Multiple Issues with Windows Firewall

So my Windows Firewall has been playing up recently. I have no other firewalls on my PC and just use Windows Defender and Malwarebytes for antivirus.

A few months ago the firewall started requesting access for any application that wanted to connect to the internet every time I opened the application. This may just mean that my firewall is ultra-secure, but it becomes extremely irritating after a while. I also cannot turn my firewall off for more than a few seconds as it switches itself back on and I cannot create any kind of exception in the advanced settings!

If anyone has any knowledge of how to fix this, please help. Otherwise I'll have to do a firewall reset and then a windows 10 re-install which I really don't fancy doing a few months before Christmas.


Yes that was the first thing I tried. I will try again, but even after the Windows 10 anniversary update the problem still persists.
Thanks for the quick reply anyway.

EDIT: I tried it again and only two problems arise: remote assistance is blocked and so is printer and file sharing. I have enabled both but everytime I re-run the diagnostics tool it still says they are disabled.

It seems like a problem with the firewall remembering its configuration settings. Is there a way to fix this or just completely re-install the firewall? At the moment this is hindering the progress of a project and I can't even turn it off.


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft MVP
Hmm.. Try running these scans:

File scans
Right click on the Start menu icon and from the revealed list choose 'admin command prompt'. Type:
sfc /scannow
press enter and await results

In the same command prompt and after the above scan has finished type:
dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
Press enter and await results (longer this time).

If the first scan found files it could not repair but the second scan is successful, run the first scan again using the same command prompt box and this time it should repair the files found.

Ok I'll try that. I did try a scan a few days ago and found nothing, but it's worth another shot. Thanks for your continued help.

Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violations.

No, I don't believe I have. Both scans of my PC however resulted with no risks to the computer. I will try the online anti-virus.


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Microsoft MVP
Good luck!

I am part way through the scan and have had no threats detected. This doesn't feel like a virus, but more like some obscure windows 10 or compatibility issue. Any ideas?


Fantastic Member
Premium Supporter
sorry to hear you're having problems with Windows firewall. I currently have 6 machines running W10 and several other Customer computers without these types of problems. Having tried the basic Windows repair utilities kemical has suggested without success, it would certainly be helpful to have more exact information on the type of computer this is happening to you on. Here come the stand questions we need answers to please! At this point, if your problem persists, I'm going to recommend hardware testing to rule out any hardware component failures. If however, you do find some, you will need to correct them before continuing with more aggressive software repairs.


1. ) Is your computer a desktop PC or a laptop?
2.) What is the Make/Model Is it an OEM computer (Dell, Acer, HP, Lenovo, Toshiba)?
3.) What version of W10 do you have currently installed? (example: v1607 b14393.321).
4.) Did W10 come with this computer, or did you upgrade it from an earlier version of windows, such as Win7 or Win8.1?
5.) Or is it a self-built PC or a custom-built PC?
6.) If it is a self-built or custom-built PC, please provide Make/Model of Motherboard, CPU chip, GPU card/chip (Graphics), Make/Model hard drive, Make/Model network adapter, and PSU Make/Model/Wattage.

If you have an OEM computer, and do not have a self-built PC or custom-built PC and you don't have this information handy, you can download the free SPECCY diagnostic from and run it on your computer. Then upload the resulting output text file back here to this thread where we can analyze it and advise you on what might be wrong with your computer.

The more information you can gather on the specs of your system, the more people will jump in to help you.

While you are waiting for responses from us, you'll need to test your hardware and then apply those more aggressive windows software repairs I mentioned, but you need to do it in the order we suggest, without skipping any steps. You'll need to have patience as the entire process can take 2-3 days or longer if you've never tested your own computer hardware before. Here's the link to the Troubleshooting Guide I wrote:
Windows 10 - Unclickable Task Bar

Once you complete the testing of your hardware and it passes, or you find 1 or more faulty components and have replaced them and rerun the hardware diagnostics again to certify any new components you purchased and installed, you will be ready for the advanced windows software repairs. Note the link to the Software repair which is another article (the entire thing is 6-8 pages so you may wish to print it out and have in front of your computer while you are testing it). For your convenience, here's that 2nd link separately: Sound Problems

