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Windows 7: MSE and Zone Alarm

28 Feb 2010   #11
JonM33

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by HJA View Post
Here is a response from MS that dates back to Oct 09 from the ZA forum. This trouble as you can see goes back to Vista

Quote:
Unfortunately, you will run into problems running MSE with Zone Alarm, due to an issue in Windows Vista and above.
A possible solution would be to uninstall either Zone Alarm or MSE (I would recommend Zone Alarm, since Windows Vista already has a built in firewall)

We are actively working to identify a fix for this issue.
You should not be seeing any issues on Windows XP.

Sincerely,
Shiroy Choksey [MSFT]
Quote:
Numerous posts "all over" regarding MSE and ZA point to more circumstances of user error.
This is not something that just happens out of the blue, it is a compatability issue with ZA and MSE. As you can see above it has been about 6 months since the response. I happen to like ZA and will continue to use it. As for blame, if two products don't get along I go with the one I like. As for MSE I have seen good and bad reviews. As I said the problems are well documented. Nuff said. End post. Sorry I offended.
Does it occur with MSE and Comodo Firewall? Does it happen with MSE and Windows Firewall? Do you see a trend?

Windows Firewall has had outbound configuration since Windows Vista. There is no need for ZA in my book.

Just for settling this. I'll go ahead and install Windows 7 in a VM and see if I can reproduce the problem as well. I will get back to you.


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28 Feb 2010   #12
Subsonic

Windows7 x64 7600 16385
 
 

Using ZoneAlarm with Avast 5. Great combination! Great price (free)!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2010   #13
JonM33

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by HJA View Post
This is not something that just happens out of the blue, it is a compatability issue with ZA and MSE. As you can see above it has been about 6 months since the response. I happen to like ZA and will continue to use it. As for blame, if two products don't get along I go with the one I like. As for MSE I have seen good and bad reviews. As I said the problems are well documented. Nuff said. End post. Sorry I offended.
Okay, I should stand corrected then.

In a VM with Windows 7 fresh install + all updates/patches...

Windows 7 + MSE + ZoneAlarm Firewall = Hang after reboot. Had to use safe mode to uninstall ZA. After that everything works fine.
Windows 7 + MSE + Windows Firewall = Works fine.
Windows 7 + MSE + Comodo Firewall = Works fine.

So it seems to be a software issue with ZoneAlarm. You can't blame MSE on this if it works with 2 other known firewalls.
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28 Feb 2010   #14
neo101

WIN7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Zonealarm says their progs for download are all still in beta for WIN 7 and they are getting a real slagging on firewall test reviews at the moment.

Just have to wait till they get their act together again.

I like having visual control over what software/items are trying to 'dial out'
(unlike Msoft firewall which doesn't block anfink outbound till u tell it to - Polar Bear) and I have a Z.A. update license too.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2010   #15
BugMeister

Windows10 Pro - 64Bit vs.10547
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by polarbear View Post
With MSE use Windows 7 Firewall Control to top off the firewall provided with Windows 7... You will likely never look back...
..I'll drink to that!!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2010   #16
JonM33

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by neo101 View Post
Zonealarm says their progs for download are all still in beta for WIN 7 and they are getting a real slagging on firewall test reviews at the moment.

Just have to wait till they get their act together again.

I like having visual control over what software/items are trying to 'dial out'
(unlike Msoft firewall which doesn't block anfink outbound till u tell it to - Polar Bear) and I have a Z.A. update license too.
Then why use ZoneAlarm? It was notorious for doing just that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2010   #17
CarlTR6

Windows 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JonM33 View Post
Windows Firewall has had outbound configuration since Windows Vista. There is no need for ZA in my book.
Yes, Windows Fire wall has outbound configuration - if one is a Geek. It is most certainly NOT simple nor intuitive. I tried PC Tools firewall and it worked well. But it was not quite as flexible as I prefer. I am now using Comodo. It is nice as easy to to use as is ZA; but now that I'm learning it, I can easily manage outbound traffic.

I am behind a router and hardware firewall (which is far better). I use a software firewall to easily manage outgoing. If Windows firewall was easy to configure for outgoing, I would be using it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Feb 2010   #18
JonM33

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CarlTR6 View Post
Yes, Windows Fire wall has outbound configuration - if one is a Geek. It is most certainly NOT simple nor intuitive.
How is it not simple? Open the Windows Firewall with Advanced Security, select Outbound Rules, select New Rule and configure it from there. You can set it for programs, ports or even custom rules. It's extremely easy and much better than a pop-up asking you if you want one of a hundred apps to access the internet. Comodo and ZoneAlarm are worse than UAC.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CarlTR6 View Post
I am behind a router and hardware firewall (which is far better). I use a software firewall to easily manage outgoing. If Windows firewall was easy to configure for outgoing, I would be using it.
It is easy to configure. See above. If you know how to configure a hardware firewall then the Windows Firewall will be just as easy for you.

