How can I make Windows firewall (Windows 7 or 2008R2) use port numbers for all ports instead of unhelpfully give you "PlayTo Discovery" or similar as the local port? In other words, no name resolution for the ports (nor the hosts, preferably).

An example of a problem is that I have something listening to port 8009, but this port number is not listed in any of the inbound rules, making it much harder to find what rule is allowing this port.


That's not how Windows Firewall works out of the box.

Windows Firewall can be set up in such a way that it simply blocks or allows traffic on specific port numbers that you specify, but those predefined rules that you see, such as "Play To SSDP Discovery"... that is not a simple "name resolution" issue as you mention in your question. Windows Firewall uses those predefined rules to allow or disallow traffic generated by specific processes or applications, regardless of port number or protocol.

If you want to discard all of this built in functionality and go back to only caring about port numbers, then you are free to wipe out all of the built-in Windows Firewall rules and create your own based on port numbers. In that case, you can name the rules whatever you want. Name the rule "Port 3389" if you want. In addition to that, if you then set the rule up properly, the local and remote ports for that rule will display as expected in the list.


This doesn't answer your question but would be a workaround. try "netstat -bon". should give you the process running and what port it is listening on.

  • No, that only tells you what ports are currently listening - not which ones are allowed in by the FW. – Jim Balo Jul 27 '13 at 1:06
  • Bump! Anyone? Or can it not be done? – Jim Balo Jul 27 '13 at 15:31
  • if you rename the services file in c:\windows\sytem32\drivers\etc does that prevent it from showing the service names? (Might have to reboot and I am unsure of what that will do to any other apps). I suspect this isn't an option. It's possible there is no "port #" specifically for some services. An example of this might be ICMP (ping). I think the answer is, you can't.... but there might be some odd work around if you can find the lookup list.. – MikeAWood Aug 2 '13 at 19:52

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