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Antimalware, firewall, and other security programs for Windows XP working in 2023 and hopefully beyond


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Antimalware, firewall, and other security programs for Windows XP working in 2023 and hopefully beyond

I hereby open a new thread on the topic of security programs for Windows XP. I have been thinking about that for a longer time, and then I decided to tackle this project. :yes:
Windows XP is a very old operating system and a deeper knowledge of how to make it more secure is very important in my opinion. Therefore, I think it makes sense to get an overview of all the security programs still available for Windows XP. The thread "Which Antiviruses are Known for a Fact to be Working on XP SP3 as of 2019?",

where I have previously written frequently about antivirus programs, has become rather bloated and confusing due to many informationless posts, is mainly focused on the topic of antivirus programs for Windows XP and has been completely unstructured from the very beginning. It is good to have such a thread full of different information for reference but there are many posts either outdated, incomplete or off-topic.  Therefore, I have decided to start a completely different thread from scratch. I deliberately chose the term antimalware in the title of this topic. In these days, most so-called antivirus programs can not only identify computer viruses, but also trojans, worms, rootkits, exploits, spyware, and so on. Generally speaking: a virus is a malware, but a malware is not always a virus. Therefore, malware is a generic term for any malicious software, including viruses. For many years now, the so-called antivirus programs have actually been antimalware programs.

In any case, this new topic here is about antimalware, firewall and other security programs for Windows XP. Under the term other security programs, I include among others security suites like internet security and total security, antivirus, antispyware, anti-rootkit, anti-exploit, online and offline scannerad blocker, protection layer, virtualization, security check and control programs and so on that make the use of Windows XP safer. And to avoid any misunderstanding, the main focus in this thread is on the concept of security. Those security programs that have been officially classified as insecure or not trustworthy are not the subject of consideration here, of course. Furthermore, many of these security programs can no longer be clearly classified in one of these categories due to their multifunctionality.

I therefore define the following categories and their abbreviations:

AM+ = Antimalware program with real-time protection
AM- = Antimalware program without real-time protection
SP  = Specialized program (focused on one main antimalware function)
IS  = Internet Security
TS  = Total Security
ON  = Online scanner
OF  = Offline scanner
AB  = Ad blocker
FW  = Firewall
VP  = Virtualization program
PL  = Protection layer program
SC  = Security check program
CP  = Control program
MF  = Multifunctional program

In addition, for the sake of simplicity, I define the following licence types and their abbreviations, reduced to the essentials:

C = Commercial (any payment software including shareware)
F = Free
D = Donationware
O = Open source

In the second post of this thread, I will provide and maintain an alphabetical list of working antimalware, firewall, and other security programs for Windows XP which were each presented in a corresponding post here. This list has the following columns: Name, Version, Type, Date and Link. Name means the name of the program, Version means its last/latest version, Type means its license type, Date means its last/latest date of release or creation (in some cases, there is no date of release available anymore) and Link means the link to its corresponding post here in this thread. I will only include programs in this list that receive updates in some form, be it program updates, definition updates or database updates. With the exception, of course, that there are also programs that do not necessarily need such updates.

In the third post of this thread, I will create and maintain an alphabetical list of programs that need to be tested for compatibility, features and support or whose installers have been lost and therefore could not be tested.

In the fourth post of this thread, I will create an alphabetical list of programs that have recently been abandoned or should be avoided. Some of them should only be used for a while or be avoided due to security reasons.

This project is very extensive and involves a lot of work. repareordi.gif
In-depth research in particular is very time-consuming, but necessary. So be patient, especially if the list of programs fills up slowly! sablierr.gif As always: Good things come to those who waitblablaoreille.gif And just for clarification, I will not check all the programs myself to see if they can be installed properly and work, of course. Here, other members can make a perfect contribution with their knowledge or experiences already made. Furthermore, all the programs I have listed are not necessarily to be understood as recommendations. Basically, they are simply options that are still available for Windows XP. Because we all know that most manufacturers of security software have long since given up on Windows XP. If I personally consider a program to be good, I will express this in its relevant post. More about that here:

Any discussions, questions or suggestions about security programs for Windows XP are explicitly welcome. But one thing must be very clear, everything should relate to this topic. Just for clarification, insulting, provocative or completely off-topic posts (especially about operating systems other than Windows XP) will not be tolerated. snegatif.gif That means, please stay on topic! This thread is intended to be a well-structured source of information where readers can get ideas on how to make their old Windows XP a bit more secure. If you like this thread, or you find it interesting and helpful, I would appreciate any contribution, be it a comment, a like or an upvote. Thanks for your interest! Windows XP forever! :thumbup

Kind regards, AstroSkipper firewall.gif

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Alphabetical list of working antimalware, firewall, and other security programs for Windows XP

All explanations according to this list can be found in the first post of this thread.

