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Websites not restricted? RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I've installed SteadyState v 2.5 on my laptop running XP Home, Service Pack 3. I've set up a new user and all features work according to my expectations with the exception of web site blocking:
    Under 'Feature Restrictions' I have checked 'Prevent Internet access (except Web sites below), and have entered a couple of known web sites into the 'Web Addresses Allowed' box for testing purposes. I have also entered a website into the 'Home Page' box. I have followed the convention for specifying the web sites.
    When I test the profile/user that I created, the browser (Internet Explorer 6.0) opens to the specified Home Page but still allows access to any web site, not just those listed as allowed.
    Can someone help with this issue?
    Thursday, December 10, 2009 6:36 AM

All replies

  • Please understand that Windows SteadyState is designed for environment without proxy server. From your description, it seems your network already has a proxy server configured. The proxy server filters some websites. However, the Internet is still accessible without the proxy server, thus the proxy server filter can be bypassed.

    Please understand that as the “Prevent Internet access (except Web Sites below)” option uses non-exists server to block Internet access. It will not work under your environment.  If this option is used under environment without proxy server, it will block the Internet accesses except for those allowed sites which have been added to the proxy server’s “Exceptions” list.


    Sean Zhu - MSFT
    Friday, December 11, 2009 7:29 AM
  • Please understand that Windows SteadyState is designed for environment without proxy server. From your description, it seems your network already has a proxy server configured. The proxy server filters some websites. However, the Internet is still accessible without the proxy server, thus the proxy server filter can be bypassed.

    Please understand that as the “Prevent Internet access (except Web Sites below)” option uses non-exists server to block Internet access. It will not work under your environment.  If this option is used under environment without proxy server, it will block the Internet accesses except for those allowed sites which have been added to the proxy server’s “Exceptions” list.


    Sean Zhu - MSFT
    Hi Sean, thanks for your help with this.

    My laptop is not part of a network and connects directly via HSDPA (UMTS) dial up to my South African service provider. There is no proxy server involved (unless my connection is to a proxy server run by my ISP).

    Please advise, thank you
    Saturday, December 12, 2009 6:58 PM
  • Thank you for the update. I'd like to inform you that when you select the “Prevent Internet access (except Web Sites below)” option, the system will set the proxy server in IE to a non-exist one (NoInternetAccess) and add websites allowed to the “Exceptions”. The “Use the same proxy server for all protocols” option is checked. Thus, all website accesses except for those allowed sites are blocked.

    We can also manually configure the proxy server to check the result.
    ---------------
    1. To avoid confusion, please clear the “Prevent Internet access (except Web sites below)” option in SteadyState first.
    2. Click Start and click Run.
    3. Type “inetcpl.cpl” in the open box, and then press Enter.
    4. Select the Connections tab, click LAN Settings.
    5. Uncheck “Automatically detect settings”, select “Use a proxy server for your LAN. Input NoInternetAccess to the Address box, 80 to the port box.
    6. Click Advanced, select “Use the same proxy server for all protocols”
    7. Type some websites in the Exceptions space. Click OK.
    8. Check if websites can be accessed or not.


    Sean Zhu - MSFT
    Monday, December 14, 2009 7:12 AM
  • Hello Sean, I've tried the solution outlined above ie to configure the proxy server manually, unfortunately I still get the same result - I can still access websites that are not in the Exceptions list. I see that this issue has been raised a few times on this forum, I've yet to see a satisfactory outcome (except for the solution using Content Advisor). Either this feature is not easily understood and implemented by users of SteadyState or the feature doesn't work. My understanding is that all Internet access via Internet Explorer is barred to the selected SteadyState user account, with the exception of a whitelist as stipulated by the Administrator. I will explain how I set it up, you can tell me where I'm going wrong: My laptop has four user accounts, Admin (myself), Administrator (created by the system) Guest (currently off, and SteadyState user account SS1, that I created in the SteadyState application that is installed on Admin account. The SS1 account is created as a 'Limited Account' by default. At this point my only interest is in limiting Internet access for SS1, so I access the user settings on SS1 and set 'Windows Restrictions' and 'Feature Restrictions' to No Restrictions, so that I am able to change Internet Explorer settings when logged on to the SS1 account. I then log off Admin and on to SS1 and apply manual settings to Internet Explorer as explained in your mail, close IE and re-open. The settings have no effect on browsing, I can still access any site I want. I have tried applying these settings from my Admin user profile as well, with the same result. Have I missed something fundamental ?? Let's try and get this sorted out, I'm very keen to implement this application at a local site with 40 machines. Update: I experimented with various settings and it seems I have established where the problem is: as specified a couple of posts back, my internet access is via dial up, but by following your instructions to manually configure the proxy I am applying restrictions to the LAN. If I select 'Settings' (NOT 'LAN settings') on the Connections tab, applicable to my dial up connection then the process works and only websites specified under Exceptions can be accessed. I assume then that the default setting to restrict access directly from SteadyState will apply to LAN connections?
    Monday, December 14, 2009 1:52 PM
  • It seems that you have correctly configured Windows SteadyState on the computer.

    As this issue still occurs after setting proxy and adding exception in IE manually, we can narrow down that this issue is not caused by Windows SteadyState itself. I suggest you contact with your network service provider and see if they are using proxy server or something like that.
    Sean Zhu - MSFT
    Tuesday, December 15, 2009 4:02 AM