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I can't seem to switch on my Windows Firewall no matter what!

List of things that I have tried and hasn't worked for me->

Disabled Avast Antivirus(free) and tried switching on Went to services.msc> Windows Firewall> Start firewall Scanned my computer with Malware bytes and Avast full scan and didn't find any virus/malwares. Went to various Microsoft support threads and downloaded the Fix it tools like this one for example: Microsoft Fixit tools

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Are you the Admin for the system? Does it do this with all profiles or can you create a new one and have it work? –  Aaron Dec 29 '13 at 17:11
    
@Piyush Do you see any red exclamation points in the event log of Windows (eventvwr.msc)? These could give you some more information as to why the service won't turn on. –  Rik Dec 29 '13 at 17:50
    
Yes Aaron I am the admin of the system. @Rik : Yes there is a red exclamation in the event log. This is the log "The Windows Firewall service terminated with service-specific error The data is invalid.." As you can see the log is unhelpful. –  Piyush Dec 30 '13 at 9:30

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

From the comments:

Yes there is a red exclamation in the event log. This is the log "The Windows Firewall service terminated with service-specific error The data is invalid.." As you can see the log is unhelpful.

Actually, the event log is very helpful. It tells us your firewall data became corrupted.

From here and here.

You didn't specify the exact EventID but you could try resetting the firewall with the following:

  • Open a administrator prompt.
    (Click Start, type cmd, right-click cmd.exe and choose Run as administrator.)

  • Copy and paste the following command (and press Enter):

Rundll32 setupapi,InstallHinfSection Ndi-Steelhead 132 %windir%\inf\netrass.inf

  • Run the following command:
    netsh advfirewall reset

  • See if you can start the service (or if it is already started).

If that doesn't work there is also the option (found in that second link) of running the "services repair tool by ESET" from here.

If both methods don't work please provide the exact EventId and text (like in this topic) so we can search more precise for a solution.

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Thank you. Thank you so much. The Eset services repair tool did it for me. Thanks a ton. For the curious ones out there, the first step ( the one involving the cmd) threw this error "An error occured while trying to contact your Windows Firewall services.Make sure that your service is running and try again" –  Piyush Dec 30 '13 at 20:04

The only thing that would prevent windows firewall would be another instance of a firewall, from your already-installed anti-virus suite or similar.

You should try turning off the Avast firewall.

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Does Avast Antivirus(free) come with a firewall? I don't think the free edition comes with a firewall. –  Rik Dec 29 '13 at 17:49
    
Avast Antivirus ( free) does not come with a firewall. I don't have any other firewalls running on the system. –  Piyush Dec 30 '13 at 9:32

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