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Tiny Software Personal Firewall v1.0

A great ICSA certified software firewall
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Date: 2000.07.26 10:43
Author: S. McDougall
Category: Software
Manufacturer: Tiny Software
Product/Model: Personal Firewall
List Price: $29.00

I've been using hardware routers (Internet sharing and Firewall protection) for so long that I was really thrilled when Tiny Software offered to let me try out their products. I had almost forgotten how much I preferred soft Sharing/Firewall software packages over their hardware based brothers and sisters.

Tiny Software currently sells three different products, starting with a home/small-business network router, and a very heavy duty professional version that has many advanced features (including features like a built in mail server and DNS forwarding). Both of these software packages come with a very highly praised Firewall. Tiny's 3rd product is that Firewall in a standalone version. It doesn't even seem like they ever set off to release a stand alone Firewall, and this is also what they claim. Apparently there were a great deal of requests for this.

Click to expand
I chuckled a little when I saw this. The uninstall routine doesn't say it's going to uninstall Tiny's Personal Firewall; it says it's going to uninstall the WinRoute software from which it was born. It really is the Firewall from the big package. I guess someone forgot to change the message box.

There are a lot of personal Firewall packages out on the market (including a really good free one). Why should we look at buying this one? Even after using the product, I can't give a straight answer. On one hand this Tiny's Personal Firewall is completely devoid of "extra" features that appear in other products (such as ad blocking, etc.). On the other hand, it's a slim 100% top quality Firewall with very little network overhead or impact, which can be rare. Some Firewall products can really slow down a network.

The most important thing to consider is that this Firewall is the same as the one in WinRoute, which is ICSA Certified. You won't find anything like BlackIce, ZoneAlert, or Norton Internet Security 2000 on the ICSA Certified list (but I'm sure they want to be). I'll talk more about ICSA Certification later on and give some links.

If you are in the market for a Firewall program, you will have to decide between extra features or the slim and fast Tiny's Personal Firewall that is the most secure one I've ever used. You may also decide it's best to go with a free one. Many other Firewalls do come close to the security provided by Tiny's Personal Firewall.

So who is Tiny Software? To be honest, I had never heard of them before a month ago. Here's the bio information from their website:

Founded in 1997, TINY Software has been developing sophisticated, powerful software products that have been offered to customers in small, easy-to-use packages.

As a technology leader in Firewalls for medium size networks, TINY Software has built an impressive portfolio of technical achievements within its networking industry.

With market demands to enhance and optimize Internet connections; whether by dial-up, DSL, cable modem, DirecPC or leased line, TINY Software has provided the solution in a reliable, affordable and easy-to-use software product. Branch offices, telecommuters, Small Offices/Home Offices (SOHO), medium size networks as well as large corporations utilize TINY Software products.

TINY Software distributes its products through the Internet and by more than 2,000 resellers. There are currently more than 150,000 networks in 70 countries using WinRoute, TINY Software's flagship product.

TINY Software is committed to continue its delivery of high-quality products as well as customer services. TINY Software's corporate headquarters is based in Santa Clara, California.

When I looked around for additional information on the company I became impressed fairly quickly. It seems they're leaders in their chosen industry, getting more press than most of their larger and more powerful competitors. And hey, they even mention Napster in their product description of the Firewall, so you know their cool!

Their biggest fame lately seems to be coming from being the Proxy/Firewall supplier to the U.S. Naval Aviation Systems Team, and for quickly developing a solution to a serious Microsoft Outlook Security Flaw.

Let's install the Firewall and kick it's tires....

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