Microsoft Windows 8 comes with a built in firewall which is turned on by default. This firewall has been a part of Microsoft Windows since the Windows XP days and has only improved with time. But the Windows firewall does not provide an easy way to access it, for example, from a system tray icon like many commercial firewall software do. But it can be used to block any program from accessing the internet. If you want to block a program in Windows firewall in Windows 8, then you can follow these simple steps :
In these steps, we are going to block Microsoft Internet Explorer (iexplore.exe), as an example.
- Press the key combination Windows logo key + R on your keyboard to open the Run dialog. Type wf.msc in the Run dialog and press Enter. This would open the Windows Firewall with Advanced Secruity window.
- The Windows Firewall window has a list of rules in the left side. Outbound rules are used when a program connects to the internet. Click on the Outbound Rules in the this list on the left side to select the outbound rules section.
- Click on the New Rule… on the right side of the Windows Firewall window. Alternatively, you can also select Action → New Rule from the menubar. This would open the New Outbound Rule Wizard window.
- In the wizard, select Program as the new Rule Type and click Next,
- Select This program path: option. Then you have to either manaully type the full path and file name of the program you want to block, or click on the Browse button to browse the program file. If you want, you can use environment strings like %ProgramFiles% as a shortcut to Program Files folder (C:\Program Files) in the path, but for simplicity just browse the program file. Click Next to continue.
- Select Block the connection as the Action and click Next.
- Windows Firewall uses different profiles for different types of connections. In this step, select all options (Domain, Private and Public) to make sure the program is blocked in all the profiles. Click Next to continue.
- You have to give a name to the new rule. You can type any name you like, for example, if you are blocking Internet Explorer then you can give a name Block Internet Explorer to the new rule. You can also type a description of the new rule but it is not necessary. Then click the Finish button to finalize the rule.
- That’s it. You have successfully created a new outbound rule to block a program (in this example, Internet Explorer). You can use the same instructions to block any program on your computer from connecting to the internet.