Windows Firewall Control 6.0 is out - gHacks Tech News

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Windows Firewall Control 6.0 is out

Malwarebytes, new owner of Windows Firewall Control, released Windows Firewall Control 6.0.0.0 to the public on February 26, 2019.

The new version is not the first release under the Malwarebytes umbrella, but it is the first major release as indicated by the version bump to 6.0.

The new version introduces the Malwarebytes branding to the application and makes other interface changes for the most part.

Existing users may receive an update notification in the version of Windows Firewall Control that is installed on their device.

windows firewall control 6

The selection of "yes" when prompted to download and update to the new version results in a notification prompt shortly thereafter that highlights that it is not possible to perform an in-place upgrade to the new version.

Malwarebytes asks users to uninstall the current version of Windows Firewall Control manually before they run the installer again.

windows firewall control update

Users may need to download Windows Firewall Control 6.0.0.0 from the official website to do so.

Note: You may want to export firewall rules and user settings first before you remove the old version to install the new.  Select Options > Export user settings to a file and RulesExport Windows Firewall rules to a file to do so. You may lose existing rules or settings otherwise.

I have uploaded the last release version of Windows Firewall Control, version 5.4.1, as a mirror just in case. Download it with a click on the following link: Windows Firewall Control 5.x

Note: if the download link is not working, try this one:

Malwarebytes Windows Firewall Control

malwarebytes windows firewall control

The first thing that existing users will notice after the upgrade is that the interface changed significantly. It looks similar to the interface of other Malwarebytes products and carries the Malwarebytes branding.

Tip: Select Rules > Import Windows Firewall rules from a file and Options > Import user settings from a file to import settings and rules from the previous version.

The new dashboard highlights the state of the firewall, inbound and outbound connections, and the location. You cannot interact with these there, however. It would be nice if you could click on a status to change it.

A click on profiles shows that filtering is set to low by default and not medium; Notifications are set to disabled for outbound connections. You may want to change those to "display notifications" instead or "learning mode".

You will notice that the configuration options look identical to those of previous versions.  The shell, the menu on the left side, changed in the new version but the actual options appear to be the same.

The changelog on the official Binisoft website highlights two additional changes.

  1. Users may change the language of the interface under Options now directly.
  2. The user manual was converted to PDF from CHM. You can load it with a tap on the F1 key or the selection of the question mark icon.

Malwarebytes made a change to profile switching next to that which improves the handling of inbound connections. Inbound connections are blocked automatically if the user switches profiles if they are allowed by default.

Closing Words

The requirement to remove the old installation before installing the new version is problematic. It will certainly leave some users behind; those who don't or can't go through the process, and those who prefer to stick with the old version to avoid the new version.

Memory usage increased a bit in the new version but not nearly as much as it did when Malwarebytes released version 3.0 of the company's main security program.

Now You: What is your take on the new version?

Summary
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Author Rating
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3 based on 9 votes
Software Name
Windows Firewall Control 6.0
Operating System
Windows
Software Category
Security
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Comments

  1. Kalle said on February 27, 2019 at 10:00 am
    Reply

    I can’t see the link for version 5.4.1

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on February 27, 2019 at 12:16 pm
      Reply

      Should be there now, sorry for that!

    2. Tone said on February 28, 2019 at 6:20 am
      Reply

      Another vote for Sphinx Firewall Control – free version, works perfectly.

  2. noemata said on February 27, 2019 at 10:17 am
    Reply

    great. this was (for me) the best and most useful app when i was still working on windows. and really scary at the same time. you just have to open the windows settings or the explorer and data will be sent to the web. connections to ms. whois gave concrete answers.

    do not forget the facts, do not forget PRISM and all the companys that were and still are involved.

  3. DAWDAD said on February 27, 2019 at 10:49 am
    Reply

    Another dev sells out to Malwarebytes.

