How to Allow Programs through the Windows 7 Firewall

One of the security features that Microsoft provides to keep your information private is the Windows 7 Firewall. To get the most out of the firewall, you need to tell Windows 7 to allow certain trusted programs to break through.

After all, a firewall is designed to keep your computer safe from outsiders by preventing any one or any program from entering or exiting your computer via the Internet. So, programs that you have that need to access the Internet, such as updating a bank account, are going to be stopped dead in their tracks. To keep things running smoothly, you need to tell the Firewall which programs are safe.

  1. Choose Start→Control Panel→System and Security→Allow a Program through Windows Firewall.

    Allowed Programs dialog box

  2. Select the check box(es) for the program(s) you want to allow through the firewall.

    The Allowed Programs dialog box.
    The Allowed Programs dialog box.
  3. Use the check boxes to indicate the kind of network that has to be running for the program to get through.

    For example, you don’t want the checkbook program accessing your bank account from the local coffee shop — a Public network.

  4. Click OK to accept the settings.

    If you want to remove a program from the Allowed list in future, simply return to this dialog box, click the program in the list, and then click Remove.

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