Name                                     Version                 Type          Licence    Date             Link

360 Total Security                 AM+               F           18.12.2019   Link
Avast Free Antivirus           18.8.4084.0          AM+               F           15.11.2018   Link
Avast Internet Security     18.8.4084.0          AM+               C           15.11.2018   Link
Avast Premier                      18.8.4084.0          AM+               C           15.11.2018   Link
AVG AntiVirus Free             18.8.4084.0          AM+               F           26.11.2018   Link
CurrPorts                               2.77                       CP                   F            13.12.2023   Link
eScanAV Anti-Virus            22.0.60                  AM- OF          F           26.04.2023   Link
Toolkit (MWAV)
InSpectre                               0.0.6675.8            SC                   F            21.04.2019   Link
Look 'n' Stop Firewall        2.07                       FW                  C            17.10.2009   Link
Malware Hunter                  AM- OF          F            01.04.2024   Link
Malware Hunter Pro          AM+               C            01.04.2024   Link
Malwarebytes Free               AM- OF          F           08.05.2018   Link
Malwarebytes Premium             AM+              C           08.05.2018   Link
Panda Free Antivirus         22.02.01                AM+              F            27.12.2023   Link
PC Tools Firewall Plus               FW                  F           01.12.2010   Link
Process Hacker                    2.39 (r124)           MF CP           O           29.03.2016   Link
RogueKiller                          15.15.3                  AM-                F           11.03.2024
Anti-Malware Free
RogueKiller                          15.15.3                  AM+              C           11.03.2024
Anti-Malware Premium
Shadow Defender                   VP                  C           02.08.2020   Link
Spectre Online                                                    SC                  F            08.01.2018   Link
Browser Test
Spybot – Search &                     AM- OF         F            01.07.2014   Link
Destroy Free Edition
Ultra Adware Killer                    SP                  F            09.05.2023   Link
Ultra Virus Killer                         MF                 F            29.03.2023   Link
Windows 10 Firewall           FW                 F            06.01.2016   Link
Control Free XP
Windows 10 Firewall           FW                 C           06.01.2016   Link
Control Plus XP

Zemana AntiMalware             AM-                F           21.08.2017   Link
Zemana AntiMalware             AM+              C           21.08.2017   Link

Name                                     Version                 Type          Licence    Date             Link


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Alphabetical list of programs that need to be tested for compatibility, features and support or whose installers have been lost

Name                   Version            Type                Link     Status

Vir.IT eXplorer   9.5                   AM-/AM+     Link    Further detailed user experiences,
Lite/Pro                                                                           reviews, tests and screenshots needed


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Alphabetical list of programs that have recently been abandoned or should be avoided

Name                                         Version                 Type     Date              Link     Reason
Avast Free Antivirus 2015     10.4.2233.1299   AM+    17.09.2015    Link     Abandoned
† November of 2023

Bitdefender Antivirus            AM+    19.04.2016    Link     Abandoned
Free Edition
† EOL: December 2021
† EOS: June 30, 2022

Kaspersky Free Antivirus            AM+    27.08.2018    Link    Should be avoided
† June of 2023

Malwarebytes                          AM-      09.04.2013   Link     Abandoned
Anti-Malware Free

† March of 2024

Malwarebytes                          AM+     09.04.2013   Link     Abandoned
Anti-Malware Pro

† March of 2024

Malwarebytes                            AM+     18.03.2016   Link     Abandoned
† May of 2022

Wise Anti Malware                 2.2.1                      AM+     26.12.2019   Link     Abandoned
† EOS: After 2019,
exact date unknown

WiseVector StopX                            AM+    03.06.2022    Link     Abandoned
† January of 2023

Name                                         Version                 Type     Date              Link     Reason

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Malwarebytes Free/Premium

Malwarebytes is an antimalware program which comes in two versions: Malwarebytes Premium with real-time protection as a commercial version, and Malwarebytes Free without real-time protection in the form of freeware. Malwarebytes for Windows is the last XP-compatible version. It doesn't receive program updates anymore but still gets definition updates.

Features of Malwarebytes Premium:

Malwarebytes Premium offers a very powerful protection, fighting threats that are too advanced for standard antivirus products. It cleans infections, prevents future infections, blocks malicious websites, and hides from malware. Here is a short list of features:

  • Outstanding three-layer protection (ransomeware protection is not supported in Windows XP).
  • Removes malware and spyware.
  • Real-time protection.
  • Automatically finds malware.
  • Stops exploit attacks.
  • Shields against malicious websites.
  • Exclusion list.
  • Fast scan feature.
  • Has a quarantine function
  • Automatic updates.

