Firefox and Zonealarm

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Joined: May 16, 2003
Posts: 1676

Location: London

PostPosted: Sat Jan 31, 2009 6:02 pm    Post subject: Firefox and Zonealarm

I put this post in another thread, as an update to an old problem posted there.. But in retrospect, maybe it needs to be on its own. There is no realistic doubt that this is a Firefox/Zonealarm issue. No other parameters were changed.
I put Zone Alarm on my Vista PC a few weeks back. (Free version)
Then shortly after I found that Firefox sometimes froze, not exactly crashed, but wouldn't load any more pages. I could force it to close, but apparently not fully. . Any attempt to restart it came up with an error message saying that it was already running and I had to exit or reboot.
No programmes were running in the Task manger. But Ff service was, and wouldn't cancel. I kept havng to reboot.
A search of the Ff website for that error message had a number of solutions, but removing Zone Alarm was the only one there that made sense on my set up.
As soon as I removed Zone Alarm, Firefox worked again. My new firewall gives no such problem.
So it appears that Zone Alarm does indeed conflict with FireFox.

1.) I'm using the PCTools free firewall now. It seems good.
In between, while researching, I relied quite happily on the Vista one.
2.) Why ZoneAlarm? If it works OK, why not? Some people do but may find that Firefox then plays up. So now they have an idea why. That's the information. Take it or leave it.

Last edited by tbernstein on Sun Feb 01, 2009 11:09 am; edited 1 time in total
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Joined: Mar 06, 2007
Posts: 1244

PostPosted: Sat Jan 31, 2009 8:08 pm    Post subject:

So, what is your "new" firewall?

I'd suspect that the combo is having a problem with VISTA, more than with itself. But since VISTA (I do believe, but could be wrong) has basically the same type firewall built in, (bi-directional) why not try it? (if you haven't already)

As you found out, when one combo doesn't work, try another. But in MY case, I'd be more willing to switch firewalls than browsers. As IE is crap from the word go, that doesn't leave to many choices there. As I feel the rest are either CHEAP copies of FF or more IE crap or worse & with a hardware firewall, the software one is just added insurance anyway.

But there again, I now primarily run LINUX which has its own built in so no need of any other. But STILL use FF.
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Joined: Mar 11, 2005
Posts: 2747

PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:39 am    Post subject:

It is my understanding that Vista's firewall is pretty good, unlike XP's.
I don't run Vista so have no way to test it.
I recently installed XP and was using the XP firewall. Disclaimer: I am behind a router so I have hardware protection.
I installed Comodo (firewall only) v3 after turning off XP's firewall. I discovered XP would not load. I let it set for a long time (the screensaver, which I don't have set up to run, started running??) . That was good because I finally got an error box which allowed me to get in. I promptly removed Comodo, used my restore point that I made before the installation and now am back to just using XP's firewall.
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Joined: Nov 29, 2007
Posts: 2297

Location: Central FL, USA

PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2009 3:02 am    Post subject:

For years, ZoneAlarm has been a huge resource hog and loves to fight with other programs. Why anyone, in this age of enlightenment, would ever put that beast on their computer is beyond me.
That is just my own perception and does not require an answer or argument.

Y'all have a great day now, Y'hear?

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Joined: Mar 06, 2007
Posts: 1244

PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2009 4:17 am    Post subject:

In the time that I was using XP I used ZONEALARM even on an older slower machine than the norm & never had any real issues with it. The main reason I WAS using it was for the bi-directional notifications it gives as I wanted that to monitor my (then) new network setup.

Would I use it now, maybe. Do I NEED it? Probably not.
But I feel, to each his own. There ARE other good firewalls.
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Joined: Nov 29, 2007
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Location: Central FL, USA

PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2009 3:28 pm    Post subject:

The windows firewall protects your PC 100% against hackers wanting to get into your PC. Actually, it puts your PC into Stealth mode so NO-One on the internet even knows you're on-line. They can't attack what they can't see. Wink

I know this goes right over the head of many "users", but if you keep the ET's off of your PC in the first place, there won't be any ET's wanting to "Phone Home".

Back in ancient times I was advised by an IT specialist to get a firewall. He recommended "Black Ice". Well, I bought it (as in, paid real money for it) and installed it thinking I was 100% safe. Then I found, Steve Gibson's web site and I took his Firewall test. I was horrified at how many ports were OPEN, with Black Ice running.

I did some research and found some favorable reviews for "Zone Alarm FREE".
Black Ice went into the ol' bit bucket and ZA FREE took over.
I had several problems with it. Almost weekly, there was one issue or another, but I suffered along with it because I though I needed that kind of protection.
Finally, the day I installed Windows XP's Service Pack 2, I activated its firewall, deleted ZA and I've been a happy camper ever since.

Running a good battery of Computer Security Software, my PC stays 100% free of malware and ET's.

Oh well, that's my experience anyway. Your mileage may vary. Wink

Happy Super Bowl day,
The Doctor Cool
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Joined: Mar 06, 2007
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2009 5:05 pm    Post subject:

You know, M$ firewall is probably the only (security) thing they have that IS worth a ****.
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Joined: Nov 06, 2003
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Location: Central Florida, USA

PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 11:46 pm    Post subject: for some ZoneAlarm best option

ZoneAlarm has had some problems in the past such as the upgrade in 2007 that locked up any PC using less than 1MB RAM. They fixed it after refunding many Pro version users subscriptions and requiring a battery of support techs to give uninstall directions for several operating systems just to be able to return to the free version.
But, then again Quickbooks Pro version back in 1999 had a similar problem as well as Black Ice in 1998. So no one is immune, especially Microsoft.

What Windows firewall can do for you is great, but can it notify you whenever your private passwords or other stored info you choose to protect in it's encrypted vault is about to be sent in a packet to the internet or even your own network in your trusted zone?
It is the extra features and precise program controls you get with Za that make it worth having.
I especially love the unintrusive traffic meter in the system tray that shows volume of packets in and out so I can monitor if my system is bogging down or if I am just waiting for the current site to respond to my request.
If there is traffic when I am not busy surfing, I can always open the control panel and see just what internal process is talking to the web.
These may seem like power users toys, but I have learned a lot about what programs on my PC are always calling home and who is trying to change my browser settings by using the hacker tracking tool built into ZoneAlarm when you click the details link.
Windows firewall may protect you, and thats fine. But don't you want to know when a new network tries to get in using some obscure email watching port?
Maybe just me, but I would like to be notified!
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Joined: Mar 06, 2007
Posts: 1244

PostPosted: Wed Feb 04, 2009 3:03 am    Post subject:

Pretty much what I was going with it, too. As time went on & I learned what was no big deal, I was able to back it off & not have as much flags popping up. So for ME anyway, there never was the "annoyance" issue.
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