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Windows XP Firewall for the Internet Connection

Windows XP includes a Firewall (to protect your system against unwanted "visitors" from the
Internet) , which is
configured using the Properties of the modem-connection :

In the properties of the Internet Connection :
tab: Advanced.

make sure, that the checkmark is placed for
the Internet Connection Firewall.

Using Settings, you can configure the firewall.
tab : Services

The list of programs, which could run on your
By default, no access is allowed from the Internet to
your system to any of these services.

Unless you need to grant such an access,
do NOT activate any of these services.
tab: Security Logging

Allows to activate a log-file
tab : ICMP

ICMP (Internet Control Message Protocol is
part of TCP/IP, the most common use is the
PING program to test a network connection.

By default, the firewall will NOT respond to
any ICMP , incl. PING, from the Internet.

Let's test the security of your system using the XP Firewall and visit on the Internet
www.grc.com , click on the "Shields UP" twice :

Test "your Shields" :

Then , also test "your Ports : "

Good : Your system will be invisible on the Internet , not allowing
ANY access from the Internet to any information on your system !

Advanced Setup:
In case you have the Internet Information Server
(maybe including the FTP-server) installed and you
like to allow access from the Internet, then you
need to place the Check-marks (you are prompted
to confirm the system allowed to be accessed)
Activate ONLY the service, which people
need to access from the Internet.
tab: ICMP

To allow people on the Internet to test, that the
connection is working to your system, you should
allow incoming echo requests (PING-requests).

Warning: now your systems becomes also
visible for all these "bad boys and girls", which
probe all IP-addresses on the Internet and then
try to find out which system they had found, and
some of them may try to damage your system !

When testing via via www.grc.com your protection, then it will show the open ports to
allow people from the Internet to use your system as Webserver (HTTP) and FTP-server:

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