If you are running Windows Firewall on your operating system, and most Windows users probably are, then you know that the firewall is not the easiest to configure.
Adding, editing or removing blocked applications or processes for example takes time, as you need to open the firewall control menu first to do so.
To do so, you open the Windows Firewall from the start menu or Control Panel, select Inbound or Outbound Rules, click on New Rule, and configure the new rule to control the connections made by a program.
Repeat the process for each program that you want to control, and you will notice that time flies by fast.
Firewall App Blocker has been designed for a single purpose: to improve adding program rules to Windows Firewall.
You can start the portable program right after you have unpacked it on your system. The interface is empty by default.
To add programs, drag & drop them into the interface. Alternatively, use the add button in the interface to add programs via the file browser.
Each program is listed with its name and file location in the interface. You can start any program from here with a double-click.
All programs that you add are automatically added to the rule set of Windows Firewall. You can verify that easily by selecting Options > Firewall Settings from the toolbar.
This opens the Windows Firewall control panel. Here you need to switch to the outbound rules listing, where you should see all programs that you have added listed at the top.
A right-click on an item in the program's interface opens a context menu with lots of options. You can unblock select programs here easily, which can be useful to allow Internet connections temporarily, for instance for updates.
Unblocked programs are listed in black, while blocked applications in red.
The context menu offers other features. You can block, unblock or delete all items at once, open a file's location or file properties, or delete or rename individual files from it.
There is also an option to reset the firewall configuration under Options > Reset Firewall Settings.
If you are using multiple devices, you may find the export and import feature useful. Use it to export the block list from one PC to all other PCs that you own. Note that it works best for installed software programs, and portable programs that you store in the same directory structure.
If you do not like to use the native Windows Firewall controls to block or unblock programs, then you may want to give Firewall App Blocker a try.
It simplifies the process significantly, especially if you place it in a location where you can run it directly.
It is ideal for cases where you need to block and unblock programs regularly, and to transfer the block list of programs to other computer systems.
All in all a handy program for Windows Firewall users.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.