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New PC for DD - how do I prevent her going on websites I don't want her too?

(18 Posts)
LaurieFairyCake Thu 15-Oct-09 16:25:59

I have been given strict instructions from the local authority to only allow her on "approved" websites - school work websites, encyclopedia etc.

But of course no instructions how to do this hmm

Is it possible for me to put in a list of websites (there are about 12) for her to go on while restricting internet access to all others?

I have already downloaded K9 which 'barks' if you try and type 'sex' into yahoo/google but I need to go further and just let her have school websites and club penguin etc.

BadgersPaws Thu 15-Oct-09 16:29:23

What Operating System and Browser do you have?

LaurieFairyCake Thu 15-Oct-09 16:41:39

it's one of those EEE tiny netbooks which I assume has a low version of 98 on it. It has internet explorer (again it will be a mini version)

BadgersPaws Thu 15-Oct-09 16:48:22


That shouldn't be coming with Windows 98 on it, it'll come with either Windows XP or Xandros (a flavour of Linux).

If you're sure that you're using Internet Explorer then it should be Windows XP, which comes with some parental controls built in, but.

If it is XP and it is Internet Explorer then this should be a good place to start:

There are plenty of other tools out there that will also do the job, but I'd be a bit cautious about overloading a small machine and if the in built tools do the job then all's good.

LaurieFairyCake Thu 15-Oct-09 16:54:31

It must be XP - you're right, I don't recognise it at all as its so mini. I thought it was 98 because of the disk they sent with it - even though there's no CD drive hmm

BadgersPaws Thu 15-Oct-09 16:58:26

OK well give the hints on that web site a go, if what it does isn't good or flexible enough then come back and you can be pointed elsewhere.

LaurieFairyCake Thu 15-Oct-09 16:58:54

thanks smile

LaurieFairyCake Thu 15-Oct-09 17:28:04

Not bloomin IE - its Mozilla Firefox. Apparently the latest version has parental controls but I cant download it.

BrigitBigKnickers Thu 15-Oct-09 17:48:41

We use software called "Cyber patrol". Seems to be very effective. It will block unsuitable websites or if there are particular ones you don't want them to have access to or want time limits (like MSN) you can block those yourself.

We find it very useful for MSN which my DD would be on all the time if she had the chance. Also very useful to totally block net access if she has misbehaved. <evil cackle>

BadgersPaws Fri 16-Oct-09 09:55:54

I don't think that Firefox does have parental controls, it's something that they seem to not want to deal with relying on people adding plug ins to it or controls at the Operating System level.

I've heard people around here mention Net Nanny, however Parental Controls aren't a problem for me right now so I can't really comment.

WebDude Fri 16-Oct-09 16:12:39

LFC - any idea why it says you cannot download recent version of Firefox ?

As for the lack of CD drive - the netbooks are made as small and portable so both power consumption and physical space mean they avoid a built-in CD/DVD drive, but there are USB units around for those who need (and USB to IDE adaptors which allow someone with a CD/DVD from a desktop to plug that in... one of the cheapest external housings was about 15 pounds and could hold a 3.5" hard drive, or any 5.25" CD/DVD (standard width for desktop PCs).

WebDude Fri 16-Oct-09 16:17:28

Out of curiosity, why are the local authority able to "have a say" in what should be available via the internet ? If they're wanting to lay down rules, and you feel they have a legit right to that request, ask them what they suggest as ways to block "unsuitable" sites.

I can think of ways (needs some work with a text editor and is rather fiddly - messing with the system 'hosts' file) that could block out and etc (but am not convinced that there are many tools that would be (i) cheap/free, (ii) easy to use, (iii) technically unbeatable, to only allow a few sites to be usable - it's the opposite of what the internet is meant to offer, for a start!)

BadgersPaws Fri 16-Oct-09 16:31:33

NetNanny apparently allows "White Lists" to be created, a list of sites that are allowed while blocking all others.

It can certainly black list, that is block access to certain named sites.

It's £20, which I think is pretty cheap.

Someone on here must use it, it might be worth starting a new thread explicitly asking for advice on it.

WebDude Fri 16-Oct-09 18:01:26

OK, 20 quid isn't outrageous, but if the local authority want this restriction, I'm tempted to say they should get a licence to cover XX copies and then provide it free (!)

BadgersPaws Fri 16-Oct-09 20:37:44

I was just thinking that I would want some protection for a computer of a child of mine and £20 isn't that much to pay.

I didn't even think about that local authority thing, which is really rather odd.

LaurieFairyCake, what is all that about?

LaurieScaryCake Sat 17-Oct-09 15:39:28

She's fostered and they've provided the computer.

I'm really annoyed actually as I can't download or change anything (the K9 thing won't enact and I can't download any programmes).

So right now i have a mini computer that I actually have to watch her using constantly - which is no different to when I let her use mine.

I can't change/download anything.

WebDude Sun 18-Oct-09 15:13:40

Only K9 I've heard of was for checking e-mail - I guess this is some other.

If it's 'locked' so you are prevented from installing software (and let's face it, being prevented from choosing to use Opera or Firefox browser is just as much a nuisance (if one of those was what you like best, and can assist her with) as anything like K9 or NetNanny...

It might be worth starting with "Can you tell me how I can use the machine as Administrator ?" (so you don't start by raising their defences) and then when asked "Why?" you can put it to them that being unable to install software prevents you from doing what they have requested.

It also means that if they are meant to have given you administrator access but didn't, you're not appearing unduly hostile or angry (!) even if they did mess up!

MrAnchovy Sun 18-Oct-09 20:49:10

Laurie does the display on the eee look a bit like this?

If so, it is not running Windows.

It is running a locked-down version of Xandros, a Linux distribution. Basically this means you can't install anything on it that isn't already there, and you can't upgrade Firefox to the current version either.

The only plugin I know for Firefox that does parental controls is Glubble, but you might have problems without being to upgrade Firefox to v3.

The eee is not really suitable for kids IMHO, although it is a great machine for geeks - yes I do have one grin.

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