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 AUTHOR
 - don
Joined: 4/23/2009
Msg: 1
Best Firewalls: Software/HardwarePage 1 of 1    
In my opinion:

For Hardware Firewalls(Routers):
>Linksys by Cisco
>SMC Networks


For Softwareware Firewalls:
>ZoneAlarm (the free one is good but requires some of configuration)
>Comodo (the free one is good but requires a lot of configuration)

I'm interested to hear what everyone uses & likes
 N3T_K1LLA
Joined: 11/20/2007
Msg: 2
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/14/2009 4:02:38 AM
Hardware firewall:
Sonicwall

Software firewall:
Pointless.
 chrono1985
Joined: 11/20/2004
Msg: 3
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/14/2009 7:32:32 AM
Cisco firewalls are nice but only if you actually understand how to set one up, those applications that Linksys come with just barely scratch the surface on what those things can do.

My favorite though is this 10 year old garage sale special loaded with my own version of linux under my desk. Cuts my down speed a bit with some of the scanning software on it but worth it so that I don't need to clutter my pc up with software firewalls.
 - don
Joined: 4/23/2009
Msg: 4
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/14/2009 9:26:42 AM


My favorite though is this 10 year old garage sale special loaded with my own version of linux under my desk. Cuts my down speed a bit with some of the scanning software on it but worth it so that I don't need to clutter my pc up with software firewalls.

What distro or linux is it based on?
 whistler21_nn
Joined: 12/19/2008
Msg: 5
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/14/2009 1:25:36 PM
Smoothwall used to be quite popular. Not sure about nowadays...
 fame9999
Joined: 5/4/2009
Msg: 6
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/14/2009 6:16:52 PM
Pf sense.
zonealarm is bloated and uses java code
 phule
Joined: 4/8/2004
Msg: 7
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Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/15/2009 12:55:31 PM
If you ask most people who sing the praises of Firewalls what a firewall actually does, the answer is usually a stumbling "I don't really know".

Both the Windows Firewall and ZoneAlarm do exactly the same thing. Your computer has 65535 ports for network applications. from 0 to 65534. A firewall make sure that the ones that are not in use are blocked, and the ones that are in use, are supposed to be in use. The difference between the windows firewall, and zonealarm, is that ZoneAlarm is very verbose about how it does the job. It reminds you all the time that is is on the job, and asks you all the time if you are REALLY sure you want this program, or that program to be accessing the internet. Sounds great, right?

Unfortunately, I see the actual results of a verbose firewall program and the average user who swears by the program... I have to go in and fix it, after that Average User has blocked Internet Explorer from going through the firewall, after the Average User accidentally blocked the browser by thinking it was something malicious... since there would never be a need for ZoneAlarm (or any other software suite) to block a valid program like IE... right?

All aftermarket firewall software solutions suck. They are just flashier versions of the firewall that comes with Windows. They don't protect any better.
 winterlotus
Joined: 4/29/2009
Msg: 8
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/15/2009 2:46:06 PM
I prefer to have my firewall built into the hardware. It's the first line of defense. I agree, Cisco Systems provides the best networking hardware in the industry. Also, they are very easy to learn and understand. It's not rocket science.


Software seems to be more trouble than not. So I don't have an opinion on that.
 - don
Joined: 4/23/2009
Msg: 9
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/15/2009 4:56:23 PM
Phule-

You have already established that you know very little about networking in your previous post under "Norton unsafe?"

Quote by the All Knowing Phule-


If you ask most people who sing the praises of Firewalls what a firewall actually does, the answer is usually a stumbling "I don't really know".


I have a degree in Computers & Networking and and am currently working toward a dual B.S. in Network Security & Computer Networks. I don't feel the need to act like I know everything about everything but I share what I know on Forums for fun & to help others.




Both the Windows Firewall and ZoneAlarm do exactly the same thing.


Windows firewall is a joke, get a hardware router (built-in firewall)

If you know anything about windows & security and you are still using Internet Exploder......you need to navigate to google (if IE hasn't been hijacked) and do a little research.

& Yes 3rd party software firewalls are better than Windows Firewall

The Ideal is a Good Hardware Firewall and a lightweight software firewall(for wireless). But it seems I have yet to find such a thing for Windows so I recommend ZoneAlarm/Comodo, because it is better than Windows firewall & they actually show you what is going on and what programs have access to what and you can limit program access.
 novelcro
Joined: 1/13/2009
Msg: 10
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/17/2009 9:49:00 AM
Outpost Firewall Free [new software]
http://free.agnitum.com/
 music_fan
Joined: 4/6/2008
Msg: 11
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History
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/17/2009 10:22:32 PM
I like the firewall called Online Armor which can be downloaded from http://www.tallemu.com/free-firewall-protection-software.html , this is the free version of their commercial fireware but it does a very good job.
 sinful4wmn
Joined: 3/12/2008
Msg: 12
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Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/18/2009 10:32:13 AM
Do no have a hardware firewall which I should be ashamed of but that will be taking care of once I get my dual channel Pre-N wireless network router.

Software firewall I would definitely suggest Outpost by Agnitum. I love it although I am using the version 4.0 instead of the 2009 version. Lots of features. Increadible. Can have a difficult learning curve but it so chock full of incredible features for protections that it is worth it. Has built in spyware detector as well and logs intruder attacks as well among other features.
 - don
Joined: 4/23/2009
Msg: 13
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/18/2009 10:58:22 AM
ok, I just picked up a PC World Magazine w/14th annual best free stuff.

