PeerBlock is a new version (aka a "fork") of the popular Peer Guardian 2 software. It blocks "known bad" computers from accessing yours, for example governments, corporate entities, and those flagged for anti-p2p activities. Peer Block maintains the functionality of the original Peer Guardian 2 program, but includes fixes for various issues that remain unaddressed in the latest (~2 year old) version of PG2.
- Archive/Delete PeerBlock.log
- We now handle peerblock.log the same way as we handle history.db. If you
have it set to "Archive & Remove" or "Remove" history every N days,
peerblock.log will be archived (and/or deleted) the way you'd expect.
- Don't Overwrite Tracelog -
One problem we've run into a lot is the availability of the peerblock.log
tracelog file. Because previous versions overwrote this file every time
PeerBlock started we'd lose a lot of helpful data from previous runs, and
this has made troubleshooting more difficult. I'd strongly recommend setting
the "Delete history every X days" option (specifying an "X" value of not too
often, maybe a week or so, just to make sure logfiles are available when we
need them), or maybe "Archive and remove" if you want to keep them around
longer and are willing to zip/delete them every so often. In the future I'll
change the default options on new install to probably "Delete history every
7 days", but for now you'll need to do it manually.
- Installer Rewrite - Our
newest team member, XhmikosR, has rewritten nearly the entire installer code
we'd been using. It's doing things in a much more professional manner now.
It asks if you'd like to use your old PG2 settings (upon new installation
only, and even then only if PG2 is detected on your machine), makes use of
an updated Start Menu hierarchy, uninstall now also removes the ...lists
files in a better manner and removes your ...archives files/directory as
well, no longer offers to install QuickLaunch shortcuts on Win7 where
they're not really used by default. Also, we're now using a more-standard
PeerBlock icon on most pages of the Installer, in the upper-right corner -
should look a bit cleaner.
- Driver Load Bugfixes -
We've fixed a few problems in the driver loading code, of the sort that
sometimes lead to "unable to load the packet filtering driver" type errors
during PeerBlock startup. Specifically, these include fixes for the
"CreateService error 1072, 'service has been marked for deletion'", and
"StartService error 1055, 'the service database is locked'".
- Cleaner Shutdown -
PeerBlock now saves its configuration as the first step of its shutdown
code, which should help resolve the problem people have been having with
their settings appearing to not persist across a reboot. It also should
shutdown more quickly, so Windows shouldn't display the "waiting for a
program to terminate" type dialog when you reboot while PeerBlock is
- Start with Windows - Prior
to this release, PeerBlock stored its "Start with Windows" setting in the
registry under "HKCUSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionRun", in a
key called "PeerGuardian". This should now be in a key called "PeerBlock",
as it should - the installer will fix this setting if an incorrect registry
key (i.e. a "PeerGuardian" key with a value pointing towards a PeerBlock
installation) is found.
- Updated Database Code -
We've updated our database code to use sqlite version 3.6.17. Supposedly
some performance improvements (and bugfixes) are in there, so this should be
a source of generic goodness even though we may not notice much.
- Extra Tracelog Messages -
To assist in our troubleshooting of problems, additional statements are
being logged to peerblock.log in the following areas: list updating,
startup, shutdown, driver load, file-handling.
- Changed "Hide Window on Close"
Option - This option was confusingly worded in the settings panel, so
has been renamed to "Minimize to tray on close". Hopefully this will make it
more obvious that if the option is NOT set, closing the main UI window will
stop the program.
- "Log Allowed & Blocked" UI Bug
- On WinXP 32-bit, fixed the problem in which the "Log Allowed & Blocked"
listbox was way too short and had "spinner arrows" to select your option.
Just a minor issue, but it didn't look very professional.
- Mention "PeerBlock, LLC" -
Now that we have an officially registered company to represent our project
(this was needed for driver-signing, and is probably a source of goodness
even aside from that), all app copyrights and company name type fields
should be updated to use this name.
- "Portable" Version - We
seem to have quite a few users who like using PeerBlock in a "Portable"
mode. PeerBlock currently should be able to run just fine off a USB stick
(et al), but we have not previously made zip-packages available as a
download option; you'd need to install it first, then copy all the files
from the PeerBlock install directory over to your USB stick, then uninstall
PeerBlock from your machine. Starting with this Interim Release however, we
will be also releasing packages in .zip format. Just be aware that you'll
need to figure out on your own which one to download, as you'll need to run
a different version for W2K/XP versus Vista/Win7, and for 32- versus 64-bit
. . . for a total of four different options.
Internet and communication
Product page: here