ZoneAlarm is a great software, but difficult to understand (litterally)!I was playing with it's settings and came to a situation with no visible solution.After Windows started a lot of alerts popped saying that a program was trying to change a registry key.I felt angry and very frustrated, but after calming down, decided to figure out the solution and found it.
Go to "Program Control" main-tab,
"Program Control" panel, and click "Custom" button.Go to "OSFirewall" tab and please enable this great feature!
There is a list of settings you can change:<ul>[*]Change Internet Explorer home page[*]Change Internet Explorer search page[*]Install ActiveX[*]Change which programs load at startup[*]Change the hosts file[/list]Each one with these options:<ul>[*]V Allow[*]X Deny[*]? Ask[*]== Use Program Setting[/list]
Explanation:"VAllow" means no matter if the program is trusted or not, it will ALWAYS ALLOW this action."X Deny" means no matter if the program is trusted or not, it will ALWAYS DENY this action."? Ask" means no matter if the program is trusted or not, it will ALWAYS ASK.
(no "Remember this setting" checkbox, it will ALWAYS ASK!)"== Use Program Setting" means that each program may be configured individually.
(this will allow alerts with the missing "Remember this setting" checkbox!)
As you can see, the source of all the alerts with no "Remember this setting" checkbox is the "? Ask" option.If you check "Change Internet Explorer home page" with "? Ask", even if IE is listed as trusted "III super" in the programs list, and you try to change the home page within IE, it will show an alert window with no "Remember this setting" checkbox, that must be allowed or denied.
But there is one last trick... the labels of the settings you can change not all mean what they say!For example:<ul>[*]"Install ActiveX" also means Write to Registry![/list]If you check this setting with "? Ask" then ZA will make you crazy, because lots (if not all) programs have their own registry keys!
Solution:<ul>[*]Check all options with "== Use Program Setting" so that each program can be configured individually.[*]Check "VAllow" or "X Deny" only if you are very sure of that! No exceptions! No questions! No alerts![*]Check "? Ask" only if you want to test your system and see what software is doing what! It is annoying if you keep it![/list]
My opinion:<ul>[*]There should be an individual setting called "Change registry keys"[*]Alert windows should have a link straight to the setting that made it appear! (something like "Configure this alert message..."[/list]Is there a way to detect which registry key is being changed? Maybe in the near future ZA could implement an Expert feature to filter this more precisely! Would be great and never seen before feature!
Operating System:Windows XP Pro
Product Name:ZoneAlarm Pro