Backup and restore Windows Firewall rules

There are several ways to backup and restore Windows Firewall rules, different ways for different user needs, the backup can be made via GUI (Graphical User Interface),  CLI (Command-Line Interface) and registry.

Tested operating systems:
Windows 7 x64
Windows 10 x64


GUI

1. Press ⊞ Windows key + R and type wf.msc
2. In “Windows Firewall with Advanced Security” window choose “Action” from main menu.
3. Backup by selecting “Export Policy” submenu, enter the name of the backup file and save.
4. Restore by selecting “Import Policy” submenu, select the backup file with .wfw extension and open.

Windows Firewall GUI backup
Windows Firewall GUI backup

CLI

1. Open cmd.exe (Command Prompt) as administrator and type the following commands.
2. Backup

netsh advfirewall export C:\backup.wfw

3. Restore

netsh advfirewall import C:\backup.wfw
Windows Firewall cmd backup and restore commands
Windows Firewall cmd backup and restore commands

Registry

Backup
1. Press ⊞ Windows key + R and type regedit
2. In “Registry Editor” window navigate to key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\SharedAccess\Parameters\FirewallPolicy\FirewallRules\, right click on “FirewallRules” key and select “Export”,  enter the backup file name and save, the backup file will be saved with the .reg extension for example backup.reg.

Windows Firewall backup with registry editor
Windows Firewall backup with registry editor

Restore
1. Press ⊞ Windows key + R and type regedit
2. In “Registry Editor” window navigate to key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\SharedAccess\Parameters\FirewallPolicy\FirewallRules\, select and delete all string values.

Windows Firewall delete string values from registry
Windows Firewall delete string values from registry

3. Open the backup.reg file and add the values to the registry.

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