Considering trying Comodo

It SEEMS like you have created the finest firewall …ever and free of charge…however…could you have made it any MORE complicated? (sarcasm) I just finished reading the 149 page PDF about the Comodo firewall…who is this firewall targeted for? I’ve worked on and with computers for 20 odd years and I must say that this has got to have the steepest learning curve of any program I have EVER seen.

Tell me WHY I should switch from this…(see image) to Comodo? I fully realize that Comodo is far superior…but sheesh…It looks to me, from the PDF that an A+ certification is needed to set Comodo up properly. I truly WANT to use Comodo…but I’m afraid…very afraid…and I DO employ full image backups. Either the PDF is VERY misleading or Comodo is way over complicated…I haven’t had a virus, trojan, rootkit etc…ever…so why should I spend 3 months learning Comodo? Am I missing something here…does the PDF make this SEEM overly complicated?

I would really like feedback on this…as I test software on a regular basis and could use the extra protection…to me it SEEMS that if I choose Comodo, I will be spending the next three months learning how to use it…properly. I don’t THINK, I’m particularly stupid…and neither do most others who know me. What am I missing here?
From the PDF i get the impression that I have two choices:

  1. trust Comodo to protect my system, while I remain ignorant of whether its working properly…or…
  2. spend 3 months learning every nuance of this firewall

I don’t like either of those choices. I applaud your teams effort on producing such a fantastic firewall, but couldn’t it be made a tad more user friendly? I DO realize that Comodo DOES beat Zonealarm (free), common sense and a very good backup system…(my current method)…but I also realize it didnt take 149 pages of PDF to explain how to use (my current system)…

If I am misinterperating things please…by all means…show me the light :slight_smile:

Hi Ghot. Welcome to the Forums.

No. We don’t expect you to read through 149 Pages off PDF - We don’t expect every user that installs the Firewall (Which is millions of them) to read all of it, We have a friendly user forum here for support when needed.

First of all, Default configuration and your pretty much there (Having Defense+ in Clean PC Mode). Several things you can do is go to Defense+\Advanced\Defense+ Settings and switch to “Safe Mode” (This creates alert for everything, But learns them at the same time). I strongly suggest to scan your PC and make sure its 100% malware free.

Now go through each of your safe applicatons on your PC, And make the appropriate settings upon alerts, example; When you get a Defense+ pop up for your browser, You make it Trusted (No more Alerts! It’s done and dusted!) and when you get a Firewall Alert, You make it a Web Browser.

Same with other applications (Email Client, Other SAFE programs, Make them Trusted in both Firewall & Defense). You can adjust the settings here:
Firewall\Advanced\Network Security Policy
Defense+\Advanced\Computer Security Policy (Where most apps should be trusted).

Also “Installation Mode” So when your installing something, And you get that Defense+ Alert “treat as installer/updater” and you will get 0 pop ups during installations, eventually it will ask you to switch back to previous mode, and you click yes.

In Network Security Policy, Yes have your browser set as Web Browser, And things like P2P out going only. The other option is to set Defense+ in Training Mode for a little while to learn your apps (No Alerts) And that’s a security risk otherwise.

Anyway… In 2009 we will have a new product that will be SO QUITE, but won’t reduce security! :slight_smile: Other improvements at the end of this year we will introduce Sandboxing (Yes, again reducing alerts). So we are working on it. :slight_smile:

Here are descriptions of Defense+ Settings:

Paranoid Mode: This is the highest security level setting and means that Defense+ will monitor and control all executable files apart from those that you have deemed safe. The firewall will not attempt to learn the behavior of any applications - even those applications on the Comodo safe list. and will only use your configuration settings to filter critical system activity. Similarly, the firewall will not automatically create ‘Allow’ rules for any executables - although you still have the option to treat an application as ‘Trusted’ at the Defense+ alert. Choosing this option will generate the most amount of Defense+ alerts and is recommended for advanced users that require complete awareness of activity on their system.