They recommend Online Armor Personal Firewall and say "It provides solid protection, but unobtrusively."-PC World May 2009 p.63
>I haven't personally tried it
 buddhabadboy
Joined: 12/8/2008
Msg: 14
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/21/2009 6:23:46 PM
it depends on where you want to install it.
For a small company, shoe string budget, IPCOP is the way to go.
You buy a small cheap P3 system ($75), and download and install it.
industrial strength.

For home?
ipcop or smoothwall.
I've used both, love both. Right now i'm using Smoothwall: has more bells and whistles than ipcop, such as live graphs, etc.

For a larger company? Cisco ASA all the way.

Linksys or d-link for the "non-computer oriented masses"

with regards to the cheap pc installed firewalls?
not all that good, since point of attack is right there.
no front line of defense, and I find most clients get confused with the bells and windows that pop up, asking questions...
 - don
Joined: 4/23/2009
Msg: 15
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/22/2009 3:46:49 AM
I've used Cisco IOS and most of the mainstream 'Home Routers' linksys,netgear,belkin, etc. I also downloaded the iso for ipcop about a year ago but never got around to using it and I've heard good things about smoothwall & pf sense, thanks for the suggestions, I'll have to try them out when I retire another PC to put them on.

When I originally started this thread, I didn't expect so many i.t. guy responses so I geared it toward the home user & I put the software firewalls for wireless PCs and home users who don't want to spend the money on routers. Thanks everyone for sharing your experience/suggestions

Right now I use a wireless Z100 with SofaWare services & I'm happy with it for what I do.
 celar
Joined: 5/16/2009
Msg: 16
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/23/2009 7:28:27 AM
I use a Linksys WWRT54G, with custom firmware called DD-WRT. That handles blocking any incoming, but it is advisable to use a software firewall to ensure none of your software is calling out when it shouldn't be.
 iSeal
Joined: 10/17/2007
Msg: 17
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/24/2009 9:17:49 PM
Software-wise, Comodo on my Windows box, iptables on Linux (with scripts to prevent repeated SSH bruteforcing attacks from the same source.)

I don't see the point of getting a box in the middle for added protection. Perhaps if I was in a corporate environment and wanted more control (ie. prevent outbound spam from an infected machine, packet filtering, etc.), but not on my home network.

The ports accessible from the outside anyways are SSH and bittorrent thanks to the router.
 Agent75
Joined: 3/19/2009
Msg: 18
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 5/27/2009 8:17:22 PM
I use to use Norton, but it was always crashng my laptop, plus you've got to pay something like £40 a year to update it. In the end, I uninstalled it. At the moment, I'm just using Windows Firewall, Windows Defender which are both built-in to Windows Vista, and Spyware Terminator which I downloaded for free. Spyware Terminator is the best free software that I've ever downloaded, I've never had any problems with it. But when it comes to Firewalls, a lot of people have 2 or 3 running at the same time which can cause your Windows to malfuntion (I think you'll all know that anyway). There's a lot of crap out there like Spybot, Adware SE, Virgin PC Guard, Avira, AVG to name a few. It's taken me ages to find software that works OK with my laptop. When I was with AOL years ago, I just used Windows Firewall and Mcafee, I had no problems. You can go on forever asking people what to use as we're all using different internet providers, different Windows etc. It makes you wonder why some software is free... As mentioned, give Spyware Terminator a go. I've read that Windows Firewall aint all that good, but I've been using it for years and it's been OK.

Agent75 :)
 southwestern_Noir
Joined: 10/28/2008
Msg: 19
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 6/7/2009 6:39:04 PM
If you want a gui front end, firestarter is decent, otherwise firehol or shorewall are probably the best bets.

If you are a windows consumer user it's probably not worth paying for one. Go with avast! or free AVG.
 NurbyDriver
Joined: 7/30/2007
Msg: 20
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History
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 6/7/2009 10:39:41 PM
And if you *really* want some geek cred you use Clark Connect as both a gateway AND a server

Add a cheap wireless card and Bob's your uncle, you have wireless for your lappy in the living room :)
 FatNbroke
Joined: 5/26/2009
Msg: 21
Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 6/9/2009 3:01:36 AM
You like free?
You like tested?

http://www.techsupportalert.com/pc/cleanup-tools.html

enjoy
 wallybygolly
Joined: 5/2/2009
Msg: 22
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Best Firewalls: Software/Hardware
Posted: 6/9/2009 10:59:20 AM
I assume we are talking about business-class products?

For large/enterprise/complicated network toplogies, Cisco obviously is the top. Though they have severe limitations and alot of features/software that works really only with other Cisco products. I use their routers alot... not really a huge fan of the PIX firewalls, though they do serve their purpose well. I think there are better alternatives that are easier to setup/configure for alot less money.

In smaller-medium sized networks with a few branch offices, VPN tunnels, etc, I use Watchguard. I have used Sonicwalls and am just not a huge fan, especially the VPN side. I find the Watchguards to be on par with price and have tons more features, especially in the monitoring/reporting side.

Another alternative that I use at client sites is called "Untangle". It runs on a Linux Distro and they have a free version that works really well for home/small business use. Their upgraded versions offer alot more features and are very reasonably priced. I have several running on low pentium 3s and have never had a bottleneck at the server. Plus, you can SSH into the CLI and do all the cool Linux apps on top of it.

Generally for home, I like Linksys firewalls. I wouldn't run a software firewall at all...totally pointless in my opinion.
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