Advanced Security oldschool's 2022 laptop configuration

Last updated
Jun 23, 2022
About
Personal, primary device
Additional PC users
Not shared with other users
Desktop OS
Windows 11
OS edition
Pro
Login security
    • Password (Aa-Zz, 0-9, Symbols)
Primary sign-in
Local account
Primary user
Standard user - Limited permissions
Security updates
Default - allow security updates
Windows UAC
Maximum - always notify
Network firewall
ISP-issued router
Real-time protection
Microsoft Defender
Software firewall
Microsoft Defender Firewall
Custom RTP, Firewall and OS settings
Default with ASR rules enabled:
- block JS/VBS from launching downloaded executable content
- block execution of potentially obfuscated scripts
- block executable content from email client and webmail
- block process creations originating from PSExe and WMI commands
- use advanced protection from ransomware
- block persistence through WMI event subscription

Controlled Folder Access enabled with added folders:
- C:\Program Data\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu
- C:\Users\oldshool\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch
- C:\Users\oldschool\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

RunBySmartscreen
Custom exploit protection settings for all apps
Malware testing
No malware samples
Periodic security scanners
EEK | KVRT
Secure DNS
Quad 9
VPN
None
Password manager
Browsers, Search and Addons
Brave Startpage | Brave Adblock | Emsisoft Browser Security
Firefox Startpage | µBO + Kees1958 lists | Emsisoft Browser Security | strict tracking | total cookie protection | Firefox Privacy or: How I Learned to Stop Hardening and Love Strict Tracking Protection
Edge Startpage | µBO + Kees1958 lists | Emsisoft Browser Security | Strict tracking protection
Maintenance and Cleaning
Windows built-in
Personal Files & Photos backup
Copy/Paste
Personal backup routine
Manual (maintained by self)
Device recovery & backup
Wiindows built-in | Aomei Backupper
Device backup routine
Manual (maintained by self)
PC activity
  1. Browsing the web. 
  2. Emails. 
  3. Shopping. 
  4. Downloading software. 
Computer specs
Lenovo L340 Intel(R) Core(TM) i3-8145U CPU @ 2.10GHz 2.30 GHz 8.00 GB RAM 1TB HDD
Personal changelog
22-1-9 Added VodooShield Pro v. 7.0
22-1-28 Removed TinyWall | Changed to Ghostery in Edge & Firefox
22-1-31 Removed VoodooShield
22-5-5 Removed VoodooShield
22-6-17 Switched to Bitdefender Free
22-6-23 Replaced Bitdefender with M$ Defender
Feedback Response

General feedback

Kiss

Level 2
Oct 6, 2021
79
Maybe a better name would be... "The MT Living Legend's Optimized Security Masterpiece."

As a Level 66 MalwareTips Living Legend that we all look up to... we seek your wisdom and guidance.

I don't make a single security move without checking in to see what ole' Oldschool recommends.

So when you are out vacationing the world... some of us are stuck in security decision paralysis.

That is all.
Are you his boyfriend? 👀
 

Thales

Level 13
Verified
Top poster
Well-known
Nov 26, 2017
643
Interesting, I’ve been considering running at just default and enabling PUA stuff in the GUI. It’s probably plenty for me, and if it improves performance then what the heck. I do have OSA to cover some extras, and it has zero impact, other than false positives.
With this combo I would do the same.
OSA is amazing even at the default level.

Yeah, default at the moment. Might raise it to high a few days later to try to notice the difference in impact. I think setting cloud level to Highest aka High+ causes the most impact. MS's official documents clearly states that this will impact performance and may increase false positives. But have to say even MS at default is not as light as ESET followed closely by Norton and Kaspersky on my system excluding web page loading speed. MD's caching isn't as good (Probably intentionally due to its high cloud reliance).
Interesting. I have never experienced any system impact with High+
Not even on my old laptop which is not strong.
 

oldschool

Level 67
Thread author
Verified
Top poster
Well-known
Mar 29, 2018
5,646
Updated config to Startpage as default search engine. I've been using it often as my fallback option to Brave Search which gets average results, so I decided to replace it.

Added some real-time protection details. Excellent built-in protection with no usability drawbacks.
 

oldschool

Level 67
Thread author
Verified
Top poster
Well-known
Mar 29, 2018
5,646
I'm now using Brave and Firefox as my primary browsers since Edge is too buggy, e.g. intermittent crashing, stalling on close, etc. I've been using Edge because I like its design and have reported bugs regularly but I won't go back until I know it's fixed. I'm finding the Brave Sidebar feature serves me much like Edge's Favorites flyout, it just takes getting used to it on the left.

Updated config to show µBo with Kees1958 suggested lists in Firefox and Edge. I let the browsers do most of the blocking with some help from NextDNS.
 
Last edited:

Trooper

Level 15
Verified
Top poster
Well-known
Aug 28, 2015
732
I'm now using Brave and Firefox as my primary browsers since Edge is too buggy, e.g. intermittent crashing, stalling on close, etc. I've been using Edge because I like its design and have reported bugs regularly but I won't go back until I know it's fixed. I'm finding the Brave Sidebar feature serves me much like Edge's Favorites flyout, it just takes getting used to it on the left.

Updated config to show µBo with Kees1958 suggested lists in Firefox and Edge. I let the browsers do most of the blocking with some help from NextDNS.

That's cool. I have not had any issues with Edge myself.
 

Sorrento

Level 4
Dec 7, 2021
190
Updated config to Startpage as default search engine. I've been using it often as my fallback option to Brave Search which gets average results, so I decided to replace it.

Added some real-time protection details. Excellent built-in protection with no usability drawbacks.
When I've used StartPage on a few occasions it reacts like Google Search when using a VPN & feels I'm a robot or similar. I'm pretty sure I'm not though?
 

SecureKongo

Level 29
Verified
Top poster
Well-known
Feb 25, 2017
1,835
I'm now using Brave and Firefox as my primary browsers since Edge is too buggy, e.g. intermittent crashing, stalling on close, etc. I've been using Edge because I like its design and have reported bugs regularly but I won't go back until I know it's fixed. I'm finding the Brave Sidebar feature serves me much like Edge's Favorites flyout, it just takes getting used to it on the left.

Updated config to show µBo with Kees1958 suggested lists in Firefox and Edge. I let the browsers do most of the blocking with some help from NextDNS.
So you are using Quad9 syste-wide and NextDNS in your browsers?
 

oldschool

Level 67
Thread author
Verified
Top poster
Well-known
Mar 29, 2018
5,646
I'm liking Brave again and I'm finding the sidebar feature really useful, much better than on initial use. It's good to be enjoying the built-in goodness again. Highly recommend it if you haven't tried it yet. (y)(y)
 

brambedkar59

Level 24
Verified
Top poster
Well-known
Apr 16, 2017
1,306
I'm liking Brave again and I'm finding the sidebar feature really useful, much better than on initial use. It's good to be enjoying the built-in goodness again. Highly recommend it if you haven't tried it yet. (y)(y)
Haven't used Brave for a while on desktop, might give it another shot. On Android it's still my default browser since 2020.