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Would like some security reassurance


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#1
charliewykes

charliewykes

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Hi,

I've just installed a netgear DG834Gt wireless adsl modem router and created a network with my desktop PC wired to the router and the laptop wirelessly configured. Both run XP Home SP2

Am I correct in that the firewall in the router should be all that I need to be secure. That being said, the laptop came with Norton Internet Security Suite and having that firewall turned on as well has caused no propblems so far. The subscription runs out soon though - is it worth keeping for the firewall or could I save money and just get some AV protection? The desktop only has the WinXP firewall. Is it worth even turning this on? :blink:

As for security of the wireless component of the network, I have authentication set as WPA-PSK with encryption as TKIP and a 20 character password. Good enough?? :help:

A minor point - the wirelessnetwork on the laptop is set to connect automatically to this network whenever its in range but it doesn't - I have to refresh the wirelss network list and usually it connects at that point although sometimes I have to choose 'connect'. No biggie but it would be kind of nice if just booting up the laptop at home got everything running. :whistling:

Thanks
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#2
Samm

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Hi there

Couple of points :

1. There is no reason why you cannot run a hardware firewall (router) AND a software firewall at the same time. Although hardware firewalls are generally better, software ones get updated more frequently (and more easily).
Do not however, have XPs own firewall enabled - firstly it sucks & secondly, it tends to cause problems with other firewall software.

2. If your router supports MAC address filtering, then enable it. (Remember to add the MAC address of the system you are configuring the router from immediately, otherwise you'll lock yourself out)

3. You MUST have AV protection. You dont however need to spend a lot (or any) money on it. I find the free ones (Antivir, Avast & AVG) are more than adequate.

4. Re. Norton. Personally, I am not a Norton fan. (Norton Ghost was pretty good but they should have stopped there & quit while they were ahead!).
Seriously though, its up to you what you use obviously but given that you already have the routers firewall, I think you would be fine using the free version of zone alarm for example, instead of Nortons.
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#3
charliewykes

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Cheers Samm

Good advice as ever from here - I think I'll not renew the Norton licence, just try some of the free AV and firewalls you suggest.
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#4
Samm

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One more quick thing I forgot to mention re. AV software....
Lately I've been using Bitdefender v9 which is absolutely excellent & highly recommended. Version 9 can be downloaded for evaluation from Bitdefenders website but after that you need to pay for it. You can however download the older version (v8) & use it for free.

They also do another version (Pro plus) which has a firewall as well as AV. I haven't tried it but if the AV one is anything to go by, then it should be pretty good.
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