This post shows students and new users the steps to disable the Windows firewall using Windows 11. Windows 11 comes with a built-in firewall called Windows Defender Firewall.

The Windows Defender Firewall, which is part of Microsoft’s security suite, is there to help protect your computer from external threats, including viruses and malware, from getting installed on your computer. Windows Defender Firewall is a great alternative to commercial firewall software and should always be enabled.

If you install commercial firewall software, Windows Defender Firewall will automatically detect it and disable it, allowing the other software to protect your computer. If you do not already have other firewall software installed, Windows Defender Firewall will automatically detect that there is no other firewall software installed and will be enabled.

In some cases, Windows Defender Firewall can block legitimate applications that you want to use from connecting to the Internet. If you are in similar situations, you can temporarily disable the Windows firewall to allow applications to work.

However, finding a way to allow a single application through the firewall is less dangerous than disabling it entirely. When you disable the Windows firewall, you leave your system vulnerable to threats and other potentially unwanted applications.

How to disable the firewall in Windows 11

Follow the steps below to learn how to disable or turn off Windows Defender Firewall.

Windows 11 has a centralized location for most of its settings. From system settings to creating new users and updating Windows, everything can be done from your System settings crystal.

To access the System Settings, you can use the Windows key + i shortcut or click Start ==> Settings as shown in the following picture:

windows 11 startup settings

Alternatively, you can use the search box on the taskbar and find Settings. Then select to open it.

The Windows settings panel should look similar to the image below. In Windows settings, click Privacy & Security, Select Windows security on the right panel of the screen shown in the image below.

windows 11 windows security

In the Windows security settings panel, click «Open Windows security«Button as highlighted below,

windows 11 windows open security 1

That will take you to the Widows Security home settings panel. From the menu items on the left, go to Network and firewall protection.

There you will see up to three network profiles.

  • Domain network: Network in the workplace that is joined to a domain. This is mostly found in business settings.
  • Private network: Network is home or work where you know you trust the devices on your network and where the devices are configured to be discovered through network discovery.
  • Public network: Network in public areas such as airports, coffee shops and others where the devices are not configured to be discovered.

You can go to each network profile above and enable or disable the Microsoft Defender firewall for each one.

Windows 11 firewall and network protection

To disable Windows Defender Firewall, select Network and firewall protection in the menu on the left, then select the Public network profile, and move the button to the Off position.

windows defender firewall shut down in windows 11

This will disable Windows Defender Firewall in Windows 11.

Instead of completely disabling or shutting down the Widows Defender Firewall to resolve issues where a particular application is not connecting to the Internet, you can enable the application to pass through the Windows Defender Firewall.

To do that, navigate to Settings > Privacy & Security > Windows security > Network and firewall protectionand click Allow an application through the firewall.

allow an application through the Windows 11 firewall

There, click on the Change settings at the top, then click Allow another app and click Browse to search and locate the application you want to add.

add another application to Windows firewall

Select the application you want to allow through the firewall and click okay. The application can now bypass the Windows Defender Firewall.

Of course, Microsoft Defender Firewall must be enabled and receiving updates on your Windows computer. The only reasons you may want to disable it is when you have other security products installed and Microsoft Defender is interfering with them.

If Microsoft Defender Firewall does not affect the performance of your PC or interfere with another installed security package, you should keep both installed and enabled.


In this tutorial we have seen how to disable Windows Defender Firewall in Windows 11. If you find any errors above or have something to add, use the comment form below.

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