What is McAfee Firewall

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About McAfee Firewall

McAfee Firewall is a network security system that scans data coming and going out from your PC via the internet to prevent malicious programs or attackers from gaining access to your network. This firewall offers advanced protection for your computer by creating a barrier between your computer and the internet to monitor internet traffic for malicious activities.

In this article, we will describe the McAfee Firewall features, provide you with a guide on how to use it, and discuss the pros and cons of using this software to safeguard your computer.

Minimum PC Requirements

Below, you can find the requirements for PC, Mac, and Linux.

Windows Operating System:

  • Windows 8
  • Windows1
  • Windows10 (32-bit and 64-bit)

Mac Operating System:

  • Mac OS (10.15 Catalina, 10.14 Mojave, 10.13 High Sierra, 10.12 Sierra)
  • Mac OS X 10.11
  • Mac OS X 10.10


  • Ubuntu (18.10, 18.04, 16.04, 14.04)


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  • Pentium compatible processors with SSE2 support
  • Apple computers with Intel processor or Atom processor

System Memory:

  • 2 GB RAM

Free Storage:

  • 500 MB available

Internet connection:

  • High-speed internet connection recommended

Web browsers (for phishing protection):

Microsoft Internet Explorer 9

  • Mozilla Firefox
  • Google Chrome
  • Apple Safari

McAfee Firewall Features

McAfee Firewall Advanced Protection:

In addition to filtering data, the McAfee firewall also provides a complete inbound and outbound firewall protection. It protects your computer from hacker probes, blocks spyware, Trojans, and keyloggers.

The firewall monitors internet and network traffic, alerts users to hostile activities, and provides detailed information about internet traffic.

Smart Internet Access Control for Programs:

You can use the Firewall’s alerts and event logs to control how your programs access the internet and manage internet access for applications through alerts and event logs. You can also limit internet access for specific programs on the firewall’s Program Permissions tab.

Control Your Computer Connections and Lockdown Firewall:

Instantly sever all connections and limit internet traffic between your computer and the internet. With McAfee Firewall, you can trust and ban remote connections and IP addresses that could connect to your PC.

Advanced Malware Detection:

Combines program access control with an enhanced malware database to detect and block potentially unwanted programs and malicious applications— including spyware, Trojans— from accessing the internet.

Computer Startup Protection:

The firewall protects your computer during startup. Boot time protection blocks new programs — without prior permissions — from requesting access to the internet. Upon launching, McAfee Firewall displays alerts for applications that had required access to the internet during startup, which you can grant or deny.

Monitor and Analyze Internet Traffic:

View legible graphs showing the origins of hostile intrusions and attacks. Furthermore, gain access to detailed owner information and geographical data for originating IP addresses. Track program bandwidth and activity, including those that are actively listening for open connections.

Pause Intrusion Alerts When You Are Busy:

You can pause intrusion and suspicious events when you are focused on other essential activities like video conferences, gaming, watching movies, and so on. Set the firewall to display these alerts when you complete the computer game.

Protect your privacy by enabling automatic intrusion prevention. In comparison to other security systems, McAfee provides a higher level of protection by blocking processes that display characteristics of hacking attempts.

Is McAfee Firewall Free?

Unfortunately, the latest version of the McAfee Firewall is not free for download. The firewall is included in a McAfee Total Protection software package. McAfee offers a 1-year license covering unlimited devices for USD 44.99 for the first year. Afterward, you will have to pay up to USD 119.99 per year.

McAfee Firewall Pros and Cons

McAfee has taken several measures to improve protection for computers and networks. However, to complete our McAfee Firewall review, we will list some upsides and drawbacks of this software program.


  • Enhanced traffic-filtering performance and proactive protection in real-time
  • Inbound and outbound firewalls for preventing and blocking the flow of unwanted traffic packets
  • A user-friendly and intuitive interface
  • Support for this software is available through technical documentation, video tutorials, forums, FAQs, and direct communications with the McAfee team
  • It is very good at detecting malicious URLs


  • The Settings controls are scattered across different tabs on the software’s interface, making it challenging to locate specific controls
  • In contrast to other alternatives, McAfee Firewall is considerably expensive for the average PC user
  • Average malware removal capability from already infected computers
  • McAfee takes up a lot of memory, which can limit your ability to use your PC when its default firewall is running. The real-time protection it offers will slow down all other processes on your PC.

How to Use McAfee Firewall

To enable McAfee Firewall, follow these steps:

  1. Launch the McAfee program.
  2. Click PC Security (or Mac Security) or click the gear icon at the top-right corner.
  3. Click on Firewall.
  4. Click Turn On.

To disable the Firewall, here’s what you should do:

  1. Open the McAfee software.
  2. Click PC Security (or Mac Security), or click the gear icon at the top-right corner.
  3. Click on Firewall.
  4. Click Turn Off.

Note: You can set the firewall to resume protection automatically after a preset time. Choose this time from the When do you want to resume Firewall drop-down list.

Setting Firewall’s Security Level:

The Firewall provides five security levels, which include the following:

  1. Trusting: Grants all inbound and outbound internet connections and automatically adds them to the Program Permissions pane.
  2. Standard: Alerts you when unknown or new programs require internet access.
  3. Tight: Alerts require your response to every inbound and outbound internet connection request.
  4. Stealth: Blocks only inbound internet connections.
  5. Lockdown: Blocks both inbound and outbound internet traffic.

Here is a guide showing how you can set the firewall’s security level:

  1. Open your McAfee software, and then open Security Center.
  2. In the McAfee Security Center window, click on Internet & Network, then click the Configure
  3. In the Internet & Network Configuration tab, under the Firewall protection section, click the Advanced
  4. In the Security Level tab, move the slider to your desired security level.
  5. Click the OK button.


If you feel your computer’s performance is weaker than usual, then you may want to get Auslogics BoostSpeed. With this program, you can run top-level optimizations, carry out repairs, and execute other performance-enhancing operations.

In the end, your computer will return to its optimal performance levels, and it will be ready to perform tasks faster than before.

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