Security & Privacy
Free firewalls for Windows 8: ZoneAlarm Firewall Reviews
Are you looking for a free firewall for your Windows 8 PC? In this article, I am reviewing the free Windows 8 firewall from ZoneAlarm.
I was looking for a good firewall for my Windows 8 laptop, even though Windows 8 comes preloaded with a default Windows Firewall. I was looking for something easier to manage and finally ended up trying the ZoneAlarm Firewall, which is part of their Internet Security products. It comes with 2 flavors: a free edition and a pro edition.
I have used ZoneAlarm in multiple computers in the past and so I thought I would give a try on my Windows 8 PC. I downloaded the ZoneAlarm free firewall on the PC and the installation was very smooth. No unwanted warnings and confusing messages that will make any novice user hit the Cancel button on the installer! Installation was done in few seconds.
ZoneAlarm firewall review
After the installation was completed, the firewall was launched and there was no restart required. I am using
Norton 360 Antivirus
on the same computer and there was no conflict between Norton Antivirus and the ZoneAlarm firewall.
ZoneAlarm firewall is fully compatible with Windows 8. The installer adds a Tile to the new Windows 8 start screen. If you click on the Tile, it will launch the firewall manager where you can configure various settings including what level and type of protection you need, view the invasions and hacker attempts etc. The Tile on the start screen does not look like a Live Tile, giving any live updates or status messages regarding the protection status.
Features of ZoneAlarm
ZoneAlarm has a free edition as well as a paid, Pro edition. The Pro edition comes with advanced features including 24/7 customer support and advanced parental controls. (Note: Parental controls are part of the Internet Security Suite and is not fully integrated in to Windows 8 yet).
The free edition gives all basic firewall features for your Windows PC. The advanced 2-way protection not only protects your computer from intrusions to your computer, but it protects your data from being sent to internet by malicious software running on your Windows 8 PC.
It comes with free toolbar for your browsers, which will give you peace of mind while browsing the web. You can be assured that you will be protected from malicious websites injecting trojans and malware on your computer. The advanced download protection will protect the PC from downloading potentially dangerous files from internet. The advanced firewall action monitors your computer for any suspicious activity that could usually bypass the traditional antivirus programs.
DefenseNet, an advanced protection system from ZoneAlarm leverages real-time data from millions of zoneAlarm users community to protect the computers from latest and and breaking threats.
Also, the ZoneAlarm comes with some free services like Identity Theft protection, which include credit card monitoring, daily credit reports with email alerts etc. Also, you could utilize the cloud based free online backup storage for upto 5Gb.
How secure is ZoneAlarm
The first thing I did after installing ZoneAlarm firewall on my Windows 8 computer was to take it through a test. I searched for some torrent download websites and tried to randomly download various files. Also, I browsed few movie sites that are well known for malware distribution. ZoneAlarm was able to detect intrusions and gave me proper warnings about the risks involved in proceeding with malicious sites. Also, whenever I tried to install programs that require access to privileges Windows resources, ZoneAlarm gave proper warnings and paused the installation until I confirmed whether to proceed or not. See the screenshot of the warning I received when I tried to install BitComet, a popular bit torrent client:
ZoneAlarm firewall for Windows - My recommendation
If you are looking for a free firewall for your Windows, I recommend you try ZoneAlarm. You can either get a free edition or go for a Pro edition. The Pro edition is available as a 30 day trial, so, you might want to try the trial edition first before you decide to put your money on it. According to the information in the
official ZoneAlarm website
, the only advantage I see for the paid version compared to the free firewall is, you will get 24/7 customer service. If you are not very keen on getting the support, you can live with the free edition, which does the job well.
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Tony John is a professional blogger from India, who started his first Weblog in 1998 at Tripod.com. Tony switched to blogging as a passion blended business in the year 2000 and currently operates several popular web properties including IndiaStudyChannel.com, Techulator.com, dotnetspider.com and many more.
794 articles authored by Tony John
Responses to "Free firewalls for Windows 8: ZoneAlarm Firewall Reviews"
19 Nov 2012
I think free firewalls not enough to protect our data. If you want to get some real protection for your PC, you should go for some professional firewalls instead of the free versions.
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