Sandboxie is another application developed with the intent to keep your computer safe. Sandboxie works by creating a, you guessed it, sandbox for applications to run in. Specifically, it addresses the problem of: “I downloaded this file and I’m not sure I trust it. I need to run it though. How do I find out if it’s malicious or what changes it will make to my computer?” Besides running a virus scan of the file, what else can you do? Some programs aren’t malicious, they just misbehave or make changes that you don’t necessarily want.
This is where Sandboxie comes in. If you run an application Sandboxed, it will run inside of Sandboxie and show you what files and registry keys it creates or changes. This is great for installs when a lot of files are added and changed on your system quickly. With a simple context menu, you can just right-click “Run Sandboxed” on any application or you can go through the Sandboxie Control and browse to run an application Sandboxed from within there.
If an application that you run is legitimate, you can easily move the virtual changes that the application made to the actual system. Inside the Sandboxie Control, just right-click and choose to Recover to Same Folder. This will move the file or registry key from the sandbox to the actual hard drive at the location it originally tried to write to or you can choose to recover the file to a folder of your choosing.
You can have more than one sandbox with Sandboxie to keep things nice and organized. You can tell an application or window is running in a sandbox by looking at the caption of the window. It will have a pound sign (#) at the beginning and end of the title.
Sandboxie conveniently creates a shortcut on the desktop for a sandboxed web browser. The browser is probably the most vulnerable point of entry to a computer system. Malicious websites and browser add-ons can easily compromise your security. This shortcut simply tells your default browser to start up in a Sandboxie sandbox. You can also configure a sandbox to prevent programs run within it from having access to the Internet. This could be useful if you want to block an application with a problematic Call-Home function. Another convenience with Sandboxie is that it can be configured to run some programs as always Sandboxed. Whenever an instance of that process starts up, it will start in a sandbox if configured that way (and you have the registered version).
Check out Sandboxie to gain more security over applications run on your computer.