Malwarebytes Premium is a fully-fledged antimalware program (formerly antivirus program), which is sufficient to protect a computer against malware. Of course, other on-demand scanners can also be used, but preferably not those with a background guard, as otherwise, as always, incompatibilities can occur.

Malwarebytes Free works like an offline scanner. You can manually scan your computer, partitions, folders or files on demand. It does not offer any real-time protection.

Homepage: https://web.archive.org/web/20180516182016/https://www.malwarebytes.com/premium/

Version number:

Date of release: 08.05.2018

System requirements:

Windows 10 (32/64-bit)
Windows 8.1 (32/64-bit)
Windows 8 (32/64-bit)
Windows 7 (32/64-bit)
Windows Vista (Service Pack 1 or later, 32/64-bit)*
Windows XP (Service Pack 3 or later, 32-bit only)*
Active Internet connection

800MHz CPU or faster, with SSE2 technology
2048 MB (64-bit OS), 1024 MB (32-bit OS, except 512 MB for Windows XP)
250 MB of free hard disk space
1024x768 or higher screen resolution

Release notes: http://web.archive.org/web/20200928192157/https://support.malwarebytes.com/hc/en-us/articles/360039019013-Malwarebytes-for-Windows-3-5-1-Release-Notes

Release history: http://web.archive.org/web/20201028173600/https://support.malwarebytes.com/hc/en-us/sections/360005863113-Release-History-News 

Review: https://www.ghacks.net/2018/05/23/a-look-at-malwarebytes-3-5-1/

Tests: https://www.av-test.org/en/antivirus/home-windows/manufacturer/malwarebytes/ 

Download link: https://data-cdn.mbamupdates.com/web/mb3-setup-legacy/mb3-setup-legacywos-



Malwarebytes is not compatible with all security programs. In my case, I noticed a total incompatibility with avast! 18.8. That was the reason I didn't use the version for a long time. Since I got completely rid of avast!, cleaned my Windows XP system deeply and fixed some errors, Malwarebytes Premium is now my preferred antimalware solution, and I am satisfied with that at the moment. ssupercool2.gif

Cheers, AstroSkipper matrix.gif

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Sphinx Windows 10 Firewall Control XP

Windows 10 Firewall Control XP is a great firewall from Sphinx in the form of a special version for Windows XP. This firewall allows the user to perfectly control all incoming and outgoing network connections. There is a preset of zones and rules, but you can define custom ones according to your needs. Never again any unwanted or clandestine connections to other servers!  Windows 10 Firewall Control XP 7.5 is the last working version in Windows XP. In terms of version 7.5, there are only two versions for Windows XP: the free version Windows 10 Firewall Control XP Free and the paid version Windows 10 Firewall Control Plus XP.






Version number:

Date of creation: 06.01.2016, released in the period from 06.01.2016 to 10.01.2016

System requirements:

Windows XP (32/64-bit,SP 1,2,3) and Windows Server 2003 (32/64-bit,SP 1,2)

Version history and release notes:

