Spyware doctor

I recently purchased Spyware doctor and installed it in my desktop computer, being a Pentium 3, 500, with XP home & service pack 2. Should I have Zone alarm as well, installed? Not sure if Spyware doctor acts as a firewall.
Ed00707Asked:
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mcrosslandConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Hello Ed00707,
XP Home with SP2 has a firewall that works quite well.  Check in your control panel and make sure it is turned on and with no exceptions.  Can't get tighter than that as far as outside attempts coming in.  You still need to be careful about surfing sites and the process is initiated by you.  Personally I don't use zone alarm.  It is an irritant to me becuase it constantly asks you what you want to allow.  Just block it all with windows xp firewall.  :)

Have a good one!
Mike
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r-kCommented:
Just to conform the point - Spyware Doctor does not act as a Firewall, so you need that separately.

You can use the free firewall that is included with XP SP2 as recommended by Mike above. I like it myself.
If you have a router (such as Linksys) that connects you to the Internet, then there is very likely a firewall in that also.

In each of the above two cases you need to make sure the firewall is enabled, i.e. turned on.

ZoneAlarm has some advantages but also can be annoying.
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war1Commented:
Greetings, Ed00707 !

>> Should I have Zone alarm as well, installed?

You need a firewall besides Spyware Doctor. An advantage Zone Alarm has is that it checks traffic both incoming to your computer and outgoing from your computer.  So a program or virus is sending a message from your computer to the Internet, you will not know with Windows XP Firewall.

Zone Alarm is trying to be all things to all people.  It has antivirus as well as a firewall and thus is a resource hog.  If you have Zone Alarm before and it does not interfere with other programs, use it.  I am using version 6.1.744, and it is working fine in my computer.  A new version of ZA is available, 6.5.x, which many users have trouble installing or using.

Kerio is a better choice for a software firewall that monitors traffic both ways and uses low resources.
http://www.sunbelt-software.com/Kerio.cfm


Best wishes!
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Rich RumbleSecurity SamuraiCommented:
Turn on a firewall of your choice, get an alternate browser, begin using best practices, and try to get your money back on the spyware remover:
http://xinn.org/win_bestpractices.html
http://www.xinn.org/annoyance_spy-ware.html
http://blogs.msdn.com/aaron_margosis/archive/2006/06/02/614226.aspx
This is also how M$ is solving the spyware problem in Vista
http://www.matasano.com/log/332/matasano-interviews-ie-lead-pm-christopher-vaughan
-rich
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ale_jrbCommented:
The free version of ZA is only the firewall, and thus is less of a resource hogger than the more full versions. In my opinion, you can never have too much security - I run ZA Security Suite (which has the firewall) as well as the Windows firewall and never have any problem - I would advise getting both.

And there are lots of good any spyware programs that you do not have to pay for, such as Spybot Search and Destroy and Ad-Aware personal - both are free and work fine, so if you can get your money back on the Spyware Doctor, I would do so.

Hope this helps!
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Rich RumbleSecurity SamuraiCommented:
Two firewalls is inviting trouble, your've got two similar apps, fighting over the same packets/data. and BSOD's can and do result. ZA, free or pay, has an added feature over XP's, it's at much better at application security, controlling access the NIC, and for services. Security is a process, not a product. Your better served using best practices, and a single firewall. XP's is stateful and sufficient at keeping the bad guys out. ZA is a step up as it can control access from the PC to the outside, in additon to the oute into the pc. Two firewalls can cause overlap, while one might want to block this or that, the other must be configured exactly to be sure that the packets don't get allowed when they shouldn't.
-rich
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war1Commented:
Ed,

We have not heard from you. Did any comment help you solve your problem? Do you have any more question? If an Expert helped you, please accept his/her answer above with an excellent or good grade.

Thanks, war1
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ale_jrbCommented:
richrumble,

Of course, as with Norton, ZA can be safely fun with the Windows firewall as it is designed to be compatible. ZA and Norton may not like each other, for example, but Windows firewall and either ZA or Norton work together. It is for this reason that I can (and do) run them safely together.

And yes, please respond Ed00707.

-Ale_Jrb-
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Rich RumbleSecurity SamuraiCommented:
Still, it's possible for one firewall to pass on packets that the other is set to drop those same packets, depends on which one "see's" them first, and it's not always windows firewall. To me you should use one software firewall alone, to keep overlap (or "underlap" for that matter) from occuring, and to help keep your administration to a minimum. Most personal firewalls are equal with regurd to keeping you stealth to outsides, no firewall really outshines another at packet dropping, it's the other features that really differentiate them. ZA has it's access control of the NIC, and M$'s does hardly anything of the sort that isn't easily by-passable. ZA Pro add's the ability to allow or deny based on specific ports, while the free client from ZA offers you some default preset ports it can allow/deny. XP SP2 has the ability to allow or deny ports built-in as well.

So to me as an admin, if all I need is packet's dropped, I may stick to XP's FW, if I'd like more control over outbound access as well, I'll turn off Xp's FW and use ZA's alone.
-rich
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Ed00707Author Commented:
I wish to thank you all for your response.
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