Windows Firewall Control (BiniSoft)

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Petrovic

Level 61
Verified
Apr 25, 2013
5,270
19,742
#21
Windows Firewall Control Review – Seamlessly Manage Internet Access for Programs
The Good

The software utility worked smoothly on Windows 8.1 Pro during our evaluation, without triggering the OS to freeze, crash or pop up error messages. It had an excellent response time and successfully blocked banned applications while remaining low on system resources.

There are four types of rule filtering profiles with predefined settings, and they can be seamlessly accessed from the system tray area while working in other programs.

Users have the possibility to create custom rules, export firewall settings, as well as to specify a profile that will be reverted in case it is switched to a lower filtering profile for installing or updating purposes.

Rules can be secured by automatically ignoring the ones created by other firewall tools aside from Windows Firewall Control. Plus, they can be memorized for the next system logon.

Global hotkeys can be assigned to swiftly bring up the rules and primary panel. The IP address reputation of URLs can be easily verified, while a file's integrity can be checked by calculating its SHA256 hash.

The application can be locked with a password to restrict the access of unauthorized users.

The Bad
Although it's fairly simple to use, the tool does not contain a help file for inexperienced users.

The notifications feature whose level can be adjusted to indicate which blocked outgoing connections should be displayed on screen is only available after registration (not free).

The Truth
We've seen a fair share of security software applications dedicated to managing the Windows Firewall. Taking everything into account, Windows Firewall Control is approachable, effective and resource-friendly, providing users with preset profiles and rule managing options for applications which establish incoming and outgoing connections.


Full Article
 
Dec 29, 2012
236
363
#22
Windows Firewall Control v4.2.0.0
What's new:
- New: The profile displayed in WFC is updated now even if the user changes the settings from outside of WFC (e.g.: Control Panel applet, netsh or WFwAS mmc).
- New: The restore profile set in the Profiles tab is reverted now even if the state of Windows Firewall is modified from outside of WFC.
- New: Added a new confirmation dialog when the user switches from Main Panel to No Filtering profile.
- New: The tray icon will display a balloon tip if the profile is High Filtering at program start-up to inform the user that the network connections are disabled until profile is manually switched.
- Updated: Secure Boot was changed to only set High Filtering on system shutdown when it is enabled. From now on, the user has to switch manually the profile at system start-up if this option is enabled in order to enable network connections. The old implementation had very unpredictable results and did not work always correctly.
- Updated: The logging was updated to provide more detailed messages.
- Updated: Event Viewer launched from the Tools tab will open by default the WFC subcategory.
- Removed: The confirmation dialog that is displayed when a new rule is created was removed. From this version, the confirmation dialog is displayed only when a new rule is created from shell context menu.
- Fixed: High Filtering profile can not be switched off in certain circumstances and "Core Networking - Block all inbound/outbound connections" rules can not be removed.
- Fixed: Temporary Rules are not deleted at WFC restart if Secure Boot is enabled and the computer is restarted.
- Fixed: Last used path is not remembered when exporting a partial policy file.
- Fixed: The toolbox horizontal size is not saved when Rules Panel window is closed.
- Fixed: Multiple rules can be merged even if the selected rules are defined for different protocols. This is not allowed anymore.
- Fixed: Properties dialog of a rule does not appear in the taskbar and if the dialog is minimized, the user can't close Rules Manager from taskbar context menu.
- Fixed: When viewing inbound connections in Connections Log, if the user wants to quickly create a new rule without customizing it, the rule is created for outbound direction instead of inbound.
- Fixed: Uninstall dialog appears in taskbar but the dialog is not focused and the user has to activate the window manually in order to see it.
- Removed
019 = New rules were successfully created to allow connections for
020 = New rules were successfully created to block connections for

- New
042 = Are you sure you want to disable Windows Firewall protection?
043 = Do not show again
321 = High Filtering profile is enabled. All network connections are blocked until the profile is switched manually.

- Updated
320 = Automatically set High Filtering profile on system shut down.

Installation notes: Just use the new installer to update to this new version.

Other info:
Regarding Secure Boot, it seems that depending on the speed of the machine where WFC is installed it may or may not finish the shut down steps that are done by WFC. Unfortunately, the shut down event is not the proper one to execute the required logic because there is not enough time and I can't delay the system shut down process. I tried several variants and always a lot of unpredictable events appeared. So, for now, Secure Boot just sets High Filtering profile at shut down if it is enabled. The users that have problems with start-up programs that create new rules at boot time, must first check the rules list and then switch manually to another filtering profile. Or avoid such programs. This is the best working solution for the moment.