French Editions released.
Events/Connections Pane and EditApplication dialog. The wizard generated rule name without Protocol and Direction prefix/suffix.
"Open File Location" in Programs/Events/Connections.
Show Path option in Programs/Events/Connections panes.
Kernel Objects overuse. Fixed.
Refresh Programs/Zones/etc after Settings/Reset.
Minor Fixes.
Network/Cloud: refreshing Programs/Zones/Settings after importing the settings to remote agent
DNS resolving related fixes.
Terrible bug in Settings/AllApplications zone preventing from normal upgrade. Fixed.
If there are rules in Settings/AllApps, please export settings/uninstall/make clean installation and then import the settings back
If you do not use Settings/AllApps or perform clean installation there is nothing to worry about.
Mode:* are persistent now
Mode:EnableUnknown - enables all unlisted application. All the current (listed) permissions are operable.
Mode:Enable/Detect Unknown - additionally detects/prompts/lists such enabled/unlisted(before) applications.
The ZoneResult "Disable+Prompt" and "Enable+Prompt" behaviors are changed. Now the prompt is shown if none of the zone's rules were triggered only, so the arbitration reaches the zone result only.
Improved events processing. Multiple (>2000) events per second are processed without significant CPU load
Improved connections listing on huge connections volume.
Network/Cloud: Agents adding timeouts on 3,10 (not unlimited) control points versions.
2008/2012 related defaults for "Apply system applications default permissions automatically" setup option
Reset Settings option.
Import settings minor fixes
AllApps blocked/allowed apps are not detected as new apps.
Network/Cloud: Import/Export to the main PC only.
Network/Cloud: Adding agent manually with empty agents list under some specific conditions problem. Fixed.
DNS resolving improvements (in-addr.arpa resolving is disabled as senseless)
"Chinese" characters in detected application paths workaround. Actually filtering malformed events from Windows core.
Brazilian version licensing.
Windows10 specific windowed Metro app (Edge) popup in background. Fixed
TaskBarButtons with desktop virtualization problem fixed.
EnableRemoteDesktop setup option problem. Fixed
Grouping blocked and allowed events for faster processing.
Uninstalling/Upgrading caused the need of reboot under certain conditions. Fixed
Free/Basic version import settings problem. Fixed
Terrible bug(crash) of the Free version fixed.
Plus/Network/Cloud: The connections pane improved. DNS resolving is omitted for principally irresolvable (not DNS compatible/local) names.
Symantec/Norton AV should not produce false positive alarm while checking the Plus (only) Edition (english version only) anymore.
Basic Edition introduced
Free i368/x64 Editions are combined into a single setup
UDP/80/443 (Google QUIC) enabling rules are added to WebBrowserZone and Web+FTPZone
Network/Cloud: Deployment bug fixed
Internet Explorer independent registration. dedicated http client (for the registration only)
Multi-monitor support.
Event notification balloon repositioning (via dragging the window to a desired position)
SetMode problem fixed.
Apps detection with detailed app name on remote (\\server\folder) paths. fixed.
Correct name patching (adding (1),(2), etc suffix) while trying to rename app to an existing name.
Network/Cloud: Agent manual installation standalone friendly setup.
German Editions: Complete manual and user interface.
Service hanging  on startup under specific circumstances. Fixed.
Allowed events automatic restoration
No notifications/prompts in Mode:EnableAll
XP problem on embedded/limited systems
ToDo: Full german GUI translation. German manual translation (english manual only at the moment).
Internal storage (lists for applications/zones/etc) optimization, eliminating redundant data processing.
Minor GUI changes
XP: malfunction on specific systems. Fixed
Due to 7.0.0 setup problem ("service can not be started" error , fixed now), 7.0.0 may be removed forcibly/rudely (using task manager for instance) . Then 7.0.1 on-the-top installation can be performed.If    you would just like to uninstall 7.0.0 please install 7.0.1 on-the-top first, otherwise the 7.0.0 uninstallation may be performed incorrectly
Events pane listing and Allowed events logging options. Network/Cloud: Agents must be reinstalled. Portable version: apps configuration will be renewed.
Events Pane / Connections Pane added with the DNS feature.
Allowed events missed after awakening. Fixed.
Timeouts for operations with programs listed on shared but not available at the moment devices. Fixed
Options to skip allowed events. Useful for applications with volume allowed traffic.
Option to switch Event Pane/Log File populating for selected application. Useful to prevent massive (potentially redundant) allowed event processing.
Option to manage Event Pane/Log File populating automatically. Helps to set apps with the proper allowed events processing automatically
Allowed events processing
Connections pane
Mistaken folder locking after Import/Export operations.
German manual and full new options translation pending. (Free versions only)
Free versions: localhost( enabling default removed. So any application even protected/monitored by AV is detected by the firewall
Network/Cloud: Ability to set individual permissions for applications and specific services by account name and by service name.
                      Ability to set individual permissions for separate HostProcess instances.
Problem after restart with applications on mounted (portable) drives that were not unmounted before the restart.
Setup option to apply default permissions for unlisted system applications automatically.
The AVG related incompatibility fixed.
Detection of specific routers for portforwading managenent. Fixed
Inability to detect/list new applications if the detection prompt is shown for other user on the same machine. Fixed
Specific DNS (IP resolving) related memory leak. Fixed
Extra Large icons added. Minor GUI fixes.
The DNS (IP resolving) may cause Windows8FirewallSerivce start delays (<=2 mins) under specific circumstances with fresh installations while svchost is not enabled/detected yet. fixed.
Memory leak in the DNS (IP resolving) feature of Windows8FirewallService.exe fixed (Network/Cloud agents < 6.2 must be reinstalled/updated)  
Resolving blocked IP addresses to host names (if possible) in Blocked Notifications (the balloon), the Blocked Events pane and blocked.log
All the binaries and setups are digitally signed
Whois lookup improved and can be customized HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\sphinx-soft\Vista-Wall\1.0\GUI\1.0 WhoisLookupURL.
(The panel restart is required to reflect the changes)
Settings/Password problem (including upgrade from the previous version) fixed (release)
Minor bugs fixed. Popup (the network detection prompt) on-the-top of Metro applications with DE version fixed. The v6 manual update.
The 6.0 testing period is over.
Special patch to allow communication between the Metro (WindowsStore) panel and locally installed firewall.
WWAHost (WindowsStore) predefined enabling zone
Path detection problem with BoxCryptor mounted before harddisks
Automatic permissions reapplying for specific portable medias not marked as portable (TrueCrypt, for instance) and mounted in the name of user account (not system)
The 32-bit specific problem of popup-ing up on the top of Metro applications
The control panel hang after awaking up under specific conditions
Problem on restoring from hibernation state under specific conditions.
Windows8: ability to detect and prompt on-the-top of metro (WindowsStore) applications
Mistaken zone upgrade on specific systems. Lan placeholder is inserted instead of a normal network adapter if the adapter is not in the connected state temporarily.
Missed detection prompt (optionally the panel hanging) while detecting elevated applications if the panel is launched non-elevated.
Bug in ZoneAdviser (might prevent from normal the detection prompt appearance)
Win7/8/2008 (excepting Vista)
The wfpdiag.etl related indirect operations are made on event basis (not on polling basis). The file reading is decreased
Incorrect applications detection caused by inconsistency in WindowsFilteringPlatform.
The applications were detected on short paths (PROGRA~2 instead Program Files (x86) or MICRO~1 instead of Microsoft)
on special occasions.
The application detection prompt and the notification balloon cause full screen DirectX (game) applications to lose the full screen mode. Fixed (excepting XP Edition)
The blocked.log repositioning problem fixed.
Multiple monitor support. The notification balloon is shown on monitor determined by HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\sphinx-soft\Vista-Wall\1.0\GUI\1.0 BalloonMonitorNo (DWORD)
The control panel restart is required to reflect the changes.
The related problems may be caused by bugs in third party tools (such as multiplemonitors by actualtools.com).
There are no problems with the pure native system multiple monitor support.
The running state of by-link running programs is reflected correctly now. The link resolving is cached. Restart required if a link is redirected to another location.
Symbolic link/Junctions problem fixed.
Auto-reverting to the default zone after registration reminder of non-registered installation. Fixed.
The rule auto naming inconsistency (BlockedEvents/RightClick vs. the x.x.x.x/y buttons of the detection prompt) has been fixed.
Free->Plus upgrade default zone fix.
Uninstaller/Upgrade problem fixed
All versions:
   multiple listing of the same application with short (8.3) and long pathnames fixed
   automatic rechecking temporarily disconnected (with connection in-progress, e.g. wireless) interfaces on startup/upgrade. (prevents from multiple (prev) LAN related zones on version upgrade and from applying Settings/LANs manually to reflect the connection state)

