The Best Software Firewall Review & Buyers Guide

The Best Software Firewall Review & Buyers Guide in 2020 rounds up in-depth reviews of the best software firewalls as part of Internet security suites available in the market today. However, because there are several software firewall solutions out there, we also help you choose and decide with an extensive guide on selecting the most suitable for you based on your available budget and needs.

Tips and tricks aside, we also lead you directly to where you can learn more, try, and buy the ideal software firewall and Internet security suite for your personal or business requirements. The Best Software Firewall Review & Buyers Guide in 2020 is your all-inclusive online destination when you are planning to buy the right software firewall solution for you.


The Best Selling Software Firewall Products

Take a quick look at our list of software firewalls integrated into Internet security suites that can fit into your budget and requirements.

Product Software Firewall Antivirus/ Antimalware Intrusion Detection/ Prevention System Sandbox Zero Trust
Comodo Internet Security
    
Read Comodo Review
McAfee Total Protection
    
Read McAfee Review
AVG Internet Security
    
Read AVG Review
Avast Premium Security
    
Read Avast Review
ZoneAlarm Pro Antivirus + Firewall
    
Read ZoneAlarm Review

1. Comodo Internet Security

No. 1 Best Choice

Comodo Internet Security suite provides protection with its layers of security applications to make your Internet browser, network, and individual devices safe from cybercriminals from the operating system level and up. Besides having an advanced antivirus and software firewall functionality, Comodo Internet Security integrates unique tools for enhanced security. With an affordable price tag for less than $20, you get a sandbox environment and a valkyrie system with this suite.

Key Features

  • Auto Sandbox Technology
  • Optional Firewall Installation
  • Secure Banking & Shopping
  • Valkyrie System
  • Defense+ or Host-based Intrusion Prevention System (HIPS)

2. McAfee Total Protection

No. 2 Best Choice

McAfee Total Protection Internet security suite shields you against malware. An award-winning solution, it performs real-time protection from all potential threats and is used by millions worldwide. The Internet security suite includes parental controls, spam filters, and the perfect ability to secure sensitive files. Equipped with a two-way software firewall system, McAfee Total Protection comes with added layers of heavy-duty protection. It keeps your browser free from unnecessary cookies and temporary Internet files.

Key Features

  • Antimalware
  • Cross-Platform, Multi-Device
  • Data Protection
  • Home Network Protection
  • Two-way Software Firewall System

3. AVG Internet Security

No. 3 Best Choice

AVG Internet Security works to protect your devices from malicious threats. Apart from basic antivirus capabilities, it also works as a software firewall and provides a layer of protection even from email threats and phishing sites. While it comes at a high price for an antivirus software compared to its competitors, being able to use it (Multi-Device version) in several devices makes it a good deal. AVG software suite works well with Mac, Windows, and Android devices.

Key Features

  • Enhanced Firewall
  • Fake Website Detection
  • Multiple Devices
  • Tech & Community Support
  • Webcam Protection

4. Avast Premium Security

No. 4 Best Choice

Avast Premium Security exceeds what other software firewalls and antivirus solutions can do. Its array of features includes ransomware shields that block cybercriminals who can hold your private information hostage. It completely scans your whole network for possible loopholes. Avast also keeps you away from phishing sites to avoid online fraud and has a virtual machine to handle unknown and potentially malicious programs. The all-inclusive Avast Security Premium works well with macOS and Windows.

Key Features

  • Core Shields
  • Ransomware Shield
  • Smart Scan
  • Virus Chest
  • Wi-Fi Inspector
  • Software Firewall

5. ZoneAlarm Pro Antivirus + Firewall

No. 5 Best Choice

Check Point’s ZoneAlarm Pro version Antivirus + Firewall offers an extra layer of security by protecting your personal information safe from cybercriminals. Combining a software firewall and an antivirus in one package, ZoneAlarm makes sure that your network is safe from various types of malware and unauthorized access. An ideal cloud-based network solution, it keeps your identity safe from hackers, providing full data protection and notifying you through fraud alerts and emails.

Key Features

  • Browser Protection
  • Intrusion Detection System
  • Two-way Firewall
  • Virtual Private Network (VPN)

What Are Software Firewalls?

Software firewalls are applications that you install on your device. Operating systems come with built-in software firewalls. There is a Linux firewall, Mac firewall, Windows firewall, and Ubuntu firewall. The latest version of Windows OS comes with Windows 10 firewall. While Android doesn’t have a native firewall, many Android firewall options are available for download. Third-party software firewalls can also be installed on other OSes as well.

Equipped with more advanced features, software firewalls provide greater granularity of control. They can filter all traffic, including encrypted ones like HTTPS. These firewalls analyze data based on content including keywords.

Outside operating systems, software firewalls come as a built-in feature among third-party applications known as Internet security suites. Apart from integrating a software firewall, these Internet security suites come with other features like antivirus or antimalware, quarantine, and safe browsing for online banking and shopping.

Why Do You Need A Software Firewall?

While operating systems like Microsoft Windows and Apple macOS come with an integrated software firewall, you’ll still need a software firewall as a component of an Internet security suite. Windows Firewall and macOS application firewall work well as a software firewall but has the same limitations as a standalone hardware firewall solution.

Installing a third-party software firewall that comes as part of an Internet security suite with a built-in antimalware feature remains crucial in spite of the effectiveness of a built-in operating system firewall as a firewall solution. Internet security suites can stop and remove viruses and other types of malware like worms, trojan horses, spyware, and adware.

Things To Consider When Buying/Choosing A Software Firewall

If you are buying a software firewall as a homeowner or a network administrator of a company’s IT department, there are pointers and features that you should take into account before arriving at a decision and spending money.

Antimalware 

Your security software must be equipped with a sophisticated scanning engine that can guard your devices against the latest malicious threats and different types of malware like rootkits, trojans, spyware, and viruses.

File Encryption

As your personal files and information are the most valuable things stored on your device, your Internet security software suite must have a feature that allows you to encrypt them. Encryption prevents unauthorized access and data theft.

Multi-device, Multi-OS 

Today, Internet security suites have variants that can support up to ten different devices, popular consumer Internet browsers, and different operating systems. Choosing the right one ensures 100% security, whether you are on a desktop or a mobile device.

Sandbox Technology

In computer security, a sandbox serves as a software testing environment where you can browse the Internet and run programs without the risk of them changing and potentially infecting the system.

Secure Online Banking & Shopping

Because online banking and shopping have become a common activity on the Internet, your security software should have a feature that protects you when doing financial transactions online. Your software firewall should be able to block fake websites.

Optional Firewall Activation

As operating systems like Windows and macOS already come with a built-in software firewall, you must have an option to activate/deactivate the third-party software firewall of your Internet security suite. Running two software firewalls may slow down your device.

Performance Optimization

Apart from not slowing down your device, your security suite must include features that allow you to keep it running smooth and snappy. Not only focusing on the entire operating system, but it also includes individual applications and your Internet browsing experience.

Aftersales Support

While these security applications are easy to use, some users might have additional concerns or are unfamiliar with running them. The companies behind these programs must have adequate aftersales support through FAQs, documentation, and technical support staff.

Reasonable Price

The last but not least, price is always a factor when it comes to choosing the right software firewall and Internet security solution. It’s important that you think about not only how much something costs but how it will fit into your budget.