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The need of firewall when Morro takes over RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I am aware of the future offering from Microsoft, where Morro will replace OneCare. Morro comes with no firewall. So OneCare users will need a firewall to replace the one that comes with OneCare.
    In my case Norton Internet Security is no option I would like to return to. So, what do you fellow people in this forum chuuse as replacement for the OneCare Firewall ?
    I sure will miss OneCare and it still puzzle me, why MS choose to discontinue this product, instead of modification...

    Thanks for any good advice that might come my way.

    Anders.
    ASH
    Wednesday, August 5, 2009 9:07 AM

All replies

  • Personally, I see no need to anything more than the Windows firewall, which will be enabled upon removal of OneCare.
    -steve
    Microsoft MVP Windows Live / Windows Live OneCare, Live Mesh, & MS Security Essentials Forums Moderator
    Wednesday, August 5, 2009 11:59 AM
    Moderator
  • Thanks, Steve, for your prompt reply.
    As far as I know the Windows firewall (in my case Windows XP Pro) can not be manually configured. Also, why did the OneCare team add a firewall to the suite, if the Windows firewall is sufficient - I just wonder...
    Anders.
    ASH
    Wednesday, August 5, 2009 5:14 PM
  • Actually, Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE, was Morro) is merely a modification of OneCare, albeit a relatively radical one.  The anti-malware components that compose MSE are exactly the same ones contained in OneCare, it simply doesn't include any of the other features.

    If you look over the entire situation completely, the likely reasons become clear.

    First, Windows Vista and 7 both include automation of things like defragmentation within the intital configuration of the operating system itself.  Windows 7 also includes a decent backup program that both organizes data in ways similar to OneCare and/or allows you to use the more classic file system method if you prefer.  It also includes the ability to select virtually any type of device as your backup target, so in that respect it's even better than OneCare.

    Second, Windows Vista has already been shown to be much more effective at protecting itself from malware.  This is borne out by the results of the reporting done semi-annually and displayed in the graphs on this Microsoft Protection Center blog page about the Microsoft Security Intelligence Report (SIR).  Much of this is due to design changes in the newer OS, which were improved even more with Windows 7.  This includes changes in the built-in firewall as well as things like Windows Updates and portions of the core operating system itself.

    Finally, though technically Windows XP with Service Pack 3 will continue to be supported, it has no longer been officially sold directly to consumers for over a year.  The OS is now over 8 years old and has become difficult to support in a security sense.  Though it will officially continue to be supported with critical security updates until August 2014, I personally wouldn't plan on using it for near that long.  I currently only have one system remaining running Windows XP myself and will seriously consider upgrading that to Windows 7 once it's released.

    If you consider this overall situation and the cost of an add-on security suite plus other utilities, it quickly becomes apparent that upgrading the OS itself might be more cost effective and provide more consitency if you have multiple PCs.  Even if your only PC isn't slated for replacement, as long as it meets the requirements it may be more cost effective to upgrade.

    Of course, not everyone is in a position to upgrade, either due to lack of meeting the minimum upgrade requirements or simply the funds to make it happen.  However, it's quite clear that maintaining security with the Windows XP operating system is becoming costly in both time and money, so at some point everyone will need to make a decision which is the greater cost.

    Rob
    Wednesday, August 5, 2009 6:06 PM
    Moderator
  • You're correct. The XP firewall is not easily configured. It does provide protection from inbound threats. I suspect that my fellow moderator, Rob, might step in, but the bottom line is that a two way firewall confuses more people than it helps protect. As for why it was included in OneCare, I suspect that it was included because it was part of the overall suite of protection. I would imagine that the maintenance of the rules was costly and that the support costs were high.
    -steve
    Microsoft MVP Windows Live / Windows Live OneCare, Live Mesh, & MS Security Essentials Forums Moderator
    Wednesday, August 5, 2009 6:09 PM
    Moderator
  • As for the firewall itself, along with the confusion it creates a personal firewall generally causes more problems than it resolves.  This is because an incorrect answer to a prompt can result in an application being blocked and a major support issue as a result.  Since the primary reason for a frewall is to reduce the likely hood of a need for support due to a security incident, it has thus just cancelled its own purpose for existing.

    If you look carefully at both the timing and abilities of the original release of OneCare, they were generally intended to support Windows XP, since that was the only consumer operating system generally supported by Microsoft at that time.  There are now other, better and far more secure options within the operating system family itself.

    Rob
    Wednesday, August 5, 2009 6:23 PM
    Moderator
  • Thanks to both you, Steve and you, Rob.

    Until Windows 7 Pro will be available, and I find time to upgrade the computers of the family, the Windows firewall combined with MSE should be sufficient, as far I enterpret both your replies.

    Thanks for your advice and interest in the matter.

    Anders.

    One last thing: Do any of you know how to remove the OneCare tab from the Event Viewer (might be a registry thing but I am quite familiar with the Registry)
    ASH
    Thursday, August 6, 2009 8:04 AM
  • You're welcome. And, I see that Rob was composing his reply as I was speculating that he would be answering. :-)
    Yes, MSE and the Windows firewall will provide very good protection.
    I've never thought about removing the tab from the Event Viewer, so I don't know how to do that.
    -steve
    Microsoft MVP Windows Live / Windows Live OneCare, Live Mesh, & MS Security Essentials Forums Moderator
    Thursday, August 6, 2009 11:31 AM
    Moderator