Forcing firewall to load before ethernet




During brief time at windows startup, it appears
my DSL connection often has no protection. I want
to control startup of software and windows components
to plug this breach.

My specs

Win XP Home edition
Norton 2005 AntiVirus & Firewall
NOTE: Windows firewall is disabled (required, I think
to use Norton)
Software fully updated
External DSL modem connected to PC via ethernet cable

When I boot up,

1. my security software loads automatically.
2. If I forgot to manually disable my ethernet
connection before I shut down the last
time, then my ethernet will also load automatically

Is this a problem?

I run very little stuff in background, and have very
few icons in my Windows task bar. There is no
predictable pattern as to how these icons appear during
windows startup.

Based on observations of those icons, it appears
that on occassion, during windows startup my ethernet
loads before my firewall and other security
software load. If so, then for that brief time
(under 1 minute) my system is potentially
vulnerable, since the ethernet connects to an external
DSL modem. Is that a problem?

Problem or not, do you know how to do the following tweak?

I would like to tweak my boot up / start up routine to force
my ethernet to either (1) wait until the Norton stuff is
all loaded or (2) wait some predefined amount of time before
loading, under the assumption that my security stuff will be
loaded before then. Anyone have any ideas or can you point
me to any resources you know contain the answer?


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