Not happy with Online Armor

Discussion in 'other firewalls' started by Albinoni, Jun 16, 2012.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Albinoni

    Albinoni Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2005
    Posts:
    709
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    Lat year I decided to renew my Online Armor subscription for another 1 year and to say the least I am not at all happy with this FW at all, infact its one of the worse FW's I have ever used in my entire life and to me it seems the previous verison or when I tried it the first time going back 2 years ago it was not a bad program at all.

    What annoys me the most about this program is when ever I install a software the numerous amount of times it pops up asking me eg to Block/Remember etc, this is that small box hat pops up and asks if I want to block or remember, install, run safer etc etc and this tends to get very annoying half the time.

    3 weeks ago I bought MS Office and installed it and on a serious note it took me almost 45 mins prob more to install it, was very annoying indeed. Online Armor simply kept popping up every 5 secs asking me if I want to Remember or Block this and that and the list goes on and on, seriously I should of becomed my own firewall if Online Armor cannot think for itself and needs the user to do the thinking for it.

    Anyhow once my expiry is up I wont be returning to OA unless OA can prove itself to be good. Infact I am on the verge to uninstall it soon and go for another good or free FW that does the job just as good.

    Any reccomendations
     
  2. Umbra

    Umbra Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    Posts:
    2,198
    Location:
    in a remote land :)
    It is the HIPS that ask you so many questions, and effectively it ask a lot. You can reduce the number of popups in the settings or just disable the HIPS but you will loose the main feature of OAP.
     
  3. Try install mode. OA can detect installers, and should give you the choice of allowing whatever a specific installer unpacks.

    (And yes, HIPS are a pain. Especially if you're doing any kind of compiling or software development.)
     
  4. ichito

    ichito Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2011
    Posts:
    1,486
    Location:
    Poland - Cracow
    I think it can be so because new Office after installing becomes not only as some program but also as the part of the system. In this context installation of Office is a constant string of changes in system.
    So...OA is effective because its function is to detect such changes :)
     
  5. Barthez

    Barthez Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2010
    Posts:
    112
    Location:
    Poland
    Learning Mode can be enabled by pressing CTRL+ALT+L or by choosing appropriate option from OA tray menu:
    http://www.emsisoft.com/en/info/oa/LrnMode.shtml

    Also, as others said, selecting Installer mode when installing could reduce number of pop-ups.

    In Program → Options Automatically trust programs that Emsisoft deems trustworthy, In addition, automatically trust programs signed with valid digital signatures and Contact Anti-Malware Network in realtime should be checked if you want to see less pop-ups.

    Above that, it's still a HIPS program (with firewall) so it's natural it can be a little chatty :)
     
  6. itman

    itman Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2010
    Posts:
    2,969
    Location:
    U.S.A.
    I recall that saying "Sometimes you are your worst ememy."

    People today are paronoid over the recent press on bad digital signatures and the like. Worse a few promonant web sites have been recommending that people override their default HIPS firewall Trusted Publisher settings.

    The result is constant complaints as presented in this thread.

    Yes, digital certs. have been hacked. However, it is rare and the major certificate authorities are quick to issue revoked certificates for the rouges.

    Again for the average non-tech PC user, running your HIPS firewall with it's default settings is strongly recommended.

    If you insist on using "manual" control for your HIPS firewall, then become an expert in how it works. Comodo, OA, and Privatefirewall for a few all have detailed user manuals that clearly specify that when installing "trusted" software, the appropriate approach when running in manual HIPS mode is to select Installer\Learning\Training mode.

    Finally, a degree of common sense is required. Everyone knows that MS Office is an extreme complex suite of software. An easy fail safe approach to install software like this is temporarily turn off the HIPS portion of the firewall.
     
  7. cruelsister

    cruelsister Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2007
    Posts:
    977
    Location:
    Paris
    Even suggesting that turning off part of a security program in in order to reduce popups validates Albinoni's complaint. When a program gets annoying to the point of wanting to disable it when it can be most needed points to a very flawed piece of software. A user that has to wade through a bunch of trivia often will not be alert to a warning that is actually meaningful.

