Help in choosing a good Firewall

Discussion in 'other firewalls' started by dandino, Aug 25, 2002.

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  1. dandino

    dandino Registered Member

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    Hi all

    Can someone please help me in chooding a good firewall. I'm looking for a very flexible one ie one that allows rules. I used to use AtGuard ver 3.22 which was fantasticly flexible, however it fails to run on my new Notebook with broadband cable modem - probably because that version of AtGuard is a little old now. Therefore I am looking for something similar but a little more modern that should run OK.

    If anyone can suggest a good alternative or why AtGuard doesn't work on my notebook (when I install it and reboot my computer just hangs with a black screen and never loads windows) I would be very grateful.

    dandino
     
  2. controler

    controler Guest

    Symantec bought @guard along time ago and have it as their firewall.

    I have been trying out a bunch a different software firewalls and for the most part , they are all the same.
    I do however like those that are password protected.
    I like Outpost and Kerio. I have had some real serious uninstall issues with Zone Alarm..
     
  3. Mr.Blaze

    Mr.Blaze The Newbie Welcome Wagon

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    Go for kerio all the big security players here are playing with it=)

    Id go for it my self lol but i dont want to go threw that whole zone alarm uninstall procedure algain=)

    oh oh here come the smites lol lol lo, lol lol lol what it the truth oh well bad cyber cookies=) yum yum
     
  4. jvmorris

    jvmorris Registered Member

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    Hey, if you could set up and secure AtGuard, you should be able to use any of the rules-based software firewalls out there today. In other words, it primarily boils down to a question of which invocation (most likely user interface) you're most comfortable with.

    Symantec's NIS/NPF is based on the core AtGuard technology, but the current user interface is so completely different (not to mention the size of the application) that a lot of old AG users won't go near it.

    For a while at least, Tiny looked like a rip-off of AG, and many old AG users went there. However, the latest renditions of Tiny and (now) Kerio apparently have sufficiently different interfaces from what you're accustomed to with AG that this may also require a bit of the old paradigm shift for you.

    Sygate, Outpost, Look N Stop are a bit more different, but they all still offer the same basic functionality that you are already accustomed to with AG.

    In some (oh, hell -- ALL) of these apps, you're going to find some new functionality and some old AG functionality missing. But the devil is in the details. Some of them cover a few more TCP/IP protocols. Some of them will create rules (of varying degrees of customization) for you automatically (and some will allow you to then further customize these rules whereas others won't). For me, reporting options remain a big consideration, so don't ignore that issue, either, if it is of concern to you.

    I don't recommend/promote any of the various software firewalls; I simply made my own (personal) choice and I stick with it. My vendor regularly pisses me off and I bitch like hell. Some you win, some you don't. I think my attitude is best summarized as "Better the devil you know than the devil you don't".

    Almost all of the software firewalls available today are either free or at least have something like a 30-day trial. Take your time, work your way through them, find one you really like -- and then stick with it.
     
  5. UNICRON

    UNICRON Technical Expert

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    D@mn that's some good advice Joseph!
     
  6. taba

    taba Registered Member

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    dandino,

    Here's a couple of articles/charts that might help. I haven't found any recent, unbiased comparative reviews at security sites. I'd love to find more good comparisons.

    PCWorld's recent comparison of many personal firewalls http://www.pcworld.com/features/article/0,aid,97430,pg,5,00.asp.

    Outposts' comparative matrix (a bit biased, but still good info)
    http://www.agnitum.com/php_scripts/compare.php

    I bought NIS and was very disappointed for too many reasons to list here. I can't recommend it unless you are a masochist. And if you have to support others who use it, you'd better be a sadist too. ;)
     
  7. jvmorris

    jvmorris Registered Member

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    Now, taba! :'(

    Of the vendor-provided comparison, I would have to say that at Agnitum (last time I checked) was one of the least-biased.

    And, inasmuch, as I do both use and support others who use NIS/NPF/AG (but somehow have never quite considered myself as either a masochist or a sadist), I'm gonna have to demand a bit more explanation on that statement! ;)
     
  8. taba

    taba Registered Member

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    Ha! I didn't phrase that very well. I should have said that the Agnitum comparative matrix might be a bit biased since they created it in part to promote their own firewall. It's still great info whether it is or isn't. It's much more detailed than other matrices I found.

