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Software firewall - is it always so good?
Forum Admin Offline
#1 Posted : Wednesday, March 30, 2011 10:30:31 PM(UTC)
Admin Happy Ankle

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Software firewall - is it always so good?

One day I found that the Windows built-in firewall doesn't provide any good protection. In many cases the Built-in Firewall was unable to catch the programs trying to get Internet access. It was working and even noticing these programs, but only after several minutes of a very active traffic created by these programs. But that should never be considered as a serious protection and I decided to test a few freeware firewalls available on the Internet nowadays.

The first firewall that I found in the customer ratings was Comodo. The firewall was downloaded and I started installing it. I'm pretty sure that in 99.9% of cases people never read any License Agreement just blindly clicking Yes/OK buttons and checking all the boxes Pray, but I usually review all the documents to make sure that this is really what I want and to stop blaming myself if something serious happens after I got it installed. How briefly I do that depends on the company and on the document itself. This time I was shocked when I found this so called agreement and started reading more carefully. Take a closer look.

Comodo Internet Security Premium with 60 Day Free GeekBuddy Trial

We can read about limited, non-exclusive, non-transferable, etc. license. So far so good. Then we come to the second part of the document called Specific Licenses.

2.3. DNS Services
(i) With your permission, CIS will reconfigure your DNS settings to point to the Comodo name servers to accept, process, and resolve recursive DNS queries (“Recursive Traffic”). Comodo may re-direct or terminate Recursive Traffic that Comodo, in its sole discretion, determines or considers to be harmful or invalid. You must not disclose the NameServer addresses to any third party who has not accepted this Agreement.

My comment is following. The company providing service can use its own DNS servers, but not to use them to log the user's activity and to filter everything that the user wants to work with! And it's too much to make the users agree and let Comodo make these changes.

(ii) Upon termination of this agreement, you must change your DNS settings away from Comodo’s NameServers. Comodo is not required to provide access to alternative services at termination.

(iii) The DNS services contain links to websites operated by third parties ("Third Party Sites"). These links are for your convenience only. Comodo does not endorse, control, monitor, or verify the contents of the Third Party Sites and is not liable for the contents or for any loss, damage or injury sustained arising out of your access to the Third Party Sites.

Well, it doesn't..., but according to (i) above it can just redirect or terminate. Where is the logic? And you must change your DNS settings upon termination. That's for sure. But I will never change them to Comodo with no doubt! And I will never agree with this agreement anyway!

But the next few items are even more impressive!

2.4. GeekBuddy Services
(iii) You authorize Comodo to access your computers and delete the files that Comodo deems unnecessary to your computers’ operation. You grant Comodo express permission to alter the registry of any computer using GEEKBUDDY and to install, configure, and use additional software on your computers as Comodo sees fit.
(v) The Comodo support representative may need to download, run, or use software on your computer to assist in diagnosing and resolving computer problems. Such software may include toolbars, utilities, and other tools that allow Comodo to improve computer performance and solve technical problems (collectively, the “Diagnostic Software”).

Well, I need to open a huge hole in my computer to let these guys play with it, delete programs that they think should be deleted, etc. They can install whatever they want, etc. Isn't that great? I'm already very impressed with this kind of service. But let's finish reading.

2.5. Auto Sandbox Services.
A service that isolates unknown programs. By default an unknown programs are executed inside sandbox and then automatically sent to Comodo for malware analysis. If a program is found by Comodo to be malicious it is then added to the CIS malware definitions list. If it found to be safe it is added to CIS safe program list. The next time CIS receives antivirus updates, CIS scans all the programs running inside sandbox. If any program is found to be malicious, sandbox isolates the program and moves it to the quarantine list to protect your computer.

Maybe it sounds good for someone, but I imagine a pretty simple situation. I buy a new licensed program and it simply goes away for so called analysis, or I'm a software developer and all the programs that I write are to be uploaded to Comodo for further analysis as soon as I compile them! I'm not even talking about security risks and copyright related issues. The code that I write is unique and it should not be freely shared, many people depend on this code. But this functionality simply assumes that all the unknown applications should be uploaded to Comodo. Isn't that the greatest idea to control all the developers using Comodo Firewall? I will leave comments to the readers.

Of course, after reading all that I canceled the installation immediately, then switched to another firewall, installed it and keep using with pleasure.

1 user thanked Forum Admin for this useful post.
Walter on 3/31/2011(UTC)
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Walter Offline
#2 Posted : Thursday, March 31, 2011 1:11:01 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: Forum Admin Go to Quoted Post
Software firewall - is it always so good?

Interesting article, thanks! I'm really curious how many people read documents like you. Applause

And what was your final choice, what firewall are you using now?
Forum Admin Offline
#3 Posted : Sunday, April 10, 2011 1:33:40 AM(UTC)
Admin Happy Ankle

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Originally Posted by: Walter Go to Quoted Post
Interesting article, thanks! I'm really curious how many people read documents like you. Applause

And what was your final choice, what firewall are you using now?

Walter, try Zone Alarm. I'm sure you will like it. Angel

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