Windows8/7/Vista/2008 versions:
   Hijacking detection improvement. If a third party application injects a rule into the W7FC “area”, W7FC prompts and deletes the injected rule automatically. If the rules belongs to an application, W7FC offers to create the related security zone for the application in the W7FC “area”
Free/Plus/Network/Cloud for Vista/W7/W8/2008.
Hijacking detection implemented. W7FC monitors filtering rules alteration
by third party applications and prompts to reapply the hijacked application immediately.
In spite of the filtering rules are protected there are several high privileged applications
able to affect the filtering (Steam engine based games, for instance)
      (Note: XP versions do not require the feature, hijacking of XP version is not possible technically due to the system specifics)
Import/Export Agents list
Import/Export Applications permissions deployment list
"Empty paths" problem fixed. Some registry optimizers tend to delete applications paths of specific applications. That caused W7FC XP specific problems to the application detection. Now fixed.
“Whois problem” inability to open specific web links from within W7FC control panel.
Diver ordering related problem fixed. W7FC XP specific kernel driver was not removed correctly upon the uninstallation. Now fixed
- XP Agents compatibility
- Ability to deploy/monitor/update set of Programs permissions to multiple (selected) remote Agents/Computers
netevents related patch to prevent network blocking/inability to detect network activity on selected HP laptops
-the option to install 32 bit agents on 64-bit systems forcibly
-fix related to cross bitness remote agent installation
WindowsFirewall and File/Print Sharing is enabled for all the profiles (if the remote Control option is chosen in the setup)
FE80::/64  IPv6 Lick-local minor bug fixed
BlockedEvents pane: "Autoselect last" option
Free: Simplified EnableAll/DisableAll zones (previously the zones include cloud specific rules senseless for the Free version)
Plus/Network Editions:Setup options (EnableRemote etc) are separated from the main installation procedure
Network Edition: Setting the control panel launching permissions moved to the setup options
Minor manual reformatting (release)
Minor GUI fixes
Minor fixes in the subnetwork permissions distribution.
"No known problems" state
Severe bug XP (application detection) fixed
Severe bug Networks. The rules priorities
"unsupported operation" fixed
Minor GUI fixes
The option to disable the peers (other computers to control) auto discovery
The ability to create accumulating context zones rule-by-rule with ZoneResult=Disable+Prompt  (except XP Edition at the moment)
"def" application bug fixed
Network/Cloud protection. Distributed security model (read the manual for the details)
LanGame zone is included in the default package.
RemoteDesktop enabling option for the setup (enables remote server installation)
Plus/Server Editions:
Remote Controlling. Ability to set applications permissions of remote W7FC installation.
All the versions:
XML import/export settings option (excepting portable versions)
Stats panel synchronization improved
mistaken "High CPU Load" message
XP/2003 64-bit support added
uPnP apps synchronization minor problem, some routers does not support disabling for PortForwarding + PortReforwarding looping on local IP changed
Correct Icons for listing applications on shared drives
Free version allows deleting “system” (readon-only) operations
XP panel crash on specific uPnP related operations
Terrible bug of 4.1.15/16 with System meta application detection/recognition
uPnP infrastructure redeveloped from scratch. Memory footprint of the control panel decreased significantly
EditApplication from Blocked and Stat panes did not apply changes.
TrueCrypt/RamDisk based apps related problem fixed. The apps needed to be permission re-applied
Performance improved on multiple blocked event processing.
XP Edition Specific network interface detection, editing zones from Explorer RClick menu.
The panel crash on Sleep - NoLoginAwake(for scheduled background tasks - Sleep - Awake. On W7/64-bit
RamDrives (with incorrectly specified drive type identification) support
Set predefined zones for System and Svchost on initial detection. 2003/2008 Server remote installation
Server2008 (Core Installation) related fix (inability to run the control panel under specific circumstances)
screen 120DPI problem fixed
EditApplications: One-click settings restoration in Free versions
Kernel driver update XP version
Invalid network address in autogenerated rules in Blocked events (A.B.C.D/16 instead of A.B.0.0/16)
EditApplications: One-click (customizable zone settings) + creating the requesting IP specific zone on-the-fly
Disable Log Balloon setting fixed
FastUserSwitching bug fixed
Icon detection bug for unlisted applications.
XP Edition: kernel driver low pool memory conditions - fixed (to revert to a previous version the deinstallаtion required)
Default listed applications icons bug - fixed
Open panel password protection
Change Icon for listed applications option.
memory leak in portforwarding related management infrastructure
ExplorerZone (multicat enabled by default)
LanPlaceholder. Empty meta-LAN is inserted when no LAN are detected. Simplifies following Settings/LAN management