    A Security App that warns of everything detects nothing.
     
  8. fax

    fax Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2005
    Posts:
    3,730
    Location:
    localhost
    Nice post, 100% agree :thumb:
     
  9. Blues7

    Blues7 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2009
    Posts:
    858
    Location:
    Blue Ridge Mountains
    That said, I did a little testing yesterday (for what it's worth) with Private Firewall with default configuration versus my manual configuration on the Comodo Leak Test and there was a 70 point difference (in favor of the manual configuration). I'm not an expert by any means but I am able to read and follow the user manual to make settings changes which do not require extensive knowledge of configuring the various firewall and HIPS settings for individual apps. The results were simple enough to achieve with "macro" type settings.
    (I also realize that the CLT can give varying results when run multiple times, so one has to take the "mean" into consideration imho.)

    And though I'm sure that default settings are fine in many cases, one thing I've read over the years from users of Outpost Pro Firewall, Comodo, Private Firewall and other firewalls is that the default settings can often be too permissive in their "allowing all" so as not to frustrate the neophyte.

    Online Armor was the exception, as I recall, in being quite effective with just its default settings. Unfortunately, it no longer works well on my system due to an issue or issues I've never been able to discover.
     
  10. fax

    fax Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 30, 2005
    Posts:
    3,730
    Location:
    localhost
    70 points measured by ? A test I guess... A test is a test and can be far away from the reality out there and user configuration and/or habit.
     
  11. Blues7

    Blues7 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2009
    Posts:
    858
    Location:
    Blue Ridge Mountains
    I absolutely agree with you. (By the way I edited my post prior to reading yours and added that it was the Comodo Leak Test I was using.)

    Fact is that I doubt anything is going to get through Sandboxie to begin with, and on the off chance it did, there's a good chance that the FW/HIPS or the behavior blocker of EAM (an Emsisoft product like Online Armor) or a signature from the AV or anti-malware would sound the alarm. But I was only reporting the score of the FW/HIPS alone.
     
  12. Baserk

    Baserk Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2008
    Posts:
    1,317
    Location:
    AmstelodamUM
    I'd say that not using the quite obvious installer options offered by the program; 'Learning Mode' and 'Install Mode' shows either a lack of knowledge on the program (which had been used for more than a year) or an unwillingness to use these options.
    Online Armor is(can be) extremely user-friendly if only you use the built-in options.
    There is absolutely no need to torture yourself by ignoring these options when installing software.
     
  13. Blues7

    Blues7 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2009
    Posts:
    858
    Location:
    Blue Ridge Mountains
    Addendum

    I just wanted to add some new results. I went back and retested PrivateFirewall in virtually every fashion I could...Default settings as they would be upon install...default settings with advanced options, default settings enhanced by moving sliders to highest protection...then the same with advanced options added...and finally with my own "custom" settings.

    Well, today's results were pretty consistent...I could get 300 out of 330 in virtually each configuration.
    (I made sure to remove any "memory" of the test in the firewall/process monitor settings before each instance of running CLT.)

    So, I made a liar out of myself but the truth needed to be told...:cool:

    My understanding is that Online Armor will max out the test in default configuration without any user elected options but it's been a while since I've had it installed due to the issues I alluded to.

    Going to stand in the corner now...:rolleyes:
     
  14. Blues7

    Blues7 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2009
    Posts:
    858
    Location:
    Blue Ridge Mountains
    Interesting you say this, because it was during this past week's Microsoft security updates that Comodo drove me insane. All of the updates save one (the MS framework updates) were handled without issue...but Comodo kept on wanting to sandbox (as an unrecognized/unknown app) the uddate for that particular item.

    It drove me nuts as no matter how fast I clicked "do not sandbox in future" it kept crippling the next attempt to install.

    Finally, I removed Comodo, reinstalled PF and when the update notice came around again it was able to be managed with no drama whatsoever by answering the prompts that PF raised.

    I realize that each app has its own pluses and minuses but even Comodo is not without its warts in this regard.

    When I ran OA, I don't remember having any difficulties allowing a new app to install as long as the prompts were answered during the process.

