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Review

For those of you who have been using Zone Alarm, Zone Alarm Pro offers more. 

Zone alarm was great for me until I set up the home network.  So as soon as I heard that ZAPro would allow me to use ICS and stay in Stealth mode, I bought it!  First of all ZAPro looks cooler then ZA.

Above is the control panel from both programs.  As you see it looks pretty much the same, but different colours.  The internet Lock button allows you to quickly lock all internet activity if you feel something is wrong.  The only difference between the two, is that ZAPro allows you toggle an alert if internet access is denied, ZA does not.

 

If you click the Alerts button, they still look pretty much the same.  They both offer all alerts to be logged.  But ZAPro allows more control over the log by allowing you to archive it on a set increment of time.  ZAPro also allows you to block certain alerts from being logged and it allows you to hide your local IP address in case you have to e-mail the log info to someone.  Therefore you won't have to edit the whole .txt log before you send it.

 

The Security button is where things begin to differ:

There is a version of ZA that has MailSafe which allows you to quarantine e-mail attachments, as does ZAPro.  This is obviously where you set the level of security for your network and the internet.  But, as you can see, there are a few more buttons in  ZAPro.  The "advanced" button, "configure" button and the "customize" button take you to the same window but to a different tab. (below)

 

In this window I was able to configure ZAPro to work with Internet Connection Sharing while still on the "High" security setting.  A click on the Local/Internet Zone custom settings lets you configure custom ports and protocols.  The MailSafe tab allows to either quarantine or allow certain e-mail attachments.  The LocalZone contents tab allows you to configure ZAPro to allow other computers on your network get through to the one running ZAPro.  ZA allows the same by clicking on the advanced tab in the security window.  The Restricted Zone tab allows you to block certain computers/domains/IP addresses from accessing you computer.

 

The "Programs" button is where you configure how each program uses the internet.  In ZA, you have options for local settings and Internet settings.  You could either allow/disallow connection, allow/disallow server, or make ZA ask you everytime the program tries to access the network/internet.  And last but not least, you can identify certain programs that you want to pass through the internet lock.  It is much the same in ZAPro, but a click on the "options" button, gives you a simple user interface to make these settings for you.

 

The "Ports" tab allows you to configure each individual program to either use all ports of confine them to certain ports.  The only difference here in the Programs window is this snazzy user interface and the ports tab.

 

Here are screenshots of the "Configuration Tab.  The differences here are obviously the version information and the ability to set a password.  This will allow you to keep others from reconfiguring the firewall.  I had a problem when trying to register my new version of ZAPro.  When I dialed up to the internet, a popup screen said that it had blocked access to my computer from Zone Labs registration server........I guess ZAPro is a little too good for their own good.  I have been very happy with Zone Alarm's performance over the past months, and just the fact that Zone Alarm Pro allows me to use Internet Connection Sharing while leaving the security setting on high alone is worth the $29 upgrade.

You will notice the "Yes I want to check for updates automatically" check box has been unchecked.  We believe that this feature may crash your system if left checked.  Zonelabs have been informed of this possible problem

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Copyright 27th August 2000 robbieD at Burning Issues - all rights reserved

 

 

 

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