Download location: http://binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe
SHA1: e070e2cb76ee36b62639be8026e7ecdbccc663a9

Source: Post#1161
 
Last edited:

Petrovic

Level 61
Verified
Apr 25, 2013
5,270
19,742
#23
What's new in version 4.2.0.1 (20.11.2014)
- New: In Connections Log a new filter is available in the toolbox. It is now possible
to display only the last entry for an application instead of all consecutive entries.
- Fixed: Rules created from the notification dialog don't have the Group name set.
- Fixed: Time generated column from Connections Log doesn't display the date and time
in the format defined on the local machine.
- Fixed: High Filtering profile is not set on system restart event when Secure Boot
is enabled. It works only on system shutdown event.
New translation strings:
680 = Entries
681 = All entries
682 = Last entry
http://www.binisoft.org/changelog.txt
http://www.binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe
 

NSG001

Level 16
Nov 21, 2011
2,039
738
#24
Windows Firewall Control v.4.2.0.2

What's new:
- New: Added support for all protocols available in WFwAS in Properties dialog.
- Fixed: The hidden notification area from system tray remains open if the user opens the right click context menu on WFC tray icon while the icon is hidden.
- Update: Code refactoring and code cleanup.

Installation notes: Just use the new installer to update to this new version.

Download location: http://binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe
SHA1: 80a42c94df24c5202a5edd483266d2530c459221
 

Petrovic

Level 61
Verified
Apr 25, 2013
5,270
19,742
#25
What's new in version 4.3.0.0 (15.01.2015)

- New: Auto-update feature was added. If it is enabled, it will check only once,
after 20 seconds from the program startup.
- New: Added proxy configuration support when checking for updates.
- Updated: The Shell Integration text displayed in the right context menu of
executable files is now localized based on the corresponding strings from the
translation file.
- Fixed: Merge Rules feature doesn't work correctly when duplicate entries are part
of the input arguments.
- Fixed: The profile is not updated in Profiles tab if the user changes the profile
from WFwAS while a different tab is active in WFC.
- Fixed: NullReferenceException appears if the user opens the Properties dialog,
confirms the changes and then he tries to merge some rules.
- Fixed: "The root Visual of a VisualTarget cannot have a parent" exception appears
when .NET Framework 4.5.2 is installed and the user wants to open the Main Panel.
http://www.binisoft.org/changelog.txt
http://www.binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe
 

Petrovic

Level 61
Verified
Apr 25, 2013
5,270
19,742
#26
What's new in version 4.3.0.1 (16.01.2015)
- Fixed: Duplicate context menu items when Shell Integration is enabled when no
translation file is used and then a translation file is installed.
- Fixed: Auto check for updates checkbox does not remember the last value when
reopening Main Panel window.
- Fixed: Proxy configuration dialog can't be closed if only the address is completed
but no username and password.
- Updated: Added a textbox hint for address in proxy configuration dialog.
http://www.binisoft.org/changelog.txt
http://www.binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe
 
Likes: tonibalas
Y

yigido

Guest
#27
What's new in version 4.4.0.0 (04.02.2015)
- Important: Starting with this version, WFC is targeted to use .NET Framework 4.5.
It improves memory management and works faster with the newest .NET Framework 4.5.2
release. The previous WFC releases were compiled to use .NET 4.0 which is outdated.
- Fixed: Duplicate notifications are displayed for the same program if there are
defined custom rules and PeerBlock or Malwarebytes Anti-Malware are used to block certain IP addresses.
- Fixed: Sometimes, the Activate button remains disabled when the user paste the
activation code from clipboard. This usually happens when the activation code
contains an extra empty space at the end, added when it is copied from the web
browser.
- Fixed: Service combo box selection is not correctly set in Properties dialog for
some services.
- Updated: Added watermark text in textboxes from the notification dialog that may
be empty when customizing a rule.
- Updated: Added 'Open file location' in Manage Rules toolbox and context menu.
- Updated: Added support for language localization for the following columns in
Rules Panel: Location, Active, Action, Direction, Protocol, Interface types.
- Updated: Code refactoring.