After completing all the steps in my Troubeshooting Guide, this should produce a positive result to repair your problem about 80%-90% of the time. Many folks are surprised to learn that even if they have a brand new computer that's only a couple of weeks old to a few months old, your hardware can fail at any time. When it fails this early after purchase, we call this an "infant mortality" failure; they are rare but do occur. Returning your computer to your place of purchase during the 1 year factory warranty period (or to the Manufacturer directly) can often result in a free repair. However, if you are instructed to return it to the Manufacturer by the retailer you purchased it from, it will cost you about $60 to ship it back to them including insurance. Once they repair it, they will ship it back to you on their dime!:up:

If your computer is 3 years or old or older, it's very likely that the hard drive is failing or has failed. Hard Drives today are only designed to last 3 years in Desktop PCs, and only 2 years in laptops! o_O So, if your computer is older than 3 years, it's quite likely the hard drive could be failing or failed and is causing software-like symptoms such as your firewall problems. We see that with loss of audio, video, browser freezing problems, etc. all due to hardware failure. This is why it's so important to test your hardware before proceeding to repair or even reinstall your Windows. Reinstalling Windows on a computer with a failed component such as a bad RAM Stick or Hard Drive will only be temporary and will come back if the component is not replaced.:waah: And, NO SOFTWARE ON THE PLANET CAN FIX BROKEN HARDWARE!!! :noway:

If you get stuck or have questions along the way, post back to this thread. We are here 24x7x365.

Best of luck,:encouragement:


My computer is a custom built (by Scan) 3XS system which came with Windows pre-installed. I have the very latest version of Windows 10 installed (updated to anniversary today). The specs I know:

Intel i7 6700
EVGA GTX 980ti
ASUS H170 Pro Gaming Motherboard
Freezer 11lp CPU cooler
16gb DDR4 Corsair RAM
650W PSU
2 tb WD HDD
Samsung 512gb SSD

and the SPECCY results are attached.



Fantastic Member
Premium Supporter
Thanks for getting back to us on your specs and for providing the SPECCY report! Good job there!:up: Thanks.

Having a cup of coffee while reviewing your report.:brew: A few things stand out that cause me concern.

The first thing is, that your Samsung 250GB SSD drive you have as your SSD has this problem; take a look here:
Partition 1

Partition ID Disk #0, Partition #1

Disk Letter C:

File System NTFS

Volume Serial Number 0C8D2D5F

Size 229 GB

Used Space 213 GB (93%)

Free Space 16 GB (7%)
Do you see the Free Space percentage IN RED from the snippet I copied from your SPECCY report above?? This is an absolute no-no; :ohno:Windows MUST HAVE AT LEAST 25% FREE SPACE ON THE C: BOOTDRIVE IN ALL CASES IN ORDER TO FUNCTION PROPERLY!! :ohno: Based on a cursory review of your SPECCY report, this is a major Red Flag and is a showstopper until you get it fixed.:eek: You have a lot of software and a lot of peripheral devices installed on this C: drive, including Games as well as the Steam platform; I'm guessing you have at least 200 programs installed there maybe more. You've filled up this drive, and Windows has no space to do any of it's internal housekeeping, let alone have an adequate Cache memory for things like System Restore (VSS shadow copy). :noway: Any computer running windows of any version with less than 10% Free Space, is bordering on blowing up at any time. While you are reading this, I certainly hope you have all Personal Data on this C: drive backed up to external media, as this thing could crash at any moment! :eek:

This PC appears to be built as a Gaming PC with an ASUStek Motherboard (very good quality:)); however, the shop that built it seriously undersized the size of the C: bootdrive (only 250GB SSD?? seriously?) for use in Gaming:rolleyes:. You'd be lucky if you could get 50-100 programs installed in that drive let alone how many you appear to have. We'll come back to this a bit later.

You have 2 secondary hard drives connected (shown in Blue below), and you should not be trying to troubleshoot an OS problem such as a firewall issue with other USB drives connected.

