Note: This review addresses version
If you want maximum firewall protection–and can endure some
annoyance–you’d do well with Comodo Firewall, an extremely
effective protection tool to keep yourself safe from Internet
dangers. It blocks Trojans, hackers trying to take control of your
PC, and other threats–all for free.
When you install Comodo Firewall, you choose to install only the
basic firewall, the “Firewall with Optimum Proactive Defense”
(which also protects against malware which can bypass firewalls),
or the Firewall with Maximum Proactive Defense+, which does what
“Firewall with Optimum Proactive Defense” does, plus protecting
against “leaks”–information about things such as open ports on
your PC being sent out over the Internet. The higher the level of
protection, the greater the firewall’s intrusiveness, so you must
balance protection versus annoyance when making your choice. You
can change the level of protection later, when the program’s
Installation requires close attention. At defaults, you could
end up with bundled products and unwelcome surprises. After
downloading the entire Comodo
Internet Security package, you can choose to install an
antivirus application, the firewall, a 30-day trial of Comodo’s
LivePCSupport, or any combination of the three. For this review, we
installed only “Firewall with Optimum Proactive Defense.”
During installation the Comodo Firewall will change your default
search engine to Ask.com, make Hopsurf.com your home page, and
install the Hopsurf.com toolbar–unless you uncheck those options.
And you can also opt to use Comodo’s DNS servers instead of your
default DNS servers, although the default is to use your own.
Once you’re in the program, things get more straightforward.
After you install Comodo Firewall, when an application needs to
make an Internet connection, the firewall will ask whether you want
to allow that connection. If you know the app, allow it to make the
connection; if you don’t, tell the firewall to block it. Comodo
cuts down on the number of these annoying pop-ups because it knows
a number of safe applications–such as browsers and e-mail
clients–and lets those through without question.
For basic operation, that’s all that you need to know. If you
want to customize Comodo’s functioning, you can do that as well;
there’s a wealth of techie information available. Most people will
be satisfied to let the firewall work on its own.
If you use Maximum Proactive Defense+, you’ll also be asked when
programs try to make certain system changes, such as altering
portions of the Registry. You’ll have to balance safety with being
annoyed. You can turn that part of the program on and off.
More important than interface of a firewall is effectiveness,
and here Comodo Firewall Pro shines. Matousec.com‘s set
of firewall tests rates Comodo Firewall Pro well ahead of other
firewalls–over the last year, the firewall rated 95% every time it
was tested. In contrast, Norton Internet Security’s firewall
ratings range between 66% and 71%, McAfee’s were at 12%, Panda
Internet Security between 4% and 12%, ZoneAlarm Free at 11%, and
ZoneAlarm Pro at 72%.
If you’re willing to put up with an annoying installation
procedure, and you don’t mind occasional interruptions, Comodo
Firewall is a keeper. It’s strong, and you certainly can’t beat the
price. If the installation issues turn you off, you might want to
try a less intrusive firewall, or just use what’s built into
Note: This software comes in 32-bit and 64-bit
versions. This is the 32-bit version. If your 64-bit PC is running
a 64-bit OS, please download the 64-bit