[Dshield] "Personal Firewalls" are mostly snake-oil?

Gene Bradford geneb at columbus.rr.com
Wed Jul 24 14:11:02 GMT 2002


no apology necessary.  i've had slight exposure to ZA Free and none to ZA Pro 
so i really can't comment on this aspect.  i was simply going on what you'd 
reported.  since i won't run any M$ product at home and am exclusively *nux 
based here, i haven't had the dubious pleasure/frustration of using ZL's 
products.  (this statement isn't directed specifically at ZL, btw.  it's 
directed at ANY 'doze based software.  it all tends to "dumb down" the user 
and i don't have the patience nor time for that.)  (ALL comments here are 
purely personal and not intended as a flame.  you like M$, i like *nux.  both 
are cool since they meet our respective needs.)

as for user eductation/awareness i'm not sure how any product, in light of the 
above statement, can educate nor make its users aware when they hide the 
important aspects of it's inner workings.  IN MY EXPERIENCE, most software 
publishers would like the end user to fall for the smoke and mirrors erected 
around their software and "just ignore the man behind the curtain".  this is 
especially apparent in Personal Firewalls.  the media circus of the past few 
years concerning "security" has made this field a wide open target for the 
less than honest out there.  once again, this isn't directed specifically at 
ZL...i actually believe they're trying to do a good job for that matter.  
they just aren't my "cup of tea".

On Wednesday 24 July 2002 05:15 pm, Peter Stendahl-Juvonen wrote:
> Gene, et al.
> I apology that I did not express myself clearly enough, if I raised a
> question whether ZAPro is rule free or not.
snip snip snip
> It would appear - even though we no doubt fall into two different
> categories: you as an expert and myself as an amateur - that we strive
> to focus on things that promote same basics:

no, no my friend.  i've never claimed to be an expert at internet 
security...nor will i.  as soon as that happens, i'll encounter a situation 
which makes me look like a fool and i do that just fine all on my own.  ;>)  
my experience is derived from hard earned knowledge gained from my many 
mistakes in this area.  fortunately i've had the time and the resources to 
build on this knowledge and work up an excellent firewall...FOR ME and for my 
particular circumstances.  

i will, however, freely give my opinion when it's asked for.  hell, i'm only 
human.  :>)  but we all have to constantly keep in mind that opinions in this 
case are worth exactly what's paid for them -- NOTHING.  my opinion, your 
opinion, anyone's opinion is just that.  it certainly doesn't make them 

ok, lecture over.

> Everyone of course judges from one's own perspective. I do not consider
> any of the input to this issue as wasting bandwidth. It would not leave
> scale (left) for some real waste of bandwidth if such a thing exists.
> However, I admire those blessed with the talent of pruning and an
> excellent sense of humour.
> Best,
> Peter

well i've always figured if i can't laugh at someone else then i'm the next 
best choice.  


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