232GB Samsung SSD 850 EVO 250GB (SSD) 26 °C

1863GB Seagate ST2000DM001-1ER164 (SATA) 27 °C

465GB Inateck SCSI Disk Device (USB (SATA)) 26 °C
While you are attempted to troubleshoot and test your computer, you need to have these drives disconnected from your computer the entire time. You need to isolate the troubleshooting to the 1 single drive, your C: bootdrive!

You have a WACOM tablet peripheral connected to your PC, either through USB, firewire, or eSATA and that device is also known to produce problems with old drivers and W10. Once we fix your firewall issue, you can go to the WACOM website and download the latest drivers for W10 to get that device properly updated. For now, please leave it disconnected from your PC while troubleshooting.

You may have more problems than that; but these 3 problems need to be resolved before you can get your computer fixed; they are all very obvious to experienced Techs. The first 2 problems; #1 & #2 are really big ones; and need to be addressed before your proceed further.

Suggestions to proceed:
Fix problem #1 by removing all unneeded or unused programs via Control Panel->Programs and Features. Copy off as many of your library folder files as possible to external media such as your 2TB drive which has lots of space left. We are talking about Documents, Pictures, Music, Videos, E-mails, etc. Make as much space as you can on that C: drive. Your goal is to get it to at least 25% Free Space before proceeding further.

2.) After fixing problem #1 above, you need to disconnect BOTH of your secondary drives from your computer before attempting to test your hardware and apply the advanced software repairs I mention in my Troubleshooting link in my last post. If you backed up your library folders in #1 above to 1 or both of these drives, they will contain stuff you don't or can't afford to lose from your C: drive.

3.) Disconnect your WACOM tablet from the computer; use only a usb keyboard and mouse for the remainder of the troubleshooting process. This is not a device that is necessary to operate your computer in the most basic mode.:noway:

4.) Use the Troubleshooting guide to test your hardware, and then apply the necessary software repairs up to and including the complete reinstallation of W10. Your firewall problem should then be solved! :up:

A couple of final thoughts. Speccy shows that BOTH your secondary drives, the Seagate 2TB and the Inateck 500GB drives are experiencing READ ERROR failures.:( They are not yet serious, but did you purchase those 2 drives from the place you purchased your PC from? If they are, you should have them replaced while they are still new. If they are not, and they are drives you have from an older computer, a junk box, or whatever, they are beginning to fail and should be tested further. If the Hard Drive testing portion of the Troubleshooting guide returns error on either of those drives, and they are a few years old; they must be replaced.:waah: Either or both of those drives could also be contributing to your problem. Most people take for granted old drives that were used on their previous windows computer and assume that they were working there they should be fine on the new W10 computer! Not so! :eek: If either or both of those drives are 3 years or older, they should be tested and replaced if they fail testing. External drives are only designed to last 3 years or so.:skull: They can fail at any time after that age, from 4-6 years of age is when most of them fail.:headache:

Finally, based on how your are using that PC, you should consider replacing that too small Samsung 250GB SSD drive as your C: bootdrive, and get something substantially larger; at least 750GB if you can afford it. You can then use Macrium or Acronis to clone your current Samsung W10 image onto the new larger drive. Here's a link to help you do that:

Once you correct these 3 problems, you should have your problem fixed. :applaud: If the problem persists, you may have other issues, so post back and let us know how it goes.


Last edited:
Thanks for all your help! I've cleaned up a lot of space on my C:\ drive. (Just uninstalled a massive game which was taking up a HUGE amount of space) and had completely forgotten about my external HDD!
However the main root of the problem was something else entirely:

A VPN sevice I was using called TunnelBear had (for some reason) an incompatability with a recent Windows update which was causing it to constantly reset the Windows Firewall, which meant I couldn't turn it off, edit it etc.

I've now uninstalled TunnelBear and am about to restart my system to check everything is OK.

Thanks for everything you've done though, I've learnt a lot about troubleshooting in general and should be better equipped to fix any other problems in the future. You've both been fantastic!


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