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Internet Related/Filtering/Firewall Thread, What configurable proxy / filter to use? in Technical; Hi One school that I manage is using OpenDNS for web content filtering which is fine but the school now ...
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    What configurable proxy / filter to use?

    Hi

    One school that I manage is using OpenDNS for web content filtering which is fine but the school now wants to be able to give teachers a lower level of filtering than pupils which is an understandable request.

    So, what, if anything can I put in place? I was thinking of maybe Squid / Dansguardian running on Ubuntu, will this give us the ability to set different filtering levels for different classes of user? If not what would you recommend?

    Thanks in advance.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Number6 View Post
    Hi

    One school that I manage is using OpenDNS for web content filtering which is fine but the school now wants to be able to give teachers a lower level of filtering than pupils which is an understandable request.

    So, what, if anything can I put in place? I was thinking of maybe Squid / Dansguardian running on Ubuntu, will this give us the ability to set different filtering levels for different classes of user? If not what would you recommend?

    Thanks in advance.
    Get in touch with some of the Smoothwall Guys on here they will be able to help you out with getting a smoothwall installed at your site. Cheap and they work fantastic I run one at home :-P

  3. Thanks to danrhodes from:

    tom_newton (30th March 2010)

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    Dansguardian will allow you to differentiate between user groups, if you've got the money though I'd go for smoothwall

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    Number6's Avatar
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    Rough cost for smoothwall? 70 users, just proxy & content filter.
    Last edited by Number6; 29th March 2010 at 02:56 PM.

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    Dansguardian + squid (on a linux box)

    or the smoothwall express (different to the commercial version mentioned above) with the danguardian mod.

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    Number6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by computer_expert View Post
    Dansguardian + squid (on a linux box)

    or the smoothwall express (different to the commercial version mentioned above) with the danguardian mod.
    This is my thinking.

    Ubuntu methinks - do I need workstation or server?

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    @number6, I know one of our lot has been in touch already Hope you like what you see.

    OTOH, if you really want to go the homebrew route - it's ubuntu server LTS you want. This will stop you being lumbered with a load of guff you don't need, and the LTS designation means it gets updates for longer - the desktop editions have sensibly got very short lifecycles.

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    I'm not ruling out any particular route as yet but I have installed Dansguardian and Squid on Ubuntu server and got it working.

    However, I'm yet to be convinced as to how simple a job it will be to properly configure and maintain the system, I've yet to work out how to set up user groups so that I can configure different filtering rules for different categories of user.

    I also need to properly sort out how the system uses the blacklists, banned phrase lists, etc; most of the literature on the web seems very obtuse.

    Does anyone know of a reference to a good setup guide for Dansguardian and Squid, or alternatively would anyone who is conversant with the system let me tap their brain?

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    I am very impressed so far with SmoothWall and School Guardian. I am switching from Surf Control/Websense. They are unresponsive and very expensive. School Guardian fits my budget and the install was very easy. Check out the smoothwall products - I bet you'll be impressed as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Number6 View Post
    I'm not ruling out any particular route as yet but I have installed Dansguardian and Squid on Ubuntu server and got it working.

    However, I'm yet to be convinced as to how simple a job it will be to properly configure and maintain the system, I've yet to work out how to set up user groups so that I can configure different filtering rules for different categories of user.

    I also need to properly sort out how the system uses the blacklists, banned phrase lists, etc; most of the literature on the web seems very obtuse.

    Does anyone know of a reference to a good setup guide for Dansguardian and Squid, or alternatively would anyone who is conversant with the system let me tap their brain?
    Took me a while to get my head round how squid works. I used the reference manuals on here quite a bit: ViSolve : Squid Configuration | Squid Support - they may give you a bit more insight into all the parameters in the squid.conf.
    I'd personally think you would want to configure squid to your own needs, Its a very powerful tool once you get to grips with it. The O'Reilly book is pretty useful too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Number6 View Post
    Does anyone know of a reference to a good setup guide for Dansguardian and Squid, or alternatively would anyone who is conversant with the system let me tap their brain?
    I found this helpful, though there are minor differences and the version numbers are a little out of date. I got it working on ubuntu though so feel free to pm me if you choose to go down that route and get stuck.

    There are other how-tos on that site too - after edugeek its always a great place to check!!

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    Thanks again everyone for the helpful replies.

    I have, as of the end of last week got Ubuntu integrated with AD and I've got squid authenticating using AD. However, twice now I've tried tweaking settings and broken Squid

    When I'm next in I inrtend to reinstall Ubuntu (again) and start from scratch - I'm quietly confident but we'll see.

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    to save keep reinstalling ubuntu/squid/dg and reconfiguring them, i'd get it all working then take a HDD image with something like clonezilla to save a bit of time. Once you have the HDD image, that would be when i start messing around with configuration settings as if it breaks you can just reimage it rather than keep reinstalling everything.

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    Quote Originally Posted by computer_expert View Post
    to save keep reinstalling ubuntu/squid/dg and reconfiguring them, i'd get it all working then take a HDD image with something like clonezilla to save a bit of time. Once you have the HDD image, that would be when i start messing around with configuration settings as if it breaks you can just reimage it rather than keep reinstalling everything.
    Yes, I agree. I will do so next time.

    Trouble is I got it to a stage where it was working and just thought "I wonder what will happen if I change this permission and that directory ownership" or similar - oh dear, it breaks it! I did this twice and both times I wasn't intending to change anything major and thought " I can always change it back again"

    Next time I will get it working and then snapshot it. You reckon Clonezilla is the best option?

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    yep, i always use clonezilla as it supports a lot of storage options like storing the image on an SSH server/samba (windows) share and several other methods as well. best of all is that it's free and easy to use

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