Safe Mode: While monitoring critical system activity, the firewall will automatically learn the activity of executables and applications certified as ‘Safe’ by Comodo. It will also automatically create ‘Allow’ rules these activities. For non-certified, unknown, applications, you will receive an alert whenever that application attempts to run. Should you choose, you can add that new application to the safe list by choosing ‘Treat this application as a Trusted Application’ at the alert. This will instruct the firewall not to generate an alert the next time it runs. If your machine is not new or known to be free of malware and other threats as in ‘Clean PC Mode’ then Safe Mode’ is recommended setting for most users - combining the highest levels of security with an easy-to-manage number of Defense+ alerts.

Clean PC Mode: From the time you set the slider to ‘Clean PC Mode’, Defense+ will learn the activities of the applications currently installed on the computer while all new executables introduced to the system are monitored and controlled. This patent-pending mode of operation is the recommended option on a new computer or one that the user knows to be clean of malware and other threats. From this point onwards Defense+ will alert the user whenever a new, unrecognized application is being installed. In this mode, the files in ‘My Pending Files’ are excluded from being considered as clean and are monitored and controlled.

‘Installation Mode: Installer applications and updaters may need to execute other processes in order to run effectively. These are called ‘Child Processes’. In ‘Paranoid’, Safe’ and ‘Clean PC modes’, Defense+ would raise an alert every time these child processes attempted to execute because they have no access rights. Whilst in one of these 3 modes, Comodo Firewall Pro will make it easy to install new applications that you trust by offering you the opportunity to temporarily engage ‘Installation Mode’ - which will temporarily bestow these child processes with the same access rights as the parent process - so allowing the installation to proceed without the usual alerts

Training Mode: The firewall will monitor and learn the activity of any and all executables and create automatic ‘Allow’ rules until the security level is adjusted. You will not receive any Defense+ alerts in ‘Training Mode’. If you choose the ‘Training Mode’ setting, we advise that you are 100% sure that all applications and executables installed on your computer are safe to run.

Tip: This mode can be used as the “Gaming Mode”. It is handy to use this setting temporarily when you are running an (unknown but trusted) application or Games for the first time. This will suppress all Defense+ alerts while the firewall learns the components of the application that need to run on your machine and automatically create ‘Allow’ rules for them. Afterwards, you can switch back to ‘Safe Mode’ mode).

Again, you can go through your policies and choose what to block, what to make trusted, what to make web browser (firefox, opera, ie) and out going only (utorrent, limewire, etc).

If you have any more questions don’t hesitate to ask!


hi Ghot. (:WAV)
welcome (:HUG)
everyone got their opinion. some find it too complicated, but some think it’s easy.but surely you can’t judge it by reading the PDF file ;D . it’s like reading a walkthrough without playing the game ^^
why don’t you give it a try, and if you find any problem… you have this forum ^

p.s. hmmffttt josh >:( i thought welcoming new mwmber is suppose to be my job >:( ;D

more or less thats what I’m worried about…I KNOW my comp is currently clean but with every new piece of software I test, I’m going to have to dig deep into the settings for the simple reason most of what I test will be buggy. I’ve heard nothing but great reviews of your’ firewall…but I’m worried that for the use I put my computer to, it may be more hassle than its worth. I think I’ll wait for the 2009 version and hopefully a more simplified GUI. As it is, it takes quite a while to test software and remain unbiased towards it. It also involves many primary hard drive image restores…which would defeat the "learning that Comodo does. I do appreciate your responses though and will keep an eye out for future releases…I think from the reading I did do (all 149 pages) that you have an excellent product on your hands. To be brutally honest I’ve NEVER seen a more comprehensive firewall application. I just don’t want to have instances where Comodo clashes with possibly buggy or infected software that I’m testing and steers me away from the product.

Comodo seems to be SO powerful that at least in my instance…I think it will cause more headaches than it solves.

I do however congratulate the entire team on an excellent FW with the ability to function in the simplest home environment to the most demanding corporate one.

Keep up the good work…I’m looking forward to your’ 2009 release. For now though I think I’ll stick with the simpler and less effective firewall for the sole reason that as a beta tester, I don’t need to be dealing with the deeper settings that I would necessarily have to employ.

From all the reviews and posts I’ve read (1000’s) you have a true winner on your’ hands…keep up the good work :slight_smile:

That image show a different simplified paradigm.

