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Author Topic: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall  (Read 3758 times)

Ehtyar

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Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« on: March 01, 2009, 03:32:46 AM »
Hi all.

For a few years now I've been using a discontinued Firewall called Tiny Firewall. Yes yes, I know, using an unsupported non-updated security program bla-bla-bla. Let's just say it served me very well for the past few years.

My problem now becomes the inevitable shift to Vista/Windows 7, and clearly Tiny Firewall won't be able to follow me. What I really liked about Tiny Firewall was that it was extremely anal. It would prompt for use of a potentially dangerous API, access to an important folder/file, access to an important registry key, access to specific internet ports (though you could manually specify port range/individual port/all port access), installation of drivers and BHOs etc, system privileges. It would allow you to permit these actions once, or permit them always.

I'd really like a product with similar capabilities that I can use on Windows 7 and Vista. If anyone has anything they could suggest that might suit me needs I'd really appreciate a reply below. Unfortunately, UAC just doesn't cut it.

Ehtyar.

40hz

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2009, 06:32:14 AM »
Comodo ( www.personalfirewall.comodo.com/firewall.html ) makes one of the 'tightest' free firewall products I've ever used. Set the defense level option to "Paranoid" and you will be notified (in merciless detail) of everything. It does, however, 'train' well and quickly, so once you get past the initial spate of notifications, it settles down quite nicely.

Detailed documentation (211 pages worth!!! :read:) for the current release is available at the following link if you like to read manuals:

http://www.personalf...urity_User_Guide.pdf

Based on personal experience, the manual is worth a selective read if you really want to understand and effectively use this product. Give it a quick skim if nothing else.

The Windows 7 version is still in development, but will be available well in time for Microsoft's official launch.

 8)

f0dder

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2009, 11:38:59 AM »
Built-in Windows Firewall and nothing else :-*

(famous last words).
- carpe noctem

mwb1100

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2009, 02:37:52 PM »
For a few years now I've been using a discontinued Firewall called Tiny Firewall. ... Let's just say it served me very well for the past few years.

If you like Tiny Firewall you might like it's more or less direct descendant. Tiny firewall became Kerio Personal Firewall which in turn became Sunbelt Personal Firewall.  The version you download acts as a trial of the paid version for one month - if you don't register it it reverts to a free version with some of the 'pro' features disabled.

I don't use it so this is not an endorsement - it's just that it seems reasonable that you might find it similar enough to like it (note that it supports Vista, but only the 32-bit version).

cranioscopical

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2009, 03:43:36 PM »
Tiny firewall became Kerio Personal Firewall which in turn became Sunbelt Personal Firewall.

FWIW, I use this on my wife's machine.
It's enough to drive one demented at the outset but it, together with 'Drop My Rights, and 'NoScript', had the desired effect of saving me hours a week of trouble-shooting her machine.

Darwin

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2009, 04:09:49 PM »
I have a licence for Sunbelt Firewall but gave up on it... because it drove me demented at the outset (as Chris notes)! Perhaps I should give it a chance? However, like f0dder, I've never had any trouble using the Windows provided firewall in either flavour (ie XP or Vista). Knock. On. Wood. Ouch!
"Some people have a way with words, other people,... oh... have not way" - Steve Martin

Lashiec

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2009, 04:16:51 PM »
Ya know, app's PesterMe is much more light on resources than any other recommendation I can come up with, and it does the same job (annoying you 'til no end) :P

ThreatFire in its maximum reporting level is as comprehensive as it can be, though the dialogs were usually cryptic for the most obscure warnings (in version 3 at least), and I find myself wondering what the hell was the program reporting about. System Safety Monitor was also quite vocal in its number of warnings, and less anoying (systray popups instead of in-your-face ones), but it seems the program is abandoned and the company developing it went they way of the dodo.

bgd77

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #7 on: March 02, 2009, 01:04:44 AM »
Comodo

With Defence+ or without it?

40hz

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #8 on: March 02, 2009, 10:11:45 AM »
Comodo

With Defence+ or without it?

I've run it both ways. But to be honest, I'm perfectly happy leaving the Defense+ option turned off.

I'm currently running Comodo Firewall (free); the paid version of Avira Antivir; and PC Tools Threatfire (free). I've got Firefox set up with several security add-ons, and I'm hyper-careful about what software gets loaded on my machine. So for my setup, Defense+ is less of a feature to me.

Heuristic threat detectors can only do so much, and they can be pretty intrusive since they are designed to err on the side of caution. These days, if something comes up that makes me suspicious, I'll just fire up a process/port monitor combo and have a look around.

FWIW: My girlfriend is running Window's built-in firewall in conjunction with Avira Antivirus and Threatfire. And to date, she hasn't run into any problems on her machine.

Oh yeah, one other thing...she also makes it a point to stay on top of all her software's security updates.

I suspect that may also be a big help. ;) ;D



« Last Edit: March 02, 2009, 10:18:37 AM by 40hz »

bgd77

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #9 on: March 02, 2009, 10:22:29 AM »
I also consider the Comodo firewall to be one of the best. But I really do not like (or understand) Defence+. So I do not use it. But as a firewall, it is very, very good. (Avira -> it seems to be one of the best antiviruses, I use the free version).

I use Comodo BoClean, but will try Threatfire also.
 




Ehtyar

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Re: Anal Program Monitor/Firewall
« Reply #10 on: March 02, 2009, 05:44:27 PM »
Wow, thanks for all the replies guys. I have a freiend who uses the same firewall and will be trying these out sooner than I. I will report back his findings and mine when I get around to Windows 7 :)

Ehtyar.