Need good free firewall for novice user that's easy to use

By macx
Oct 27, 2010
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  1. My 80 year old cousin is a very basic user, but I feel she does need some type
    of reasonably effective firewall.

    She does not know how to deal with windows that pop open and ask if something
    should be allowed.

    In fact, most of the things that have opened up since I installed Online Armor are
    things I've never heard of, either. So that doesn't make it user friendly, at least
    to me, and I'd consider myself an intermediate user. The only way I have any
    clue about most of those things is if I recognize the name of an application that
    I use as part of the name that is being asked about, or if it pops up while I'm
    using an application.

    I recently read some posts on this forum regarding firewalls which updated my
    "knowledge base."

    I had tried Zone Alarm some time ago and found that version, whatever was current
    a couple years ago, caused lots of conflicts, and was extremely tough to totally uninstall, but with help from here finally did get rid of it.

    Lately I'd just been using the basic Windows firewall, but recently read that it was
    deficient in a number of areas, more risk than I wanted to accept, so ventured into trying one of the other recommended ones.

    Tried Online Armor which, except for the above noted difficulties, seems to be
    pretty decent once you get thru all the setup stuff and give permission to the apps
    you use, even though there are still quite a number of things asked about that I
    had little clue about. I just don't see how that helps any - in the past I've blocked
    things it turned out I needed because I didn't know what they were, and no explanations
    were available at all. Then it was difficult to get them unblock because there was no
    readily apparent way to reverse the blockage and no directions in Help or anything.

    Anyway - even that would be beyond my cousin.

    So, are there any worth installing that don't run you around in circles answering all
    kinds of pop up windows to allow or block? Even if they aren't really strong or totally
    effective, something would be better than nothing. For her it's got to be something
    you just click "install" and it does the rest.

  2. EDO219

    EDO219 TS Rookie Posts: 212

    That's a good question and I too am interested in the answers.

    What I typically do is expose the individual's firewall to everything good that must not be blocked (i.e. fill up the exceptions list). Then, I just tell them to hit block on pretty much anything unless you are installing a new program or connecting to a different network for the first time. Also, Adblock Plus for Firefox silently blocks the bad content on most sites before it even reaches the firewall so that has helped to make the whole process more automated.
  3. abe10tiger

    abe10tiger TechSpot Paladin Posts: 789   +16

  4. pjamme

    pjamme TS Enthusiast Posts: 208

    Microsoft Security Essentials has had good reviews as a Virus Scanner and Firewall and you cannot get much simpler.

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