Quick plug: Special Report: Security: Deconstructing Common Security Myths
Myth: Host-Based Firewalls Must Filter Outbound Traffic to be Safe.
Speaking of host firewalls, why is there so much noise about outbound filtering? Think for a moment about how ordinary users would interact with a piece of software that bugged them every time a program on their computer wanted to communicate with the Internet. What would such a dialog box look like? "The program NotAVirus.exe wants to communicate on port 34235/tcp to address 207.46.225.60 on port 2325/tcp. Do you want to permit this?" Ugh! How would your grandmother answer that dialog box? Thing is, your grandmother just got an e-mail with an attachment that promises some rather sexy naked dancing pigs. Then this crazy dialog box appears. We promise: when the decision is between being secure and watching some naked dancing pigs, the naked dancing pigs win every time.

The fact is, despite everyone’s best efforts, outbound filtering is simply ignored by most users. They just don’t know how to answer the question. So why bother with it? Outbound filtering is too easy to bypass, too. No self-respecting worm these days will try to communicate by opening its own socket in the stack. Rather, it’ll simply wait for the user to open a Web browser, then hijack that connection. You’ve already given the browser permission to communicate, and the firewall has no idea that a worm has injected traffic into the browser’s stream.

Outbound filtering is only useful on computers that are already infected. And in that case, it’s too late—the damage is done. If instead you do the right things to ensure that your computers remain free of infection, outbound filtering does nothing for you other than, perhaps, to give you a false sense of being more secure. Which, in our opinion, is worse than having no security at all.
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01 Mar 2010   #19
CarlTR6

Windows 7 Ultimate 32 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JonM33 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CarlTR6 View Post
Yes, Windows Fire wall has outbound configuration - if one is a Geek. It is most certainly NOT simple nor intuitive.
How is it not simple? Open the Windows Firewall with Advanced Security, select Outbound Rules, select New Rule and configure it from there. You can set it for programs, ports or even custom rules. It's extremely easy and much better than a pop-up asking you if you want one of a hundred apps to access the internet. Comodo and ZoneAlarm are worse than UAC.
It is the "New Rule and configure it from there" that I have not learned how to do. ZA, Comodo, and PCTools present me with a list of apps and services accessing the internet. That makes it easy to configure with out writing a rule for each app and service. This is what I was referring to about not being a Geek.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by CarlTR6 View Post
I am behind a router and hardware firewall (which is far better). I use a software firewall to easily manage outgoing. If Windows firewall was easy to configure for outgoing, I would be using it.
Quote:
It is easy to configure. See above. If you know how to configure a hardware firewall then the Windows Firewall will be just as easy for you.
I am just learning about which ports do what. My hardware firewall is easy to configure because it presents me with a list of option as do ZA, Comodo, and PCTools. I do not have the knowledge and experience to write these rules. But I am learning. The attached image shows my hardware firewall settings.

Quote:
Quick plug: Special Report: Security: Deconstructing Common Security Myths
Myth: Host-Based Firewalls Must Filter Outbound Traffic to be Safe.
Speaking of host firewalls, why is there so much noise about outbound filtering? Think for a moment about how ordinary users would interact with a piece of software that bugged them every time a program on their computer wanted to communicate with the Internet. What would such a dialog box look like? "The program NotAVirus.exe wants to communicate on port 34235/tcp to address 207.46.225.60 on port 2325/tcp. Do you want to permit this?" Ugh! How would your grandmother answer that dialog box? Thing is, your grandmother just got an e-mail with an attachment that promises some rather sexy naked dancing pigs. Then this crazy dialog box appears. We promise: when the decision is between being secure and watching some naked dancing pigs, the naked dancing pigs win every time.

The fact is, despite everyone’s best efforts, outbound filtering is simply ignored by most users. They just don’t know how to answer the question. So why bother with it? Outbound filtering is too easy to bypass, too. No self-respecting worm these days will try to communicate by opening its own socket in the stack. Rather, it’ll simply wait for the user to open a Web browser, then hijack that connection. You’ve already given the browser permission to communicate, and the firewall has no idea that a worm has injected traffic into the browser’s stream.


Except one can block that dialog box from appearing not giving a user the choice.

Quote:
Outbound filtering is only useful on computers that are already infected. And in that case, it’s too late—the damage is done. If instead you do the right things to ensure that your computers remain free of infection, outbound filtering does nothing for you other than, perhaps, to give you a false sense of being more secure. Which, in our opinion, is worse than having no security at all.
I tend to agree with this. A visitor inadvertently introduced a Trojan to my XP system. Because of the ZA dialog box, I was able to catch it quickly before it spread or phoned home. And I was able to get rid of it easily. It paid off for me. That is why I am so adamant about outgoing control.

I also used outgoing control to block to block XP's MS genuine advantage from phoning home every time I rebooted. Every now and then I would let it through.

I have nothing against Windows firewall and as I learn to write those rules, I will probably use it. The programmers for whatever reason did not make it easy nor intuitive to configure outgoing. Was this by design to make it difficult to prevent MS apps from phoning home as I did with genuine advantage? Just kidding; I'm not a conspiracy theorist. What I want is the ability to make outgoing apps ask me to connect - at least the first time. In some cases, I want to asked every time like I did with genuine advantage. This is why I am using Comodo.



Attached Thumbnails
MSE and Zone Alarm-capture.jpg  
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01 Mar 2010   #20
Jacee
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate 32bit SP1
 
 

Have you 'allowed' all settings for MSE in ZoneAlarm? Click on the program control (programs) and see if MSE has a green checkmark in the boxes.
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 MSE and Zone Alarm




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