What is the best firewall software? What are the best network monitoring tools? Windows Firewall is a simple software that monitors the traffic in your network, be it LAN or wifi internet via your router. If you’re using AVG Firewall Free, it is time to change because it is no longer supported or updated. Who needs a firewall? Those who surf the internet via free Public wifi, a firewall adds a secondary protection layer on top of your antivirus.
A firewall adds extra Internet security to your computer or server by visualizing all past and present network data in an easy to understand graph. Instantly see every application or process communicating over the Internet, then dive in deeper to see who or what your computer is communicating with. Whenever anything new on your computer accesses the network firewall lets you know with a discreet alert that won’t interrupt your workflow or server.
Portmaster is a free and open-source application firewall that does the heavy lifting for you. Restore privacy and take back control over all your computer’s network activity. With Portmaster’s great defaults your privacy improves without any effort. And if you want to configure and control everything down to the last detail – Portmaster has you covered too!
- Monitor All Network Activity – Discover everything that is happening on your computer. Expose every connection your applications make and detect evil ones. Finally get the power to act accordingly.
- Auto-Block Trackers & Malware – Block ads, trackers and malware hosts system-wide. Portmaster does this by default and uses trusted filter lists, which are also used by Ad-Blockers, etc. Easily change the defaults to fit your needs.
- Secure Your DNS by Default – Even with invasive connections gone, you do not want to share your DNS requests out in the open. With Portmaster, all your DNS queries are automatically secured and re-routed to a DNS-over-TLS provider of your choice.
- Set Global & per‑App Settings – Easily cut off applications from the Internet. Or block all p2p connections globally but allow them for certain apps. Or never connect to specific countries. Portmaster has you covered.
Detects hidden threats with GlassWire’s Traffic Monitor and Firewall. Instantly see your current & past network activity.
Detect malware, & block badly behaving apps. Use GlassWire simple to use interface to view all your past and present network activity on a graph.
GlassWire also has a toolbox of network security checks like system file change detection, device list change detection, app info change detection, ARP spoofing monitoring, and we’re just getting started. Their software also alerts you if your computer or server is communicating with a known IP or domain threat. We’re working hard on adding many more intrusion detection rules to GlassWire in the future.
- Instantly see who or what your PC is talking to on GlassWire’s network monitoring graph, plus see what your PC may have connected to in the past.
- Detect spyware, malware, badly behaving apps, and bandwidth hogs, then block their connections.
- GlassWire warns you of network related changes to your PC, or unusual changes to your apps that could indicate malware.
- Monitor other PCs on your network and get alerted when new unknown devices join your WiFi.
Zone Alarm has been around for ages, I remember it was pretty well known for its privacy software back in the 90’s. It is one of the most widely used free firewall software in the market, it has all the ingredients to be the best firewall replacement for the default Microsoft Windows Firewall. Highly recommended.
For those with an existing free antivirus that comes without a firewall, Comodo Firewall is a good combination. It is one of the leading antivirus companies in the world, with their widely used antivirus software and years of knowledge, it has one of the topnotch network defense and proactive defense features against malicious attacks.
Comodo Firewall Pro introduces the next evolution in computer security: Default Deny Protection (DDP™). What is DDP? Most security programs maintain a list of known malware, and use that list to decide which applications and files shouldn’t access a PC. The problem here is obvious. What if the list of malware is missing some entries, or isn’t up to date?
DDP fixes this problem to ensure complete security. The firewall references a list of over two million known PC-friendly applications. If a file that is not on this safe-list knocks on your PC’s door, the Firewall immediately alerts you to the possibility of attacking malware. All this occurs before the malware infects your computer. It’s prevention-based security, the only way to keep PCs totally safe.
WinGate Proxy Server is a highly capable HTTP Proxy server, SOCKS server, integrated Internet gateway and communications server designed to meet the access control, security and communications needs of today’s businesses. In addition to a comprehensive range of features, WinGate Proxy Server’s license options provide you the flexibility to match your needs to your budget, whether you need to manage an enterprise, small business, or home network.