    I'm too crazed and tired at the moment to elaborate in detail on the NIS negative impression so I'll be blunt. At the very least, I found it irritating that it didn't install with safe defaults, took entirely too much time to configure properly and maintain, hogged system resources, and the support was truly abysmal. And I am not about to pay an additional $29.95 per incident or $2.95 per min for support that should be offered through their website or email but in my experience, wasn't. The poor support was the final straw. At times it seems like a choice between the lesser of many evils when it comes to support, tho. ;)

    Others have had great experiences with NIS - I haven't. All I can say is figure out what's important to you and research each firewall based on those parameters. I like the matrix approach myself so provided the links to those above. Hope someone finds it helpful.
     
  9. jvmorris

    jvmorris Registered Member

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    Agreed. And (unlike many other similar presentations), it's reasonably up-to-date in terms of the currently available features of the competition. (Some of the other vendors' similar displays are as much as two years out of date and compare apples and oranges, if they can find a way to do it. To the guys at Agnitum, I can't over-emphasize the importance of keeping this matrix up to date with respect to your competitors' currently available releases.)
    No great rush, but I hope you will come back when you're rested and have the time and outline (in a bit more detail) the above issues. I think it might best be addressed in a new thread here at Wilders (preferably in the firewalls forum). Not to worry; you'll get plenty of support! :D No point in dwelling on the tech support issue, however; the only people that don't realize Symantec has a tech support problem apparently work for Symantec and think they've got the greatest support available anywhere from anybody. (Me? I think Symantec needs to have the EPA check out the water and air quality in their facilities out in California.)
    Damn! Somebody owes me a lot of money!
    Can't argue with anything you've said in this last quote excerpt. Like you, I find the matrix presentation of features quite useful. (Especially when it's honestly done.)

    Come on back on this subject whenever you wish (but, again, preferably in a distinct thread). I haven't trashed anybody in a long time and I don't intend to do so now. Furthermore, I suspect you'll get a lot of support. I'm mostly trolling for issues that I can ram down Symantec's throat before they release NIS/NPF 2003 (which is real soon now), so don't procrastinate, okay?
     
  10. morph000

    morph000 Guest

    Good to see Symantec bashing isn't dead ;)

    I use NIS2002 Pro and find it to nothing short of excellent in all respects. Everything works as it should, it passed every test thrown at it, it doesn't screw up sites like ZAP does, doesn't hog resources or memory, the free online support (gone now!?) was great etc etc.
    I've tried all the others and in my opinion NIS2002 wins hands down.
    Oh, and it also passed the icsalabs testing too...
     
  11. yodafan

    yodafan Guest

    Here it goes really simple, based on my opinion i think these would be the best...

    Free application firewall: Zonealarm
    Free rule base firewall: Outpost
    Pay for firewall (rule based): Norton Internet Security

    If u learn how to configure rule base firewall, go for them. If not stick to applications... then switch over when u figure it out. By all means, if u need help configuring a rule u can ask us, someone here will help ;). Can always try using a Combo, lol. May may not approve, but an application and a rule base firewall, but having one simple firewall and one complicated one. Btw outpost doesn't not work well with ne other firewalls, so u would not be able to do that.

    YODA
     
  12. claire

    claire Guest

    Hi,
    Give a try to LooknStop firewall.I think you will not be
    disappointed :)
     
  13. octogen

    octogen Registered Member

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    I use Kerio and like very much. It is light on resources and like any typical rule-based firewall, allows tight controls. I think it is the best free rule-based firewall out there. I have used the trial version of Look N Stop and was very impressed. It too allows tight controls and is very light on resources. Maybe when finances allow, I will purchase it. If you are uncomfortable with creating rules, and want good out-of-box protection, Sygate Free would be my choice. Though it offers good out-of-box protection, it is also flexible enough to allow tight controls. This may be good, if later on you learn more about ports, IP adresses and protocols. I have tried Zone Alarm Free and had no problems until I wanted to uninstall it. I followed the uninstall directions on the website and found it to be no small feat.
     
  14. claire

    claire Guest

    You can use LooknStop(with enhanced ruleset) right"out-off-the box") with no problem at all and a first grade
    security
     
  15. octogen

    octogen Registered Member

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    Very true. If I were, or as in my case, were able to go the payware route, Look N Stop would undoubtedly be my choice. ;)
     
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