    This is a timely and interesting discussion...I'm glad it's been raised.
     
  15. Umbra

    Umbra Registered Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2011
    Posts:
    2,198
    Location:
    in a remote land :)
    I didnt have this issue with CIS and the latest Windows updates, did you uncheck some options like "automatically trust files from trusted installers" or "create rules for safe applications" ?
     
  16. Scoobs72

    Scoobs72 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Posts:
    1,108
    Location:
    Sofa (left side)
    Albinoni, what version of Online Armor are you running? This MS Office problem was meant to be fixed in 5.5.0.1557.
     
  17. Blues7

    Blues7 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2009
    Posts:
    858
    Location:
    Blue Ridge Mountains
    Yes, "automatically trust all files from trusted installers" was unchecked (based upon the recommendation in the past from someone far more experienced with Comodo than me.)

    "Create rules for safe applications" was off by default in D+.

    But if it was a safe or trusted app or installer, I don't know why Comodo would be indicating that it wanted to sandbox it as "unknown". I guess if I had that setting, once I told Comodo that I trusted the installer, it wouldn't have popped up again blocking multiple attempts to run the update.

    I don't doubt that some lack of familiarity or expertise on my part may have prevented my finding a quick solution to the issue but the fact remains that once it was quite frustrating and with PF the solution was as simple as answering the pop-ups and proceeding with the install. I hadn't had this problem with installing apps with Comodo in the past.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2012
  18. blasev

    blasev Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2010
    Posts:
    763
    I'm not a fan of HIPS, but.. Aren't popup alert are the main reason to buy it?
    As far as I know, all hips fans are excited with robust and complete protection for every minor detail.

    If one person hate too much pop up, I think they should keep away fom it, just like I do :D
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2012
  19. zip

    zip Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Posts:
    359
    Location:
    Mars
    I've tried a zillion fw's , but I always came back to ZoneAlarm. :D
     
  20. paniccom

    paniccom Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2006
    Posts:
    100
    How are these I/O Read Bytes and Peak Memory Usage numbers compared to other firewalls? Running XP SP3. Seem high, but running smooth, so just wondering if anything unusual here.

    Online Armor.jpg
     
  21. King Grub

    King Grub Registered Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2006
    Posts:
    814
    How long is the system up-time?
     
  22. Manny Carvalho

    Manny Carvalho Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2004
    Posts:
    270
    Installing software and running in a production environment are two different things. Installing software from a trusted source poses no threat unless the copy of the code was obtained from a dodgy source.

    It's not that HIPS is at fault, it's only doing what you asked it to and shouldn't be viewed as flawed software. This happens with all HIPS software so unless you consider the concept flawed then this is what you paid your money for. That is for the HIPS program to intercept calls that might be considered malicious and that's just what it's doing. All those prompts are meaningful.

    The problem here is that those call are also used by "good software" and only the user can really tell whether it's good or not. The HIPS software is just noting the intercepts. When installing good software why then would you subject yourself to unnecessary prompts? Either turn it off the features or use the auto learning. If a user insists on doing installs manually with full protection on, this is exactly what one should expect. It's the nature of the beast.

    I happen to be an Outpost user and see the same thing. This is more of learn what your firewall can do as opposed to complaining about prompts. One has to know how to separate the trivia from the useful. There's no real way around it regardless of how much can get done without user intervention.
     
  23. paniccom

    paniccom Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2006
    Posts:
    100
    About half an hour or so after a restart. Not using PC heavy, just a little browsing (Firefox).
     
  24. zip

    zip Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2007
    Posts:
    359
    Location:
    Mars
    I'm now running OA Free, emisoft has worked the bugs out of OA Free.

    I don't miss ZA. OA Free works great.

    I liked Outpost Free, but it's full of bugs.

    From what I hear, Agnitum isn't interested in fixing the bugs in Outpost Free.
     
  25. paniccom

    paniccom Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2006
    Posts:
    100
    How are your I/O Read Bytes, zip? (See my post #20 above). I agree OA Free works great, I just never saw such high numbers (later on went to 18 billion+ before I restarted again.)
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.