 
Jun 10, 2014
317
471
Operating System
Windows 7
#29
This app is pretty awesome, and since the most recent releases... has been updated to rely on the latest .NET framework
 

Petrovic

Level 61
Verified
Apr 25, 2013
5,270
19,742
#30
What's new in version 4.4.2.0 (28.03.2015)
- New: Search function was added to Connections Log similar to the one from Manage
Rules.
- New: Introduced the concept of read only rules. They are displayed with grey text
and cannot be modified or deleted from WFC.
- Fixed: Modifying inbound rules with edge traversal set to 'Defer to user' generates
exceptions in Windows Firewall API. These kind of rules are read only and can't be
modified from WFC.
- Fixed: Unwanted notifications may appear when defining generic rules that should
apply to all programs.
- Fixed: Opening the Properties dialog of a rule fails with an exception for rules
defined with a custom protocol which does not appear in WFC.
- Fixed: Notifications are displayed for svchost.exe when Medium notification is used
if a rule for svchost.exe and remote port IPHTTPS is enabled.
- Fixed: When creating a new rule from the shell integration the direction and the
enabled properties of the existing rules are not taken into consideration.
- Updated: The list of recognized Group names was updated to include new groups from
Windows 10.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
What's new in version 4.4.1.1 (06.03.2015)

- Fixed: Local source and remote IP address is the same in the notification dialog.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
What's new in version 4.4.1.0 (06.03.2015)

- Improved: The notification dialog was modified to accept larger language strings.
A line splitter was added which can be used to modify the width of the content.
- Fixed: A new notification is not displayed for a blocked connection if an existing
rule have set the remote ports and the remote IP addresses.
- Fixed: Local ports are not taken into consideration when the Notifications system
decides if a new notification should be displayed or not.
- Fixed: The path displayed in the notification dialog for the files executed from
a RAM disk is not resolved. Added support for resolving paths from RAM drives.
- Fixed: Sometimes, Windows Firewall determines the path for some programs with the
old 8.3 filename style. It is impossible to create a new rule from the Notification
dialog nor from the Connections Log when such paths are received. Added support for
short names used in paths.
- Fixed: Double click on the data grid scroll bar in Connections Log and New Rules
Wizard views, opens the Properties dialog when an entry is selected.
- Fixed: When an entry is selected in New Rules Wizard, Enter key moves the selection
on the next row instead of opening the Properties dialog.
- Fixed: Toolbox buttons from Rules Panel have truncated labels even if the toolbox
area is enlarged.
- Fixed: The installer/updater gives an unhandled exception if .NET Framework 4.5
is not installed on the machine.
- Fixed: The unlock button from the Notification dialog is disabled when the program
is locked and a new notification is displayed. The user must open Main Panel to unlock
the program.
- Fixed: Old self signed certificates used until WFC 4.0.2.2 are not removed from
the computer even if they are not used anymore. Please answer YES if at the end of
the installation/update you are asked: "Do you want to DELETE the following
certificate from the Root Store?" with the subject "BiniSoft.org".

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
What's new in version 4.4.0.1 (26.02.2015)

- Fixed: When using Low notification level, the rules are not automatically created
for digitally signed programs.
- Fixed: When modifying the Properties of a rule, if the input parameters are not
accepted by Windows Firewall, then it should not appear as modified in Manage Rules
window after closing the Properties dialog. The rule should appear with the original
values.
- Fixed: The recommended rule for Windows Update uses UDP protocol instead of TCP.
http://www.binisoft.org/changelog.txt
http://www.binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe
 
Likes: kram7750

Petrovic

Level 61
Verified
Apr 25, 2013
5,270
19,742
#33
What's new in version 4.4.2.4 (31.03.2015)
- New: Added the possibility to choose between the normal mode and the new enhanced
mode of the notification system. The new enhanced mode will take into consideration
also the generic rules which apply to all programs. The new setting is available in
the Notifications tab from the Main Panel window.
- New: The notification system takes into consideration also the Location. The
notification system checks for matching rules based on the following properties:
local port, remote port, remote address, protocol and location.
- New: Added a new link button named "View change log" in the update dialog so that
the user can open quickly and check what's new before updating to the new version.
http://www.binisoft.org/changelog.txt
http://www.binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe
 

Petrovic

Level 61
Verified
Apr 25, 2013
5,270
19,742
#34
What's new in version 4.4.3.0 (04.04.2015)
- New: Enhanced Mode for notification system, which was introduced in the previous
version, is now integrated in the existing old modes.
- New: Medium notification mode was updated to display notifications but without the
connections attempts of programs located in C:\Windows and its subfolders.
- New: High notification mode was updated to display notifications for all programs,
including system ones located in Windows folder and its subfolders.
- Update: The light gray color of read only rules was changed to dark grey to improve
the readability.
http://www.binisoft.org/changelog.txt
http://www.binisoft.org/download/wfc4setup.exe