It took me a while to figure out that picture as it wasn’t really intuitive for me.
That paradigm require the definition of a trusted zone and maybe an internet zone (though it could be simply something like NOT [trusted zone]) while access mean Outbound and server mean Inbound.

I guess few user consider that enough but I bet that software provide a full firewall interface GUI too.

CFP firewall use a more standard approach and require Policies (rulesets).
It provides some wizard and other features (predefined policies) to make the setup more easy.

Even if I can agree that providing a simplified model could be useful for some users I really think that in this time and age most user should feel encouraged to learn more about security and related issues.

The required knowledge to configure a firewall is not something that difficult and is nothing compared to the entire knowledge that a professional has even though there are many people out there who think that is an unnecessary burden.

I guess it’s a matter of perspectives.

As there are many ways to compromise an user’s security relying on the weakness of the human factor IMHO it would be better to take a more explorative approach and learn the basics.

This will undoubtedly useful to properly operate any security software but it will also reduce the user’s chance to be the weak point of a security setup.

Hey Ghot and welcome to the forums.

If I read your post correctly, you want a means of protecting your system while you test software. If so, there may be a simpler solution, albeit one that doesn’t involve CFP.

Comodo make another product called Comodo Disk Shield. When it is run, it creates a cache file on your hard drive and all writes that would normally be written to the physical hard drive are written instead to the cache file. In essence, it virtualizes the shielded hard drive. Once shielded, you still reference the virtual drive by the original drive letter, just as you normally would.

N.B. Apps that use “raw” writes can still write to the physical disk. Shielding “raw” writes is scheduled to be introduced in BETA 3.

The latest stable beta can be downloaded from

Hope this helps,
Ewen :slight_smile:

It is possible to export the entire config and import it back after a reinstall.
IT Service Management (ITSM) | Information and FAQs from Wiki Comodo.

The default setting handles inboud and outboud conections separately and it work even with direct dialup access without routers (without trusted zone).

It is possible to setup a global policy to add a trusted zone and then manually modifiy it to allow only few inbound connections from internet.

Anyway it can basically work like in that image without any trusted zone and limit application traffic on inbound or outbound instances.

norton Ghost takes care of my primary hard drive protection…its only like 5 mins to wipe and restore primary…

the main reason Im considering comodo is lately someone is trying to break Zonealarm or disable it by "overloading it…

I dont use a router …don’t want to… Zonealarm “stealths” my ports…supposedly…my computer should be totally invisible to port scanners etc. I’ve tested it at and it passed 100% but as you can see from screenshot…at least someone can see or “did see” my comp and is now trying very hard to overload Zonealarm…he’s been at it three days straight…if Comodon was able to stealth my portscompletely and prevent what is shown in the screenshot above…I would definitely give it a try.

Below is a port test of the 1st 1056 ports…but any port on my system will show green also…

in this image…red=open port blue = closed but visible green = invisible

I need a firewall that can pass this test AND be able to stop the massive amount of attempts in the upper screenshot…can Comodo do this?

Users have commented on ways to make CFP more intuitive in several other posts…and amidst all the opinions and suggestions, the bottom line was concisely summarized by Melih:

“Our strategy to first make sure we build a product that protects people by building one of the most secure apps around and then start making it user friendly without sacrificing its security.You will see gradual improvements in the coming months.”

Comodo is already “one of the most secure apps around.” I have used it for a while now and have been impressed with its protection. While it does have a learning curve, it was well worth the time I invested to gain such powerful protection. CFP has passed every port scan, simulated intrusion, and leak test I have thrown at it. And the good news is that Comodo is working on “making it [more] user friendly without sacrificing its security” :slight_smile:

I agree gibran! Well stated. I think as Comodo’s user interface is improved, people can spend more time learning about the security functions of CFP and less time figuring out the interface.

Even as it stands now, I am sold on CFP (and most other Comodo products)…and I am certainly looking forward to future releases.
Thanks Comodo team, (V)

ok tested Comodo…safe mode

it is certainly the MOST comprehensive firewall EVER…free or other wise…it is also, as mentioned NOT intuitive.

