Just “Google” Vista’s Firewall and you’ll find mostly negitive reviews … and for good reason. The “Inbound” component works much like the XP SP2 version, in that it passes the ShieldsUP test, however the “Outbound” component is de-activated. This means that all outbound traffic is permitted … ouch!
Now you can activate the Outbound (block all traffic) however Microsoft does not provide any kind of prompt that something wants to make an outbound connection … it just silently fails. I tried this method for several days and came to the conclusion that a “home-user” would trash their machine before they could figure out all the ins-and-outs.
Microsoft should have included the improved version of OneCare’s Firewall interface in Vista.
So now what? … most of the major Firewall programs are not Vista compatable yet … duh! there are several of the so-called “Security Suites” that are compatable, but these are now considered “bloatware” … I did test a freeware add-on “Vista Firewall Control” and found this works fairly well as a program alert. However it fails several basic leak tests including “ping” … so it’s not really ready for prime time.
Looks like we are in for a wait and see … as with most new programs their first versions will have many problems and revisions. What a shame … it doesn’t look like SunBelt is going to make their Kerio Firewall “Vista compatable”?