As a new member, I thought I'd do a bit to contribute to the forum by writing a little tutorial about a technology topic I'm knowledgeable on.
In a society where many people use the Internet at work and school as part of their everyday activities, it's no wonder that many corporations and education institutions block a good portion of the web. Sites blocked may be limited to adult content, but often include popular social networking sites such as MySpace and Facebook as well as popular forums, including PbNation.
What is a web proxy? How do they work?
Often referred to as "proxy" or "website unblocker", a web proxy is a special sort of site that loads websites through its own servers and delivers them to your computer, which allows the web filters and firewalls responsible for website blocks to be bypassed. Simply put, they are a middle man of sorts between you and the Internet. Web proxies are a popular way of getting around website blocks.
Proxies are pretty straightforward and easy to use. Say for instance my company decided to block PbNation. If I wanted to unblock it, I would go the the Internet address of a proxy site (see below for a list of good proxies). I would then enter the URL of PbNation then click "Submit", like I would with any other web form. The proxy would then take me to what is known as a "proxified" page, which would be PbNation in its unblocked form. From there I could browse the site as I normally would, except it wouldn't be blocked. Pretty cool, huh? Proxies work with just about every website out there.
Where can I find proxies?
There are thousands of proxies on the web, but many of them just plain suck. Many are riddled with pop-ups, while others are slow as a snail. Below are a few proxies I've used in the past and recommend to friends.
You might notice that a few sites look kind of weird with proxies. Not all sites work perfectly with proxies, but most do. Proxies also cannot load flash video. This means sites like YouTube and MiniClip won't work with proxies. This proxy
is an exception. It will unblock some flash video sites, including YouTube. It doesn't work with many of them, however.
All the proxies I try to use are blocked!
Some web filters can detect and block proxy websites. Network admins are constantly on the lookout for new proxies to block. If you find all the proxies you try are blocked, try using this website, Houston Great Books
. It's a stealth proxy disguised as a ready website
I hope this guide is of use to everyone in this forum. Your school or workplace might can block PbNation, but now you know a way to get around it!