Finally, after all these years I finally have found a software firewall I like.
In debating the pros & cons of a hardware versus software firewall, let's be clear...generally speaking, a hardware firewall is usually superior to a software based one.
The choices if you want a hardware firewall are to buy one (and they are usually outrageously expensive, or if you are up to it...build your own
The problem for me is I'm cheap and lazy.
Seriously though, for what I and most people use a computer for...a software firewall is more than enough. The problem with software firewalls is almost all of the ones still on the market are junk, and the first person that says "ZoneAlarm" I'm going to slap them.
I'm going to say this one time and one time only. I HATE ZONEALARM.
I've tried ZoneAlarm for years, and I truly hate the thing. I keep reading year after year, of supposed computer "pros" that love the thing. I keep thinking maybe I just got a bad copy, or that I didn't give it long enough before I removed the dang thing.
I keep reading about ZoneAlarm's "learning curve" and that after awhile it quits squawking and settles down. The current version of ZoneAlarm I've had for over a year and it still hadn't shut up.
Anyway, I happened upon a new firewall last week and I love it!
The Comodo firewall is great, and best of all...it's free! No kidding, it's not only free but blows most costly firewalls out of the water.
Features & Benefits of Comodo Firewall Pro
- Application Component Authentication - validates all the components of an application before allowing it internet access.
- Application Behavior Analysis - analyzes each application behavior and detects any suspicious activity before allowing internet access.
- Defense against Trojan Protocols - advanced protocol driver level protection
- Smart Alerts - Every alert includes a Security Consideration section with advice to users.
- Windows Security Center Integration - Windows XP SP2 recognizes Comodo Firewall Pro
- Self Protection against Critical Process Termination - cannot be shut down by Trojans, Spyware or viruses.
- PC Security during PC Start Up - includes the option to secure the host while the operating system is booting.
- Automatic Updater - includes an interactive automatic updater component so that users can check for updates any time.
- Error Reporting Interface - includes an XP style bug reporting interface.
- Firewall Logging - reveals all the activities with detailed descriptions of the events.
- Security Rules Interface - combines with an easy to use GUI.
- Application Activity Control - watches each application in detail by showing addresses, ports and amount of traffic.
- Graphical User Interface - enables or disables any part of the firewall with one click
- Application Recognition Database - recognizes over 10000 applications and determines their security risks.
And like ZoneAlarm, the Comodo Firewall not only watches what comes into your computer, but what goes out as well, such as programs trying to "phone home" without asking for permission. But unlike ZoneAlarm, the Comodo Firewall does stop chattering quickly (1-2 days).
Good stuff...I just can't believe it free.