Re: get school connected to the inet
On Sun, Apr 22, 2001 at 11:14:21PM +0200, Joachim Schiele wrote:
> yes tnx for this advice but, i should have said it, i don't have the
> computer-power for running a squid :P we have a 486 with about 32mb or
> 16mb ram and 200mb harddrive
a 486 with 32MB is adequate for running squid for an entire school. i
used to build school firewall/gateway boxes on 486 boxes a few years
ago. it wont be fast, and you'd be much better off with a newer faster
bigger machine but it WILL do the job.
200MB hard disk isn't really adequate, though.
it should be fairly easy to scavenge up a bigger hard disk and some
more RAM - maybe one of the parents has some old "junk" like a 2GB
drive and 64MB of 72pin RAM gathering dust in a cupboard. or ask at a
local computer shop if they have any old trade-in junk that they'd like
to donate. nobody wants this old hardware anymore, it's hardly worth
> isn't there a program or a filter for this?
in short, no.
i've done a lot of work related to this issues over the years, including
a few years as sysadmin at an ISP dedicated to providing access to
the simple fact is that it can't be done. period.
of course, companies that sell censorware software will try to tell
you otherwise (with fine-print disclaimers) - but they're all full of
bullshit. they're trying to sell their product, not give honest and
there is no way at all of blocking all "undesirable" sites, and any
attempt to do so will inevitably block many perfectly acceptable sites.
in other words:
1. it is NOT possible to block all undesirable sites
2. you WILL block perfectly legitimate sites - "collateral damage"
e.g. a simple block of the word "sex" will block all sites referring to
the English counties "Sussex" and "Essex" and so on - which would be
extremely annoying for a student doing a research project on history or
geography of England.
it would also block sex-education sites and information about safe sex
and many other legitimate health/medical sites.
there are many other words which contain the letters "s", "e", and "x"
which would also be blocked.
similarly, if you try to block drug-related sites, then you not only
block sites with "bad" information from drug users, you will also block
sites about harm minimisation, health risks associated with drugs, and
so on...throwing out the good with the "bad"
BTW, not all drug-user's sites are "bad" - many of them contain useful
safety advice and personal anecdotes about the benefits and dangers of
drug use...Just Say "KNOW".
the correct solution to the problem is teaching the kids to be
responsible, making sure they understand what the rules are for their
internet access, and monitoring them to make sure they're not getting up
this might mean setting up squid to use proxy authentication, and then
study the logs every night....and question any students who look like
they might be mis-using the internet. the trouble with this is that kids
will share (and steal!) each other's passwords and try to get each other
a better idea is to have a teacher monitor what's happening with the
internet terminals while they're in use.
craig sanders <firstname.lastname@example.org>
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