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blocking all websites except one & allowing IM


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Hi all,

I'm a new member to this forum. My computer skil, I'd say is a little above average thus I need guidance from fellow members here. Moving on....

I want to restrict the internet access my employees are currently enjoying.


1. Limit their access to gmail.com only, box.net only.

2. They depend on Yahoo Messenger (YM) & MSN Messenger heavily.

3. They do need the ability to transfer file via YM & MSN.

They are connected to a broadband router. All laptops are running Windows XP.

The closest and easiest that I have read is to assign static IP to each laptop and leave the DNS part blank. Edit the HOSTS file under \windows\system32\driver\etc and fill in the corresponding IPs of gmail.com. According to this website List of IM DNS, I did nslookup on the relevant IMs and start editing the HOSTS file. Below is snippet of what I had done to the HOSTS file. mcs.msg.yahoo.com mcs.msg.yahoo.com mcs.msg.yahoo.com mcs.msg.yahoo.com mcs.msg.yahoo.com

I believe this method should achieve what I want in the most efficient way, but the darnest thing has to happen when I tried it out. YM couldn't connect at all!

I have thought of using personal firewall software such as Zonealarm which will eliminate the headache associated of allowing IM, but that will leave the gap of my employees able to access other websites.

So the question is, is my method correct?

If yes, then could someone point me to fix the YM problem?

If no, then what's the next best alternative?

Thanks in advance


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  • 2 months later...

The hosts file only is there to provide name resolution, it was made before DNS was. Once DNS came out, the hosts file is hardly ever used.

Your best bet is to probably do it on the router, what brand and model of router do you have. There are usually some sort of firewall/access settings built into most routers.

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