAC on. I don't use pirated software, warez sites, p2p's, or anything of the sort. If I do search for something on the web that is questionable, I either use a Linux machine (either vm or physical) or I use sandboxie.
Well i must agree you have a very tight security arrangement, i personally like the concept of virtualization and sandboxing to remain safe. But your first post only said you use only windows firewall and never had problem which migt have given OP about wrong conception that only windows firewall can keep him safe. I am trying to say is we don't know what OP do in his machine and what are his security arrangment so i have pointed about the weakness about the windows firewall and now as your second post explains why some one don't need outbound protection because of use of layered approach. Now i think OP has all the necessary info to decide if he need or does not need windows firewall.

I personally like to have control over what software connect to internet and when i installed online armor during installation i opted the option trust everything ( Since i installed OA in a freah install) and now it does not bother me with too many notification.
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12 Oct 2011   #10
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gautam7 View Post
But your first post only said you use only windows firewall and never had problem which migt have given OP about wrong conception that only windows firewall can keep him safe.
Actually I said that I haven't had a need for any third party firewalls. And I don't. I use other security software and take other measures, but not 3rd party firewalls.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gautam7 View Post
Now i think OP has all the necessary info to decide if he need or does not need windows firewall.
Yes, we have given the OP more information so he/she can make a better personal decision.
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 Do you recommend Windows Firewall?




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