Free firewall is a full-featured professional firewall that protects against the threats of the Internet. Control every program on your computer by permitting or denying access to the Internet. Free firewall notifies you when applications want to access the Internet in the background without your knowledge. In monitoring mode, no software can access the Internet or network without your prior authorization. You have full control over the flow of data out of your system and into.
TinyWall is a free software to harden and control the advanced firewall built into Windows Vista and Windows 7. It is perhaps the most lightweight firewall that is minimal on computer resources, if only it is open source, the community could further develop it. Unlike others with a free and pro edition, TinyWall is 100% free with no pro edition, thus you get the best of everything instead of a stripped down version.
Remember to disable your Windows default firewall before installing Tinywall to prevent any unwanted network issues. Tinywall is an ideal firewall for Small Business.
Give your home network a much needed security boost. The Home Edition of the Sophos XG Firewall features full protection for your home network, including anti-malware, web security and URL filtering, application control, IPS, traffic shaping, VPN, reporting and monitoring, and much more.
- Full protection for your home users and your home network
- Integrated, hardened Linux operating system
- Increase your Internet Bandwidth – You can make easy use of traffic shaping to prioritize application traffic over your internet connection and even subscribe to multiple ISP connections to get more bandwidth or resiliency in the event of an outage with one of them.
- Monitor and control family web surfing – Use Web Filtering to stop sites from infecting you with viruses and spyware, keep your children from surfing to bad sites, and get full reporting on the activity in your home. Also setup access schedules or usage quotas for family members who may be wasting too much time online.
Malwarebytes Windows Firewall Control (merged with BiniSoft) is a powerful tool which extends the functionality of Windows Firewall and provides new extra features which makes Windows Firewall better.
It runs in the system tray and allows the user to control the native firewall easily without having to waste time by navigating to the specific part of the firewall. This is the best tool to manage the native firewall from Windows 11, 10, 8.1, 8, 7, Server 2016, Server 2012. Windows Firewall Control offers four filtering modes which can be switched with just a mouse click:
- High Filtering – All outbound and inbound connections are blocked. This profile blocks all attempts to connect to and from your computer.
- Medium Filtering – Outbound connections that do not match a rule are blocked. Only the programs that you allow can initiate outbound connections.
- Low Filtering – Outbound connections that do not match a rule are allowed. The user can block the programs he doesn’t want to allow initiating outbound connections.
- No Filtering – Windows Firewall is turned off. Avoid using this setting unless you have another firewall running on your computer.
Simple tool to configure Windows Filtering Platform (WFP) which can configure network activity on your computer. The lightweight application is less than a megabyte, and it is compatible with Windows Vista and higher operating systems. You can download either the installer or portable version. For correct working, I need administrator rights.
- Simple interface without annoying pop ups
- Rules editor (create your own rules)
- Internal blocklist rules (block Windows spy / telemetry)
- Dropped packets information with notification and logging to a file feature (win7+)
- Allowed packets information with logging to a file feature (win8+)
- Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) support (win10)
11. Emsisoft Online Armor Free
[ Discontinued ] Online Armor’s range of firewall products are designed to fit every need. It is relatively a new kid on the block by Emsisoft but surprisingly it is easy to install and manage and does not hinder computer performance. The free version comes with basic protection as oppose to the pro or paid version.
12. Agnitum Outpost Internet Firewall
[ Discontinued ] This is the first full-functional Free Internet Security Suite in the market, Agnitum is relatively new in this market but the software performed as promised. Just like online armor, there is a paid version and the free version doesn’t come with some features such as Priority Update and ID theft prevention. Works on Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8.
Do You Need A Firewall When You have an Antivirus?
The differences between a firewall and anti-virus scanner and best one for your computer: