firewall/security for elderly man without difficult popups

Discussion in 'other firewalls' started by sundial, Jul 17, 2008.

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  1. sundial

    sundial Registered Member

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    Hi,
    I need to set up a new computer for an elderly man. OS is Vista Home Basic.

    I need to decide on a firewall that won't require too much computer knowledge to answer the popups so that hopefully he can answer them correctly.

    I became unhappy with ZA recently so I will be switching him to one I am totally unfamiliar with--possibly outpost or Comodo?

    Also read about Threatfire on this board but am also unfamiliar with it--would it be good for this situation?

    Some more info: elderly man will not notice the firewall is off, will click on absolutely anything and everything that looks like a dangerous site or download, including porn---it's exactly like securing for a young child. One of the best security measures for him is a porn blocker which can block some dangerous sites and I have him on Filtergate which can allow me to block a specific site not on the block list but if you can suggest a better porn filter that would be great.

    Thanks.
     
  2. PiCo

    PiCo Registered Member

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  3. deanmartin

    deanmartin Registered Member

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    As far as the porn blocker, and just about anything else you wanted to block, (K9 Web Protection) from Blue Coat is great, been using it for years. And its FREE> (porn, images,phishing,nudity,spyware/malware sources, lots more) and it updates on its own. nothing to click. You may want to disable the barking dog when it blocks a site.
    http://www1.k9webprotection.com/
     
  4. ellison64

    ellison64 Registered Member

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    Any ideas whats new in this version?
    tia
    ellison
     
  5. PiCo

    PiCo Registered Member

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    Actually, none idea. I use the free version and the interface is exactly the same, I think there is a custon theme now and probably some things have been imrpoved under the hood.

    It was in beta mode for a very long time, so sth has to be improved :)
     
  6. sundial

    sundial Registered Member

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    I don't know if i understand the windows firewall control 2.0 enough to use it.

    If I loaded Outpost Pro and then Threatfire and then K9 anti-porn program -- is that enough security or does he need more?
     
  7. sded

    sded Registered Member

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    I have also attempted to secure a computer for an elderly man who ignores security. A few suggestions based on that experience.
    1) A good tool that is difficult to get around is the MVPS HOSTS file at http://www.mvps.org/winhelp2002/hosts.htm will eliminate the capability to access many of the porn and malware sites. And is hard for him to work around.
    2) A good real time virus checker, that pops up a huge warning that is hard for him to ignore. I use Avast!, which has the added advantage of updating itself transparently in the background so he doesn't have to remember anything. Haven't used Threatfire though; may be fine.
    3) A minimal interaction firewall, that can be set up to block (almost) all incoming connections. Comodo may be too complicated for him to use, even if you set it up yourself, based on their forum comments and my experience. If you don't like Zone Alarm, maybe Online Armor free would be suitable-Vista version is imminent. Haven't used Outpost Pro; may be fine.
    4) A copy of Acronis True Image, set up to run a weekly backup, so that when he screws up you can recover. :)
    5) Lots of patience and telephone time.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2008
  8. LocoLobo

    LocoLobo Registered Member

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    All that sounds fine, but wouldn't it be easier to use ONE thing like Deep Freeze, Shadow Surfer or even 'sandbox' his browser?

    With Shadow Surfer, once he is through for the day/night, he turns off the computer and it restarts like he never clicked on anything..

    From what I read, sandboxing his browser/computer would do the same thing..

    That way, the old guy could click to his heart's content and you wouldn't have a
    messed up computer to fix all the time..

    Just a thought! :)

    LoL
     
  9. acr1965

    acr1965 Registered Member

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    What's wrong with just running the Vista firewall and LUA? Also, maybe throw on something like http://www.opendns.com/

    I also agree with an image program.
     
  10. ellison64

    ellison64 Registered Member

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    Vista firewall control is easier (especially the paid for version) than outpost or any other firewall that i know of for the beginner,as you just enable the application to a zone.I.E ...browser goes to webbrowser zone,email goes to email zone.Im not sure whether outpost would be a bit much for the elderly gent you mention ,especially if everything such as the hips part of it is enabled.
    ellison
     
  11. BuzzStone

    BuzzStone Registered Member

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    The Vista Firewall and a good A/V is all that is required. The elderly man probably enjoys porn. To put a blocking program on his computer would take away his enjoyment. If you visit this fellow (family friend?) every now and then, just run a couple of scans to see if all is ok.
     
  12. wat0114

    wat0114 Guest

    A NAT router. No pop-ups to answer.
     
  13. twl845

    twl845 Registered Member

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    Trust me. Online Armor is your best choice. It is made for folks who want a simple no hands firewall that is also rated the best. Speaking for myself, a 68 year old who can't deal with all the rule making etc., you set it and forget it. :D
     
  14. sundial

    sundial Registered Member

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    If I used Online Armor plus a porn blocker---would that be enough security?

    If I used one of sandboxing type ones like Shadow Surfer or Deep Freeze plus a porn blocker---would that be enough security?

    (I am not super computer security savvy. I tried the Hosts once and couldn't figure it out. I don't really understand sandboxing, HIPS or all the various options. I don't understand NAT router but there is dsl which I think is a router unless I am mistaken.)