Rule-correct checker (prevents creating all-enabling all-disabling accidental rules)
The service description /dependencies added
Killing/Stopping W7FC panel/service does not remove the protection/filtering rules.
XP: app path detection bug on mirrored volumes (fixed)
Vista&W7: Applicationless notifications from WindowsFirewall are suppressed
3.9.1 (XP Edition only)
The installer bug fixed
Missing blocked notification/ application detection after “Check AV hook” – fixed
False IE detection after “Check AV hook” - fixed
Minor GUI enhancements
No known problems state (ex: XP version installer)
Rename application bug fixed
XP panel autoclose fixed
Edit application permission from Statistics and BlockedEvents panes
Mistaken system (meta) application blocking – fixed
Blocked events/Reset logic is changed
Programs,BlockedEvents and Statistics panes: new options to clear the filter itself and the filter history.
Settings: LANs and Rules. Default zone and AllApplications zone are updated accordingly.
Minor GUI fixes
Applicationless rules priority bug fixed
Option to save local application zone copy to the zone repository
Refreshing the zone list, the default zone and AllApplication zone after the zone name is changed
XP edition synchronization
Minor GUI fixes
The manual update
A set of minor GUI fixes
Applicationless rules – rules for all the applications at once. A one click solution for one-access attempt mutable randomly named co-installers producing multiple app(1), app(2) entries in the application list. Solution for one-click VPNs enabling.
The Log pane (available via a click to the notification balloon as well) allows to quickly append required permissions to existing zones basing on blocked IP/port parameters. WHOIS by the blocked IP is implemented.
“AV hook check” feature allows to determine whether the traffic is hooked by an AV for the corresponding processing. (Modern AVs hook applications on-the-fly “inside” PC (locally) before the apps reach the real network. As the result the apps interact locally with an AV related services and real network communication goes through (in the name of) AVs. In such case to disable the apps you would have to disable the AV online monitoring first, otherwise LanOnly (for instance) will enable the applications worldwide because of the AV processing)
Application and Log list Filter option helps to show only a subset of applications (by name) with the letter pattern found.
LogReset feature.
Non-W7FC blocking notifications are strictly marked as made by WindowsFirewall. (W7FC shows all the blocking notifications regardless of the origin).
Application path is added to blocked.log records.
Settings:”Run for Administrators only” option (non Server Edition) helps to manage multiuser usage environment.
Clickable image/url in About dialog + a dozen of minor GUI improvements.
Fixes: the control panel hang after system awoken by scheduled background task without login (user authorization)
Minor GUI enhancements. Release
ICMPv6 added.
The blocking notification balloon appearance time can be adjusted (HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\sphinx-soft\Vista-Wall\1.0\GUI\1.0\BalloonTime   5 seconds default, the control panel restart is required to reflect the changes)
the services mistakenly accumulated blocked notifications when the balloon is disabled (the memory "leak").fixed
Zone Adviser: When an unlisted app generates localhost activity _before_ any real network access (AF_UNIX socket type emulation), the app is advised with LANOnly zone.
Windows Security Center /Action Center integration is excluded
Columns width adjustment stored/retrieved
Minor trayicon behavior changes
RClick explorer menu to the Programs list synchronization
Localhost activity is controllable in full in Plus/Server Editions (for localhost traffic  intercepting third parties “proxies”)
TimeSync (UDP:123) rule added to the default svchost related zones.
Memory leak in the service.
"Allow in "Mode: Expensive/Insecure Connection"" column in The Programs tab
The Stat pane synchronization of Programs list and Explorer RClick menu operations
Programs list synchronization of Explorer RClick menu operations
Blocked log field separator changed for convenient parsing
The Control panel waiting-for-the-service timeout increased
Installer specific hangs fixed
Group rule management minor GUI enhancements
Redundant records in Event Log
option to disable application detection sound
rule names refreshing in the zone editor's rule list (changing rule name was not refreshed in the list, fixed)
NNTP zone default settings (missed protocol settings fixed)
manual adding programs to the list (incorrect app name detection, empty default zone set, fixed)
The security rules protection against third party hacks
Ability to block applications even the traffic is caught by online antivirus processing (redirecting all the web/mail applications to localhost first instead of real destinations)
Ability to rename programs in the ProgramsList
"Windows 7 Firewall Control Service is not running" fixed. mostly caused by AVs (e.g. Kaspersky Antivirus/KAV)
GRE protocol added Fixes:
Minor GUI problem with positioning long lists by the scroll Fixes:
RightClick Explorer menu appearance
ICMP,IGMP protocols added



