Privatefirewall - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Privatefirewall

CNET Editors' review

Windows ships with an effective suite of security tools, including a firewall, but third-party firewalls are popular with many users. Many are free, and the most popular ones do a good job keeping millions of users safe from cyber attacks, hackers, and other intrusive threats. Privacyware's Privatefirewall has all the features and most of the extras that most personal firewall and host intrusion prevention freeware (HIPS) offer, like its Process Monitor and Port Tracking tools. Its chief advantages are its intelligent tracking feature and its extensive explanations. Privatefirewall monitors your online activity privately to learn your usage patterns. It detects and blocks anomalous usage patterns that could signal an intrusive attack on your system. As with other firewalls, you can easily allow any activity. But Privatefirewall's system is designed to make allowing regular programs less frequent (and annoying) while still protecting you from threats.

Privatefirewall's user interface is easy to understand, and so are its various features and settings, thanks to a right-hand panel that displayed a detailed explanation of everything we selected. The Main Menu opens with two main functions, Internet Security and Network Security. Sliders let us choose High, Low, or Custom security levels much like in Windows. We could add trusted and blocked sites, too. Privatefirewall enables separate Profiles for Home, Office, and Remote connections, a handy option for laptops. We could import and export the program's settings, including Process, Email, and System Anomaly Detection settings. This interesting tool displays Training Statistics that show which programs it analyzed and when; we could set its Sensitivity level and also limit the training period. The program's Help file offers more detail than the user interface in explaining the anomaly detection feature as well as the Port Tracking tool and other features.

The true test of a firewall is in how well it protects your system. We tried a variety of probes and simulated attacks, and Privatefirewall kept them at bay. Since the firewall that fails exits the marketplace quickly, we expected nothing less from Privatefirewall. Its intelligent monitoring and its detailed documentation set it apart from the other free firewalls, though.

Publisher's Description

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All User Reviews
  • All versions:

    4.0 stars

    out of 129 votes

    • 5 star: 78
    • 4 star: 17
    • 3 star: 6
    • 2 star: 8
    • 1 star: 20
  • Current version:

    3.2 stars

    out of 4 votes

    • 5 star: 1
    • 4 star: 1
    • 3 star: 1
    • 2 star: 0
    • 1 star: 1
  • My rating:

    0 stars

    Write review

Results 1-4 of 4

  • 5.0 stars

    "Really Good HIPS Feature!"

    February 26, 2014  |   By BlackBox_Hacker

    Version: Privatefirewall 7.0.30.2

    Pros

    This Software has very good Zero-day Protection

    Cons

    It don't work very well with Windows Firewall!

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (0) (0)

  • 1.0 stars

    "Beware!!! Intense Malware on this Install"

    January 13, 2014  |   By SteveW__

    Version: Privatefirewall 7.0.30.2

    Pros

    I didn't have time to evaluate the firewall component to this install. I was to darn busy trying to remove the malware this download installed. I even opted out of all the additional "free" installs offered before the install program began.

    Cons

    Loaded up with hard to remove malware. Wow! It was a mistake downloading this train wreck. It was so bad, that I had to walk away from my computer and work on the malware again on another day.

    Reply to this review Read replies (2)

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  • 4.0 stars

    "Straightforward, effective free firewall!"

    January 3, 2014  |   By Batchoy2

    Version: Privatefirewall 7.0.30.2

    Pros

    Simple to use
    Easy to navigate
    Adapts easily with your system

    Cons

    Just the old GUI but no more so far.

    Summary

    From Comodo Free Firewall, I now use the Privatefirewall.

    I have made an extensive research from other independent reviews and sites and hence, Privatefirewall is a good contender!

    Updated on Jan 17, 2014

    I now use Privatefirewall 7.0 on all of my computers. I uninstall the latest Comodo Free Firewall.

    Updated on Jan 17, 2014

    I now use Privatefirewall 7.0 on all of my computers. I uninstall the latest Comodo Free Firewall.

    Reply to this review

    Was this review helpful? (0) (0)

  • 3.0 stars

    "Blocks legitimate programs"

    December 16, 2013  |   By sharcs

    Version: Privatefirewall 7.0.30.2

    Pros

    - Very light weight and easy to use
    - Does it's job of creating a barrier between your computer and the internet

    Cons

    - Block a lot of legitimate programs and sometimes doesn't even admit to it. It took me several resets to discover that it crashes my Steam games on launch and I had to turn it of when updating windows because it was automatically blocking random files from the update.

    Summary

    I wouldn't use it again simply because, if something goes wrong, I'll never be able to be sure if there's something wrong with my computer or if a program has it's hands tied behind it's back by PrivateFirewall.

    Reply to this review

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Results 1-4 of 4

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