    1. T J said on February 27, 2019 at 1:16 pm
      Reply

      @ DAWDAD

      Alexandru Dicu, the developer of WFC, released the first version, WFC 1.6, in June 2010. Until version 5.3.1, he requested a $10 donation to access all the features, including real time monitoring.
      When Martin reviewed WFC 5.3.1 , there were quite a few comments made about having to (oh horror) PAY for the full version.
      I was happy to donate $10 for a Lifetime licence because it is one of the best Windows firewall configuration programs. Putting the $10 donation into context, this would buy a couple of Starbucks or Costa “coffees”.
      It would seem that many users believe that all software should be free, forgetting that the developers need cash to live.

      Your comment “Another dev sells out to Malwarebytes.” is crass.
      Alexandru has finally decided that, instead of relying on donations, he would like to be paid properly for his efforts and joined Malwarebytes.
      Would you, DAWDAD, work for peanuts or would you prefer a regular income.

      NB Both Alexandru and Malwarebytes have stated that WFC will NOT be incorporated into Malwarebytes Anti Malware.

      1. Chuck W said on February 27, 2019 at 5:05 pm
        Reply

        Well said.

      2. JPW said on February 28, 2019 at 12:08 pm
        Reply

        I happily paid for WFC three times.

        I’m still using 5.3.1.0 and see no need to upgrade to later versions.

      3. Anonymous said on March 9, 2019 at 12:37 am
        Reply

        I paid and yes he is a sellout

  4. thebrowser said on February 27, 2019 at 11:25 am
    Reply

    I for one I’m a big fan of Simple Wall and its simplicity. It has all the functionality that is expected of a firewall and it does it well, without any of the hassle of setting up complex rules (which of course you can still do if you like). Easy to setup and effective, it just works!

  5. Anonymous said on February 27, 2019 at 1:43 pm
    Reply

    Malwarebytes… this name chills up my spine. At the opposite Simplewall is relaxing, https://github.com/henrypp/simplewall/releases

  6. Henk said on February 27, 2019 at 2:26 pm
    Reply

    Great idea to offer the LNG version for download here! I have 5.4.0 and would really like to have 5.4.1 for keepers! That one is hard to find online, most sites offer 6.0.0 now, and finding the right download is even harder because the 5.4.0 and 5.4.1 files share the same identical file name. So I really appreciate the gesture to offer the right download.

    Unfortunately, here on Ghacks both the automatic download and the “please click here to start it manually” link just don’t work for me. They don’t work in Firefox, they don’t work in Vivaldi, and they don’t work (my desperate try…) in IE. Clicking the “please click here to start it manually” link just keeps reloading the same page instead of starting a download.

    1. Bananaxx said on February 27, 2019 at 3:07 pm
      Reply
    2. Anonymous said on February 27, 2019 at 3:08 pm
      Reply
    3. Alexandru Dicu said on February 27, 2019 at 4:28 pm
      Reply

      Use the official links below.

      Last version with old interface:
      https://www.binisoft.org/download/old/5410/wfc5setup.exe

      Last version before Malwarebytes acquisition:
      https://www.binisoft.org/download/old/5310/wfc5setup.exe

      Last version that works on Windows Vista and Server 2008:
      https://www.binisoft.org/download/old/4960/wfc4setup.exe

      You’re welcome,
      The developer

      1. Dave said on February 28, 2019 at 3:48 am
        Reply

        Thanks for your continued support Alex.

  7. Eder said on February 27, 2019 at 3:09 pm
    Reply

    Download link for older version 5.4.1 not working, tested on 3 different browsers and page keep reloading and download doesn’t start.

    1. Dave said on February 27, 2019 at 4:24 pm
      Reply

      @ Eder Same here, most likely privacy extensions LOL The link from Bananaxx worked for me.

      I too was very unhappy that malwarebytes aquired this product. I’m quite sure they will ruin it due to greed. I won’t be updating either.

