Recently I've run into problems with downloads freezing my system, especially from Steam but also from NVIDIA. In one case, it appeared that Windows 7 Pro firewall was blocking Steam's downloader from accessing the Internet by just freezing my system every time Steam tried to download and apply a patch. Yesterday a one-hour download took me all day to acquire. Finally, Windows told me what it was up to and I found a work-around.
I've seen some prior comments on this forum that the two systems are complementary and should both be ON, but the latest was five years ago, so I'm wondering if that's still true. It appears the Windows firewall has a lot of options to control inbound, outbound, etc. What I need is detailed advice on how to set up their system to work best with yours and avoid excess interference with my daily activities.