Notes from firewall trials by one ordinary user with a Windows 98 PC Percentages are readings from the Resource Meter taken under similar conditions on one Windows 98 PC. Higher is better. Kerio Personal Firewall 2.1.4 (+) 80/91% resources free ( ) 2.1 MB download (-) Reportedly has a problem with Unix SMTP/POP3 servers---they ask for IDENT; Kerio filters IDENT requests and never sends back a reply, resulting in a delay while connecting to the mail server. See http://www.blarp.com/faq/faqmanager.cgi?file=kerio_other&toc=kerio#q2 MTS.net, M.B.'s primary mail server, uses Unix apparently. Sygate 5.0 ( ) 79/88% resources free (-) 5 MB download (-) Rather complex UI (-) Registration (mild) (-) Interferes with ScanDisk, which restarts ad infinitum. ZoneAlarm doesn't. Don't know about the others. (-) A security hole requires manual patch (+) Otherwise, works perfectly on M.B.'s PC Look 'n' Stop Lite 1.04 ( ) 78/90% resources free (+) 356K download; 340K installation folder (-) No application filtering; incoming only. Cf. WinXP's firewall and BlackIce. (-) PCFlank showed ports "closed," not "stealthed." ( ) Consider as better-than-nothing option for (a) people with old PCs, small hard drives, and no budget, and (b) people who don't want "learning mode" queries from a firewall. Look 'n' Stop 2.03 ( ) 78/89% resources free (+) 459K download (-) Shareware (-) Doesn't retain settings re. logging options. Outpost Free 1.0 ( ) 78/89% resources free ( ) 2.8 MB download (+) Many features (-) Effortful setup (-) In M.B.'s trial, no program was able to connect to the Net. (-) Dirty uninstall. To clean up, you obtain a .reg script from a message board and run it--if you dare. ZoneAlarm (free) 2.6.88 (-) 70/82%; resource hog ( ) 2.8 MB download (-) Slow? (-) Tricky uninstall; read the manual (-) v3.x said to be slower and use even more resources. Tiny Personal Firewall (not tested) (-) Shareware So Sygate it is.