How to Set Windows 7 Firewall Rules

Why learn how to set Windows 7 firewall rules? Windows 7 isn't coming out until October, right? Well, after the much-maligned Windows Vista hit stores with a thud three years ago, Microsoft started ramping up its newest version of Windows, and it's slated to be on shelves this fall with beefed-up security to boot. A new operating system means a new firewall, and, since safe Web browsing is crucial to the protection of your data, you should know what to expect regarding the Windows 7 firewall.

Firewall security is important to keeping your computer safe from hackers, viruses and malware that lurk in the recesses of the World Wide Web. Luckily, Windows 7 features brand-new firewall protection, and it's designed to be the most user-friendly firewall Windows has ever offered. Let's take a look.

Different Settings For Different Networks
You'll be able to access the firewall settings through the Control Panel under the tab Windows Firewall. Here, you'll be able to configure firewall settings for home uses, work networks and the public internet. You'll be able to list your privacy settings, configure a network and choose what information you want share over the network. Being able to place individual settings for all three types of networks is especially advantageous for laptop users who won't have to keep changing firewall settings when they travel.

Ability To Change Inbound And Outbound Rules
Windows 7 users will also have the ability to create custom settings and new rules for the firewall. Under the Advanced Settings tab, there will be links in the upper left panel to create new inbound or outbound rules by blocking or allowing use of certain ports. Inbound rules dictate what is allowed into your computer via the Internet, and outbound rules dictate what information can be sent from your computer over the Internet. You'll need to know a little more about Internet connectivity to navigate the Advanced Settings and adjust the regular settings as you see fit. If you need stricter settings, once you understand Internet ports, creating new rules is fairly straightforward.

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