Download link of Windows 10 Firewall Control Free XP (English version): 

Download link of Windows 10 Firewall Control Plus XP (English version): 

Older versions are still available here: https://www.sphinx-soft.com/Vista/order.html. In the lower right corner, you can select various older versions from their "Archive".




More screenshots on https://web.archive.org/web/20151229143305/https://www.sphinx-soft.com/Vista/order.html by clicking onto the item "Screenshots".

The paid Plus version is definitely worth its money. 1cent.gif I use it for years, and for me it is the best firewall solution for Windows XP ever. :cheerleader: Here is a link from December of 2015 where you can compare the Free versus the Plus version and get more information: https://web.archive.org/web/20151229143305/https://www.sphinx-soft.com/Vista/order.html
A key for Windows 10 Firewall Control XP Plus has to be requested by contacting the support because it is no longer offered officially. I mention this due to the circumstance that a regular key doesn't work with the XP version.

Cheers, AstroSkipper firewall.gif

Edited by AstroSkipper
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Hi, a very nice topic indeed ! What else one could expect from @AstroSkipper !

Found an antivirus programme for you, for XP.

"Protects removable disks against "autorun viruses"


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18 hours ago, D.Draker said:

Hi, a very nice topic indeed ! What else one could expect from @AstroSkipper !

Thank you very much for the kind words! :)

18 hours ago, D.Draker said:

Found an antivirus programme for you, for XP.

"Protects removable disks against "autorun viruses"


Thanks for this find! I will check it when more time is available. However, it is a very specialized program whose function should normally be covered by an antimalware program with background guard. :dubbio:

Edited by AstroSkipper
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Panda Free Antivirus

Panda Free Antivirus (recently also called Panda Dome) is a cloud-based antivirus application designed to protect the user without wasting resources. It is extremely light as all the work is done in the cloud. Panda Free Antivirus provides fast protection against the newest viruses thanks to its cloud-scanning from Panda servers. Even the most recent version of Panda Free Antivirus is still compatible with Windows XP (SP3 32 bit editions only).


  • Antivirus Protection - Real-time protection against all types of malware and spyware. Schedule periodic scans and/or scan your computer on demand.
  • USB protection - Protect your PC by preventing the automatic execution of malware from USB drives. Scan all USB drives upon insertion.
  • Panda rescue kit - Free PC recovery system. Run an advanced scan of your PC or create a rescue USB drive to boot and clean those infected computers that won’t even start.
  • Multimedia/Game mode - This mode ensures you play or watch multimedia content without disturbance from your antivirus while remaining completely secure.

