Advanced Plus Security Gandalf_The_Grey's Laptop Config 2024

Last updated
Jul 12, 2024
How it's used?
For home and private use
Operating system
Windows 11
On-device encryption
BitLocker Device Encryption for Windows
Log-in security
    • Biometrics (Windows Hello PIN, TouchID, Face, Iris, Fingerprint)
Security updates
Allow security updates and latest features
Update channels
Allow stable updates only
User Access Control
Always notify
Smart App Control
Off
Network firewall
Enabled
About WiFi router
Ziggo SmartWifi modem by Sagemcom in bridgemode. TP-Link Deco XE75 mesh system.
Real-time security
Microsoft Defender Antivirus
Firewall security
Microsoft Defender Firewall
About custom security
Hard_Configurator 7.0.0.0
  • Windows_10_Basic_Recommended_Settings
  • ConfigureDefender: High settings
  • DocumentsAntiExploit: MS Office ON1 and Disable VBA in MS Office ON
  • FirewallHardening: Recommended H_C
Windows 11 Pro 24H2
Periodic malware scanners
HitmanPro and Norton Power Eraser
Malware sample testing
I do not participate in malware testing
Environment for malware testing
N/A
Browser(s) and extensions
Microsoft Edge with AdGuard, Bitwarden, Bitdefender TrafficLight and Bonjourr as extensions
Secure DNS
From my ISP (Ziggo)
Desktop VPN
AdGuard VPN
Password manager
Bitwarden browser extension
Maintenance tools
Maintenance tools: CCleaner Professional, Disk Cleanup, Optimize Drives, Autoruns, Driver Store Explorer
Update tools: Patch My PC, UCheck, Driver Easy Pro, LG Update & Recovery, Intel Driver & Support Assistant
File and Photo backup
Windows Backup, OneDrive with Microsoft 365 ransomware protection (always on sync)
Subscriptions
    • Microsoft 365 Family 6TB
System recovery
Windows system image
Risk factors
    • Browsing to popular websites
    • Browsing to unknown / untrusted / shady sites
    • Working from home
    • Making audio/video calls
    • Opening email attachments
    • Buying from online stores, entering banks card details
    • Logging into my bank account
    • Downloading software and files from reputable sites
    • Streaming audio/video content from trusted sites or paid subscriptions
Computer specs
Notable changes
2022.01.01 new config for the new year.
2022.01.31 removed Bitsum Process Lasso, Samsung Magician. Switched from DefenderUI Free and VoodooShield to the all-in-one DefenderUI Pro.
2022.02.12 back to Ziggo Safe Online by F-Secure
2022.02.16 added Quad9 secure DNS
2022.03.22 have to use Adobe Reader for work, removed KVRT.
2022.04.09 trying the AdGuard extension instead of uBlock Origin
2022.04.10 back to uBlock Origin
2022.05.01 removed Ziggo Safe Online, back to Microsoft Defender and installed Kerish Doctor
2022.05.04 installed the latest VoodooShield
2022.05.13 installed fs protection by F-Secure 18.4 beta 2
2022.05.20 back to Microsoft Defender Antivirus and Andy's tools
2022.05.23 changed from ConfigureDefender to DefenderUI
2022.06.07 back to fs protection and VoodooShield
2022.07.18 back to Microsoft Defender Antivirus with DefenderUI and VoodooShield
2022.08.14 reset of Windows 11 and added (back) Simple Windows Hardening
2022.08.31 small changes because of my new laptop
2022.09.06 went from uBlock Origin to AdGuard
2022.09.12 up to date with the latest changes in this form
2022.09.26 back to FS Protection
2022.10.23 reset of Windows 11 22H2 and using Microsoft Defender with ConfigureDefender on high
2022.12.12 filled the new fields and Smart App Control has turned itself off.
2023.01.01 back to FS Protection and running a trial of NoVirusThanks SysHardener
2023.01.29 removed NoVirusThanks SysHardener and switched from AdGuard MV3 to uBlock Origin
2023.03.20 back to Windows buit-in protection configured by Hard_Configurator
2023.03.15 back to Simple Windows Hardening
2023.05.19 up to date with the May 2023 Update of this form
2023.07.05 back to FS Protection
2023.08.17 testing Windows Hybrid Hardening
2024.02.02 using Windows Hybrid Hardening Light an added the I don't care about cookies extension
2024.04.20 removed I don't care about cookies and Bitdefender TrafficLight
2024.04.20 removed McAfee WebAdvisor
2024.04.24 changed from uBlock Origin to AdGuard
2024.06.19 added DefenderUI and switched from AdGuard to uBlock Origin Lite
2024.07.12 changed to Hard_Configurator and the AdGuard extension.
What I'm looking for?

Looking for minimum feedback.

simmerskool

Level 32
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Apr 16, 2017
2,185
-Secure still slows down my browsing somewhat so I'm back to Windows built-in protection configured by Hard_Configurator.
Surprised ,as I'm sensitive to performance / speed and I was running my win10_vm with F-Secure 19.0 last night & thru vpn, and it was fast+, subjectively as fast as Bitdefender free and both are faster than MS Defender + H_C. Both Bitdefender & F-Secure on VM seems as fast win10 hardware host running ESET. And even MS Defender on VM is only slightly behind, but I am lucky enough to have download bandwidth of 500 mbps / and round 250 thru vpn.
 