  1. it made a desktop shortcut w/o asking…small detail but it should have asked
  2. in the stealth ports section…it seems to ALWAY defalut to the first selection…even though it invisibly remembers
    which option I selected.
  3. when set to the completely stealthed choice…it did exactly that…as tested with Shields Up at
  4. according to the help file when the stealth port is set to the second option it SHOULD allow the “next” button
    to be clicked…it didnt…this could possibly be because it was in safe mode…i don’t know
  5. to open a port for Utorrent was an excercise in frustration…it works…BUT…what I can do with ONE click in
    Zonealarm…takes two sections 5 clicks and a browse…to find the app I wished to …port forward…too much
    work…any Bittorrent or P2P program is inherently dangerous…in 1-2 seconds a computer can be infected…
    when downloading a bad torrent. It takes too long to block or unblock a program.
  6. Other than these items…it worked flawlessly…probably better than I knew it was :slight_smile:
  7. The average person who will download a free firewall…will be completely overwhelmed by the GUI.
  8. Fortunately…as stated above…Comodo…lol…knows this and protects the …firewall ignorant…GOOD thing!
  9. As Comodo is designed…at present…it is more suited to an IT tech rather than the average user.


  1. Adopt the standard GUI with main category TABS on left, and sub category TABS on top.
  2. Keep the power of the firewall but hide it from the user…or at least behind ADVANCED with warnings tabs or
  3. EVERY option of the firewall should be able to be seen on the MAIN GUI…with the more and more complex
    options…buried deeper under ADVANCED buttons.
  4. ALSO there should be (as in Zonealarm) an easily accessible pictorial representation of what programs have
    what access…at a glance. On some sites in some situations you only have a second or so to change a
    setting that one may have made incorrectly.
  5. Lastly, on a firewall this comprehensive (fantastic) the HELP file should be enormous…after 15 minutes of
    searching for what “Code 3” in the Firewall section…I just gave up…and I don’t give up easily.

Summary: You have one of the greatest firewalls I have ever seen!! It is more powerful and “aware” than
enterprise level firewalls that cost a fortune. You need to make a decision…keep the power of
the firewall and dumb down the interface for the people that usually use free firewalls…and/or
charge money for it…a large amount…and target the IT types. Do both and become the number
1 firewall on the planet…make two versions with the same inner perfection. Make a free version
with a super simple GUI, and make a Enterprise version and charge a LOT…you’ve got a winner on
your hands… :slight_smile:

Report Card:

Help file: F+
Engine: A+++
Use of system resources: A+
Speed and size A+
Ability to function in ANY environment (PC to corporate network): A++++

Final Words: Zonealarm (free) has the proper GUI…Comodo (free) has far superior abilities and much more
in depth functions.

Overall Grade: A-

Keep working on the GUI and the help file and you will take the world by storm :slight_smile:

…and for god’s sake clean up this forum…if there’s ANY “method” to it I don’t see it :slight_smile: An example of a sweet easy to use forum can be found here:

Ghot, here are some posts that echo your comments:
In the post linked above…Stealth Ports wizard problem - when I select “block all incoming connections - stealth my ports to everyone” and then click finish, a window pops up that says “your firewall has been configured accordingly”. But when I select stealth ports wizard again, the option has been set back to “define a new trusted network”. In other words, the stealth port wizard does not seem to remember my selection.
In the post linked above: Now that I have used CPF, I can say without a doubt…CPF3 is not a firewall for the masses, and it is probably too complicated for the average computer user… a more intuitive interface for the average user may allow more users to feel comfortabale with such a strong product.
In the post linked above: I think that an easy and clear UI is absolutely paramount …there is still lots of room for improvement in the UI part alone.
And finally, another quote from Milah:
we concentrated in security first! our next stage is usability.

Based on Comodo’s past performance…things will only get better!

the things about the stealth function…the firewall really does config itself to stealth…the GUI just don’t seem to know it…i tested it at and it did indeed stealth all the ports…i think the GUI was out partyin late last night :slight_smile:


I never read the big manual you talked about, but I just glanced at it and I see what you mean. However, I am sure that each firewall has a manual about that big to detail each and every feature of the firewall so Advanced/tweaker users can get the most out of said firewall. Ok, maybe not all have one that big, but this is both a good thing and bad thing. It’s good that Comodo is giving out info on every aspect of the firewall and detailing it with as much info as possible, but it is bad because it really confuses users, just like you experienced.

