@girlygeek am surprised you managed to get them to remove the 'Magic Box' although I am even more surprised at the fact that you still get the stupid red screen.
Thought that was all done by the version of squid installed on the 'Magic Box', if you don't have it installed on site you shouldn't technically get the red screen.
How long has it been removed from your school?
I think the two levels of protection is utter rubbish. Before we had out web filter installed staff used the 'Magic Box' as the proxy which meant we only had one layer of protection!
Removing the 'Magic Box' is probably just a case of replacing it with a router that has the same IP address configuration on the WAN and LAN. Of course, this is just the IP routing part of it - it would be sensible to combine this with filtering/proxy in one box (for example - Smoothwall, IPCop, Linux+iptables+Squid).
As HTTP traffic is routed through DurhamNET after it's left the Magic Box, it passes through their transparent cache servers (also running their squid red-page blocking functionality) so that's why you still get the block page.
I may be wrong - they may have changed the way things work since I pieced bits and peices together over the years.
Without working for DurhamNET as an engineer or getting information from them directly, we can only make educated guesses as to how things are set up, what goes where and how things work.
FWIW you do not need 2 proxies - one BECTA accredited one will do fine!
@tom_newton Is this the minimum recommended by Becta?
I wonder if DurhamNET's filtering is Becta-accredited?
Probably not because it is rubbish!
I'm currently trying to get quotes from different suppliers at the moment to see if we can get it cheaper.
I believe that at yesterdays secondary bursars meeting the general consensus was that the bills weren't going to be paid, and it was raised with the treasurers representative that the financial information should not have been divulged to Durham Net either.
I'll post back with details of prices as and when I get them.
@mounters - drop me a line if you need a quote for filtering.
@trust-no-one: AFAIK, yes!
@tom_newton, @mounters Thank you. We will too.
The proxy system in our school was set up by a previous network manager who left us with little to no documentation :( we will soon be (hopefully) moving over to SmoothWall and our main worry about filtering was the level you needed although we bypass most of the red page system with our own anyway.
We are very interested in a new internet provider though and are trying to track down when the schools in Durham moved away from North East Grid for Learning onto Durhamnet because it is my understanding that we tried to stay with them but were unable to do so.
When DurhamNet came along schools had no choice but to go with them due to their very competative pricing financially it was a no brainer for schools as costs were heavily discounted.
Now the discounts have all gone, pricing has rocketed whilst quality of service and connectivity speeds have dropped schools are understandably upset and want to look else where for connectivity.
With regards to their filtering I spoke to someone last night who is testing out DurhamNet's new filtering software which apparantley SHOCK HORROR is really good. Its based on a per school policy giving schools more flexibility when it comes to unblocking and blocking sites.
Its still in testing stages yet and that dreaded red screen has been replaced too, the new screen looks a lot better and dare I say more professional as I have seen it myself.
Cheers for the offer Tom, but I wont need to take up on it. Already got some pretty good filtering. It's from this company in Leeds I think, smooth something or other :D
Not sure if this may be relevant, but am speaking to a school in Durham who are having the same problem as you all, in terms of their leased line costs. We're in the process of helping them with a resilient bonded dsl option, that is a lot cheaper, but still provides decent throughput. If I can help you lot in anyway, feel free to PM me, and I'll get on the case.:)