    (There has to be a porn blocker even if sandboxing or similar stuff because this person goes to groups supposedly with people who like fetish porn and he tries to communicate with them and he also goes to fetish sites where women supposedly want to communicate and tries to communicate with them. It's sort of a situation like a child thinking they are talking to another child but it's more likely a predator. Plus the porn sites are big on the drive by downloads and other malware.)
     
  15. Fly

    Fly Registered Member

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    I would disagree with some other posters here.

    One suggestion: just use the Vista firewall, and configure it properly. I have never used Vista, so I don't know if there will be any popups.

    Alternative: if the computer can handle it: McAfee. Total Protection if possible, and include parental controls. Don't forget to properly configure the firewall ! There are many reasons to reject McAfee, but in this case it may be a good choice. It's usually simple. Just don't forget to configure it properly. Serious drawback: support (especially chat) is really bad.

    Also recommended: one other, non-conflicting antispyware program. Many people like SAS, but I don't know it. I'm unsure which dedicated antispyware program is best, so I'll leave that question open.

    Let's keep in mind that most people here are real techies, and that common consumer software is probably best in this case.

    Or maybe Symantec ? I have no experience with it, and it's expensive.
     
  16. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

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    If the peep is behind a router you could:

    Install a reputable AV.
    Install a reputable Firewall, and create 2 rules. Allow and Deny. (Outpost does this easily. Usually what I use in these instances)
    Install a registered Sandboxie doing this:
    Force the browsers to run in a sandbox
    Lock down outbound sandbox apps to the ones you want
    Lock down file system or registry within sandbox
    Create a directory for downloaded files to live in.
    Make the download directory start .exe's in the sandbox by default.

    Consider possible implementing TF, as it is fairly quiet.

    Then the hardest part.

    Explain in simple terms what the real threats might be. Explain what is on the computer to protect. Explain the very simple firewall and AV function. Explain (simply now) what a virtual environment is, and why you see the #app# in the title, and that is an indicator that it is working.

    This is assuming that browsing, email and chat all run within the sandbox. If nothing else 'touches' the web but AV updates etc, this might provide a simple defensive barrier that even non-techies can relate to. It has worked for a lot of my family and friends.

    Sul.
     
  17. Saraceno

    Saraceno Registered Member

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    Vista Firewall Control is very easy to use. Run the most common programs (Firefox, Opera, the AV (Avast!) or ThreatFire) and select 'enable all' for the program/s to run.

    Anything you want blocked, select 'disable all'. For example, you may want to set windows media player and adobe reader, which constantly try to update, to 'disable all' along with any other unnecessary programs such as office applications and so on.

    Then in settings, select 'disable custom theme' and 'do not show log balloon' and you're right to go.



    PiCo: Anywhere list the new features in 2.0? I've found version 1.3.8.305 has no problems. :thumb:
     
  18. Dark Shadow

    Dark Shadow Registered Member

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  19. PiCo

    PiCo Registered Member

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    New features no, but features in general are listed here.
    So I can't really say what has changed :(

    I too used the 1.3.8.305 with no problems, but then saw a new version was out and installed it!
     
  20. Saraceno

    Saraceno Registered Member

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    I was surprised at how well it works. Great program.

    Some things don't need to be complicated. Security alarm systems tell you when someone is trying to bust in. I don't want to be alerted every time a moth taps the glass window. :p

    Thanks for the heads up. I'll install the new one. :)
     
  21. Kees1958

    Kees1958 Registered Member

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    Make it Vista FW control, ThreatFire and K9, make sure he runs LUA in quiet mode (TweakUC), which makes internet explorer run in protected mode

    Adjust this in the TF settings: create restore point HOW TO: click SETTINGS, Click tab QUARANTAINE, select option Set Restore Point,


    Next change the default handling settings of TF: Click SETTINGS, click DEFAULT ACTIONS, change first into Prompt Me, the 2nd and 3rd to Quarantaine

    That really does it/Should be enough
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2008
  22. sundial

    sundial Registered Member

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    This sounds like a good plan.

    Which Vista FW Control are we talking about? --- paid or free version?
     
  23. mack_guy911

    mack_guy911 Registered Member

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    just buy a good router and vista firewall is quite sufficient behind the router

    or if you really want a software base firewall go for outpost and install it auto rule set mode and make rest of things as default its give you very good security....
    without pop up and any other problems .............i did the same setup on my cosin system till date no problem

    outpost paid (auto rule set default mode)+ avira free + vista home premium 32 bit= no popup.....:)
     
  24. Kees1958

    Kees1958 Registered Member

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    Free will do fine, a good router with build in FW is always a good option,

    What I often add (when it the machine has a reasonable CPU) when asked to setup is:

    Install AVAST, but only the WebShield, Network shield and Internet Mail shield (deselect all other options, including skin) and when he might use P2P downloading also the P2P shield. This will make sure all incoming data streams are checked by an Antivirus/AntiSpyware engine.

    Installing Avast also provides the benefit of a rootkit scan on bootup (it is made with the assistance of GMER).


    Regards Kees
     
  25. Diver

    Diver Registered Member

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    Run the Vista build in firewall in the default mode, and make sure your friend/client has a router. Do not turn off UAC. IMO, Avira free works pretty good with Vista, but Defender must be kept running to catch spyware because Avira free will not.
     
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