So, my question to you is: Would you love to see a “Quick Start” guide, where it’s just basically some screen shots and telling the user pretty much what 3xist said in the second post of this thread but with a bit more detail? Then you can get it quickly set up in say an hour and just forget about it? Then later you can read the huge manual and tweak it to your preferred security level? Also, would you want to use a product from a company that discloses every detail about a product (Comodo), or a company that just has a small guide like ZoneAlarm? Would you like to use a product that you can tweak to get the perfect security for your system (Comodo), or a product that has few options and treats everyone’s security the same? Different situations require different situations. A person that is not on the Internet much and only visits will need a different security that a person that explores everywhere on the web.


No…I want as in the screenshot at top of post…a GUI that IMMEDIATELY shows me which programs have requested access and the ability to one click change the rule. All those green checks, blue question marks, and red X’s are actually clickable rules changers…this is the main thing the Comodo GUI lacks. For example… when trying out a new peice of software…the installer sometimes tries to connect to the internet even BEFORE it looks for updates etc…and at least with Zonealarms interface I can easily click deny and “remember this” on the alert…just like in Comodo…BUT in Zonealarm I can simply double click the tray Icon right afterwards and with just mouse clicks set ALL the inbound and outbound rules…hopefully before the (let’s say) latest WMP installer has a chance to upload ALL my personal information to Microsoft :slight_smile:

I’d say that 90% of the problems people have with computer adware, spyware, popups etc happen during the install routine…BEFORE the firewalls rules can be COMPLETELY configured…even Zonealarm cant do it from the popup alert. It will do what I tell it, but it won’t know ALL i want. Like when i install any Adobe product…the installer tries to access the internet…i deny it BUT then open the firewall Program control tab and notice this…

?, ?, ?, ? or ?, chk, ?, chk or ?, X, ?, X and as you can see in the screen at the top of this topic…I give NO program unwatched outbound access…period…ever! I also never get infections…you may also notice that I dont even give generic host processes aka svchost.exe outbound access. The main point here is that at least in Zonealarm I can at least get 2 red X’s in the outbound column WAY faster than Comodos’ GUI could accomplish the same task.

The oonly true BUG I found was that according to the help.chm…when the stealth port is set to the second option it SHOULD activate (not gray out) “NEXT” button, which it DOESN’T do…so either the help file is incorrect or there is a small BUG in the code itself.

As others have mentioned that the Stealth port section always defaults to the top choice…it is ONLY a GUI bug…when you choose stealth…it DOES stealth every port…which I checked at with Shields Up online port scan…and I even double checked that by re-opening the Stealth port option on Comodo …while the Shields Up scan was “in progress” and even though it HAD defaulted back to the top choice…the ports were in fact still stealthed. So even though the GUI has a bug in that area…at least the engine itself doesn’t :slight_smile:

My only complaint with the help file is that it has too many links embedded in the various topics…so by the time you get to where you were trying to get to…you’ve forgotten why you wanted to get there :slight_smile: And, as I mentioned earlier…nowhere could I find what a CODE(3) intrusion attempt meant. I can logically assume it’s worse that than a CODE(1) or a CODE(2)…lol…but a actual description of ALL the intrusion alert logs, symbols or codes would be much more preferable.

As I also said you’ve created the KING of firewalls here…and your forum mentioned option of internet assisted install and configuration, while a so-so idea…I think will in the end prove much more “costly” to you than simply making a more complete help file and a more user friendly GUI…
…don’t let your well deserved “pride” keep you from learning a thing or two about GUI’s from the free Zonealarm :slight_smile:

I say it a 15th time …you have here the worlds BEST firewall free or not free…just fix that one BUG with the next button and fix the GUI so that rules can be created with a mouse, on the fly, and in under 2-3 seconds…sometimes thats all the time you’ve got! Especially with the outbound access rules…inbound threats are bad of course but the outbounds are the ones that ruin your life!