Gandalf_The_Grey

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Apr 24, 2016
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Surprised ,as I'm sensitive to performance / speed and I was running my win10_vm with F-Secure 19.0 last night & thru vpn, and it was fast+, subjectively as fast as Bitdefender free and both are faster than MS Defender + H_C. Both Bitdefender & F-Secure on VM seems as fast win10 hardware host running ESET. And even MS Defender on VM is only slightly behind, but I am lucky enough to have download bandwidth of 500 mbps / and round 250 thru vpn.
Maybe it is different on a VM? And it is always different between systems and configurations.
For me this feels faster and I can get 350 mbps on wifi, before with F-Secure it was 250 mbps on a 350 mbps connection.
 

simmerskool

Level 32
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Apr 16, 2017
2,185
Maybe it is different on a VM? And it is always different between systems and configurations.
For me this feels faster and I can get 350 mbps on wifi, before with F-Secure it was 250 mbps on a 350 mbps connection.
good to hear, so you think there is (was) slowdown with F-Secure servers? I did not see that here yesterday, but then lately I was spending more time with Bitdefender VM and last 2 days with Linux VM, all I can say FS was standard fast+ for me yesterday.
 
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ForgottenSeer 97327

Maybe it is different on a VM? And it is always different between systems and configurations.
For me this feels faster and I can get 350 mbps on wifi, before with F-Secure it was 250 mbps on a 350 mbps connection.
When I recall right you have a TP-link router. I don't know whether you make use of TP link smart connect feature or air time fairness. When you use smart connect, you should use air time fairness and choose the AV with highest throughput (assuming MD + H_C is as good as F-secure). When you use separate channels than you can disable airtime fairness when you have a 350 mbps connection and a single device only maxes out to 250 mbps. Using 5/7th (250/350) of the maximum capacity could be faster in practice than enabling airtime fairness with 3 clients (350/3 = for longer througput only 1/3 of the 350 mbps per device).

MD is fast, I just switched to Avast Free (also tested Bitdefender and Ziggo's F-Secure) and all were slower than MD when making image backup's.(Avast 15% slower, Bitdefender and F-secure 20% slower). So your feel might reflect actual performance. As said I don't know with how many devices you are usually online, but 250 mbps might be faster in practise than 350 mbps depending on how you have setup your TP-link router and the number of devices usually online.
 

franz

Level 9
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May 29, 2021
407
Surprised ,as I'm sensitive to performance / speed and I was running my win10_vm with F-Secure 19.0 last night & thru vpn, and it was fast+, subjectively as fast as Bitdefender free and both are faster than MS Defender + H_C. Both Bitdefender & F-Secure on VM seems as fast win10 hardware host running ESET. And even MS Defender on VM is only slightly behind, but I am lucky enough to have download bandwidth of 500 mbps / and round 250 thru vpn.
If there is something I test often, it is speed both at Speedtest and others. I use cable, use win10, now have 250mb download and 250mb upload. I regularly test Norton VPN together with Norton 360 delux, PIA together with f-secure, PIA together with Norton, PIA together with Bitdefender and Kaspersky.

With VPV, fastest speed f-secure and PIA, approx. 246 down - 247 mb up, without VPN 252-252. With Norton and PIA 222 up 232 down. Norton and Norton VPN, 230 down, and 226 up. With Kaspersky, about the same as with Norton, and slightly better with Bitdefender, but the best solution for me is f-secure and PIA. I test both day and night.

When I had the 750mb line, the results were exactly the same between the programs just at a higher speed, the same with the 500mb line. Personally, I'm almost never online without a VPN connected, and I then use WireGuard with kill switch and PIA Mace and PIA DNS. ;)
 

Gandalf_The_Grey

Level 79
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Apr 24, 2016
6,861
Did an upgrade to my Wifi with a TP-Link Deco XE75 AXE5400 Tri-band Mesh Wifi 6E-systeem.
Thanks to the new SWH ver. 2.1.1.1 beta from @Andy Ful (added support for Windows 11 ver. 22H2) I'm back with Simple Windows hardening (y)
 

Gandalf_The_Grey

Level 79
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Apr 24, 2016
6,861
Up to date with the latest tools from @Andy Ful
Back to FS Protection by F-Secure, because I couldn't acces my Enphase solar system with Microsoft Defender Antivirus.
And for the reasons listed here:
 
F

ForgottenSeer 97327

Do you also have smart monitors for energy? I have declined aĺl those free smart monitor options. The only hassle it gave me that once every few years they measure and calibrate your analog monitors (but they also do other safety and qyality checks as a bonus, e.g pressure drop for natural gas etc).
 

Gandalf_The_Grey

Level 79
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Apr 24, 2016
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Do you also have smart monitors for energy? I have declined aĺl those free smart monitor options. The only hassle it gave me that once every few years they measure and calibrate your analog monitors (but they also do other safety and qyality checks as a bonus, e.g pressure drop for natural gas etc).
Yes, I have smart monitors. I also have a P1 and a Water monitor from HomeWizard.
 

Gandalf_The_Grey

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Apr 24, 2016
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As illustration some HomeWizard graphs:
1688632135424.png
 

Gandalf_The_Grey

Level 79
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Apr 24, 2016
6,861
Now running (and testing) Windows Hybrid Hardening by @Andy Ful
 

oldschool

Level 83
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Mar 29, 2018
7,283
Now running (and testing) Windows Hybrid Hardening by @Andy Ful
You are a brave man, and a hero! :cool:(y)
 

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