Homepage: https://www.pandasecurity.com/en/homeusers/free-antivirus/

Version number: 22.02.01 update.gif

Date of release: 27.12.2023

Previous versions:

  • 22.00.01 released on 01.04.2023
  • 22.01.01 released on 15.09.2023
  • 22.02.00 released on 31.10.2023

System requirements:

Compatible with: Windows 10, Windows 8/8.1, Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP (SP3 or higher, 32 bit only).

Compatibility with Windows XP 64 bit:
As already confirmed by @WSC4 and @UCyborg, Panda Free Antivirus is unfortunately not fully compatible with Windows XP 64 bit editions. smilie-denk-17.gif The installer doesn't seem to detect the already existing .NET Framework 4 installation. A .NET Framework reinstallation via the installer also fails. If you still want to use Panda Free Antivirus under Windows XP 64 bit, you need to make some changes for the installer to work properly, which @UCyborg has found out and described here: 
Whether Panda Free Antivirus will run stably under Windows XP 64 bit is currently unclear and has to be confirmed yet. In any case, everything is without guarantee and at your own responsibility. jexplique.gif

Release notes:

  • New cloud-based disinfection engine
  • New behavioral analysis engine in the free edition
  • Improved offline protection
  • Process monitor allows seeing Internet connections on a per process basis
  • Improved performance and 50% faster scans
  • Compatibility with newer versions of Windows
  • New interface
  • Ability to manage different licenses







Download links:

Online installer: https://repository.pandasecurity.com/Panda/FREEAV/193309/PANDAFREEAV.exe

Offline installer:
http://acs.pandasoftware.com/Panda/FREEAV/193309/FREEAV.exe, credits to @AstroSkipper
http://acs.pandasoftware.com/Panda/FREEAV/Promo_pd/FREEAV.exe, credits to @VistaLover



Panda Free Antivirus is based on new cloud computing concept in which services are provided over Internet. This new antivirus scans files through Internet which makes it very light on system resources. It also doesn’t need regular updating of virus definitions as it automatically updates the virus definitions in the cloud (remote server) and scans files using those latest virus definitions. The user should have a good speed Internet connection to fully utilize this new cloud based antivirus otherwise it won’t work. No problem if the user is offline, it’ll still protect the system from virus attack as it stores the virus definitions in local cache as well. The system load of Panda Free Antivirus is very low (lower than it was for example with WiseVector StopX), and the detection rate is supposed to be very good according to my research. I used it for a while, and it is definitely an option for Windows XP. o-k.gif

Cheers, AstroSkipper smilie-pc-068.gif

Edited by AstroSkipper
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6 minutes ago, AstroSkipper said:

You're welcome! Such a thread has been a need of mine for quite some time.

Agreed, the older thread looked like dumpster fire, and I completely apologize for any inconvenience I caused. Let this be a lesson to me. :yes:

Edited by mina7601
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Hello, everyone! As I don't really use antivirus software on anything more than an experimental/testing basis (and as I realize I've made some off-topic [or not necessarily helpful/useful] posts on the other older topic about this--apologies to Dave and the other moderators), I'll probably be keeping my personal contributions to a minimum here.
I just wanted to thank you for making a new thread, with such great organization and information! I'll be happy to see what others have to say on this subject.
Another great piece of work from one of my favorite posters on here!

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11 minutes ago, cmccaff1 said:

I don't really use antivirus software on anything more than an experimental/testing basis

Same here, We both 

11 minutes ago, cmccaff1 said:

(and as I realize I've made some off-topic [or not necessarily helpful/useful] posts on the other older topic about this--apologies to Dave and the other moderators)

It's okay, I also did the same mistake on the older topic too, so you don't need to worry, but I have promised on the older topic that I won't go off-topic anymore.

11 minutes ago, cmccaff1 said:

I'll probably be keeping my personal contributions to a minimum here.

Me too.

Edited by mina7601
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1 hour ago, cmccaff1 said:

Hello, everyone! As I don't really use antivirus software on anything more than an experimental/testing basis (and as I realize I've made some off-topic [or not necessarily helpful/useful] posts on the other older topic about this--apologies to Dave and the other moderators), I'll probably be keeping my personal contributions to a minimum here.
I just wanted to thank you for making a new thread, with such great organization and information! I'll be happy to see what others have to say on this subject.
Another great piece of work from one of my favorite posters on here!

Thank you for the flowers! printemps10.gifI'll try to do my very best. :P

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