As the program control screenshot of Zonealarm shows…I can configure both the inbound and outbound rules with just a mouse click or two…ZA also opens to w/e tab you last visited which is also nice…in Comodo to set the same rules for a program “while” its installing…there is just no way to do it fast enough…although the firewall engine MAY in fact actually set ALL the rules through the popup alert check boxes…there is no EASY way to double check…and in this age of internet cooties on the rampage…that is a MUST HAVE feature! perosnally I "believe that Comodo does in fact set the rules appropriately…from the check boxes on the popup alerts…I want to KNOW…at a glance that it did. Digging around through 3-4 screens and 2-4 options to find out if the popup alert check boxes actually set the rule the way I want it…is definitely NOT a selling point. It doesnt mean that the firewall is NOT doing what it should…but the potential customer…MUST have an easy way to find out fast…that the firewall DID do it right, and also be able to alter the rule IF the firewall DIDN’T do it right.

I realize that MOST installers trully do only “send” out information to the software provider, that help them to improve the product…but the bad guys know this too…and I’ve quite often found that during a software install…that w/e information WAS sent out…was not ALWAYS benign…as was easy to tell when i checked my email the next day and found 27 Viagra emails after testing out the VitualGirl2 program, available on so many torrent sites lol.

Don’t forget…that I truly believe you have the most powerful firewall ever made…just make it more user freindly and DEFINITELY make the rules configuration process a much more simplistic (mouse click) affair. Add a more complete help.chm and a super fast way to visually see all your programs rules sets…and you will capture the market…without a doubt…

In fact…fix those few things and you’ll probably put every other firewall on the planet out of business :slight_smile:

…and fix this forum too lol…it trully is a mess…you have over lapping categories, non intuitive ordering of the categories etc…I mean the FAQ is buried in some topic…why?

You were 100% right to complete the function BEFORE the forum…that is obviously paramount…but if you stop at that…then you’ll only market your product very slowly by word of mouth…rather than by every…person publication, newspaper and blog…screaming to the world: Get Comodo or suffer :slight_smile:

keep up the good work you’ve got the best…just make it LOOK the best too. :smiley:

Zone Alarm cannot provide no where near the protection level as Comodo. Zone Alarm if your talking the free version is no better then Windows firewall. Zone Alarm Pro is pretty good but its still a joke. Just check out Zone Alarm is a firewall for beginners who want to feel secure but in reality are not. Comodo is secure and the best free firewall out there. A good security set up takes some time to learn.

I believe Ghot is aware of this concept. In Ghot’s first post, he admitted:

I don’t want to put words in Ghot’s mouth, but I think he is just commenting on how Zone Alarm implemented an intuitive GUI for the given task, and is suggesting that Comodo consider adapting a more intuitive GUI for similar tasks.

Agreed…but I hope comodo improves the GUI so we can spend more time learning how to use the security features in CFP and less time figuring out the interface.

There are alot of features provided in Comodo but the GUI is very well laid out. Its just knowing where to look. If you want to check out your firewall rules and programs then go to Firewall\Advanced\Network Security Policy. Spend 10 minutes clicking around and you will learn all the you need to know about the GUI. When ever I install something the first thing I do is click around and check out all the settings.

windows firewall only blocks incoming which is good but the real nasty is the outgoing which ZA DOES block as well as the incoming…

I said 20 or 30 times above that comodo is the best firewall ive ever seen…i also know exactly what I’m doing on comps and with software…I’m 52 years old and have worked on comps and software for 30 years…I only said comodo needs a better GUI…which it does…If your wife yelled at you and your’e upset plz take it to yahoo chat dont bring your pissing match here ty :slight_smile:

This topic is almost reaching the end of its purpose…

Ghot. We appreciate the Suggestion. Is there anything else?


Thank you for making my point…in 2 clicks in ZA I can access all the rulles for all the rpograms that ever asked for internet access…


Comodo is the best Firewall i have EVER seen…the GUI is just too unorganized…I spent 3 hours playin with it the other night bro…I KNOW its the best firewall…likewise I KNOW how hard it is to find the settings and more important to quickly find them…Im not dissing Comodo…just the GUI…which is what the programs authors asked for…INPUT…I test software and hardware for a living bro…relax take a vallium and carefully RE-read what I posted :slight_smile: