Microsoft Defender Firewall is part of Windows Security app which comes as default with Windows 11 installation. Firewall is enabled by default and protects all incoming and outgoing network connections in the system. Sometimes you might have changed the firewall settings and ended up with apps stopped working. If you are facing problems with firewall, here is how you can reset the firewall to default settings in Windows 11.
When to Reset Firewall Settings to Default?
In general, you can easily disable firewall to allow all network connections. However, that is not safe and will not fix your problem as all your settings will remain intact when you enable it again. Here are few reasons why you should reset the firewall in Windows:
- You have manually allowed apps to pass through firewall.
- Disabled apps from using private or public network.
- Changed firewall related policies.
If you have done any of these things but do not remember what exactly you have done, then resetting is the simple solution. However, resetting firewall will remove all your custom settings which may result in blocking the apps which you have exempted in the list. Therefore, make sure what you are doing before resetting the firewall. If you have not changed any firewall settings, then you should probably use network troubleshooter instead of resetting firewall.
1. Reset Firewall from Windows Security App
- Press “Win + I” to open Settings app, navigate to “Privacy & security” section and click “Windows Security” option.
- Click on “Open Windows Security” button.
- When you are in Windows Security app, go to “Firewall & network security” section. Scroll down to the bottom on right pane and click “Restore firewalls to default” link.
- This will open “Restore default settings” section in the Control Panel app. You will see a warning mentioning that resetting will remove configurations you have made for all network connections. Click on the “Restore defaults” button to continue.
- You will see a “Restore Defaults Confirmation” pop-up showing another warning that the action may cause some apps to stop working. Click “Yes” button to reset firewall to default in your Windows PC.
2. Use Control Panel to Reset Firewall
The next option to use the Control Panel app for resetting.
- Search and open Control Panel app.
- Change the “View by” option to “Category” to arrange the items for quick access and click “Network and Internet” link.
- On the next screen, click “Network and Sharing Center” link.
- Check “See also” section showing on left bottom corner and click “Windows Defender Firewall” link.
- Now, click the “Restore defaults” link showing on the left sidebar.
- This will open “Restore settings page” and click on “Restore defaults” button.
- Confirm your action by clicking on “Yes” button in the pop-up to reset firewall to defaults in Windows 11 PC.
3. Reset from Terminal App
It is also reset firewall settings in Windows 11 from Command Prompt or Windows PowerShell. Since Terminal is the default command line interface in Windows 11, you can use one of these apps directly from the Terminal interface.
- Right-click on Start menu icon in taskbar and select “Terminal (Admin)” option.
- The app will open either with Command Prompt or with PowerShell as per your profile setting. You can click the small dropdown arrow on the title bar and select one of the apps to toggle the interface.
- On Command Prompt, enter the following command and press enter. You will see “Ok” as a success message.
netsh advfirewall reset
- If you want to use PowerShell, type the following command and press enter. You will not see any further message and the cursor will simply return to the prompt.
(New-Object -ComObject HNetCfg.FwPolicy2).RestoreLocalFirewallDefaults()
4. Reset Microsoft Defender Firewall Policies
The final option is to reset all Microsoft Defender Firewall policies to default. As explained in method #1 above, open Windows Security app.
- When you are in Windows Security app, go to “Firewall & network protection” section.
- Scroll down to the bottom on right pane and click “Advanced settings” link.
- This will open “Windows Defender Firewall with Advanced Security” app. Right-click on the top row saying, “Windows Defender Firewall with Advanced Security on Local Computer” and select “Restore Default Policy” option. Alternatively, click “Restore Default Policy” option showing in “Actions” column of the app. If you are not seeing “Actions” section, go to “View > Customize…” menu and select “Action pane” option to enable it.
- You will see a warning pop-up and confirm our action by clicking on “Yes” button.
As mentioned, you may find some apps will stop working with internet connection after resetting the firewall. In this case, go to “Firewall & internet connection” section in Windows Security app and click the “Allow an app through firewall” link. This will open “Allowed apps” section in Control Panel app. Click on “Change settings” button and find the app from the list. Now, check the box below “Public” column to allow the app to bypass Windows firewall. If you are not finding the app in the default list, click on “Allow another app…” button and manually add your app in the list.