      I don’t begrudge Alex, $10 was an insanely cheap price, one that I too paid very quickly after trying the free version of WFC.

    2. pHROZEN gHOST said on February 27, 2019 at 4:35 pm
      Reply

      Anonymous has provided a working link to the file. It works fine.

  8. Chuck W said on February 27, 2019 at 4:15 pm
    Reply

    I discovered WFC shortly after Alexandru made it freeware, version 5.4.0.0 (01.08.2018). I liked it, and donated. I can’t find it now, but somewhere during my looking around regarding the version upgrade and Malwarebytes branding, I saw a statement from Malwarebytes saying something like “The software will remain free for the foreseen future”. That is of some concern, but I guess if I’m going to continue using it I will have to upgrade to version 6, since v5.4.1.0 nags you often about the new version being available.

    1. Alexandru Dicu said on February 27, 2019 at 4:38 pm
      Reply

      You can uncheck the Automatic check for updates check box and you won’t be notified anymore.

      1. Chuck W said on February 28, 2019 at 12:29 am
        Reply

        Thanks, Alexandru. I didn’t see it.

  9. Anonymous said on February 27, 2019 at 5:18 pm
    Reply

    Anyone have the MD5/SHAx hashes of the 5.4.1 installer?

    1. Decklan said on February 27, 2019 at 7:49 pm
      Reply

      These are:

      Version: 5.4.1.0
      Date: 03 January, 2019
      SHA256: 8dd146f054d1667187d11d242e51877b480d69061695991573940bde7f2d6285

  10. Darren said on February 27, 2019 at 9:52 pm
    Reply

    Here is the behind the scenes info on this topic for anyone interested:

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/threads/windows-firewall-control-wfc-by-binisoft-org.347370/

  11. stefann said on February 27, 2019 at 11:45 pm
    Reply

    Flat and ugly. Flat and ugly. That is how most UI is today. I avoid them as much as i can.

    1. Ali said on March 18, 2019 at 9:34 pm
      Reply

      Completely Agree
      Also most websites became like this.
      i usually zoom out so websites be more clean and minimal :/

  12. VioletMoon said on February 28, 2019 at 12:59 am
    Reply

    I suppose something simply like Comodo Firewall would be an inappropriate mention here.

  13. Phillip said on February 28, 2019 at 3:37 am
    Reply

    Also ugly (compared to version 7.5), but at least there is a free version:
    http://www.sphinx-soft.com/Vista/order.html

  14. Anonymous said on February 28, 2019 at 6:51 am
    Reply

    Took a couple of minutes to work out the default ‘Display Notifications’ set at Disabled was the cause of the block. Other than that the transition from old to new went well. Version is now 6.0.1.0.

  15. dodeskaden said on February 28, 2019 at 8:50 am
    Reply

    Btw, 6.0.1.0 is out…

  16. Alex said on March 1, 2019 at 10:25 am
    Reply

    Fantastic software. It’s one of those rare situations when software is intuitive and actually enjoyable to use. Well done to the brilliant developer, both technically and ethically.

  17. Ali said on March 18, 2019 at 9:37 pm
    Reply

    Thank you dear developer for creating such a great software.
    I love you :3
    Thank you for this many years working on this great software.

  18. wangychungy said on April 13, 2019 at 2:04 am
    Reply

    Thanks for the info.. I’ve been using Firewall App Blocker (Fab) v1.6, which is free and basic, for blocking exe files with some simple right-click mouse functions. Good for blocking some software from calling home. It likewise uses Windows firewall. Also, you can export your settings to other computers.

  19. mwfc said on September 27, 2019 at 1:56 am
    Reply

    Is there any way to not block, but warn when automatic rules are created? Steam is especially guilty of doing that for its progams and there are even viruses getting sold on that platform: https://old.reddit.com/r/Steam/comments/d91vze/software_i_bought_on_steam_got_detected_as_a_virus/

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