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NxFilter 2.8.6

A professional DNS-based web filter for your network

by Mike Williams

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License: Freeware
Operating Systems: Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows 8, Windows Server, Windows Vista (32 bit), Windows Vista (64 bit), Windows XP
Requirements:
Languages: English, Arabic, Chinese, Dutch, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese (Brazil), Portuguese (Portugal), Russian, Spanish
Software Cost: Free
Date Updated: 25 August 2015
Watchlist: Add download to my watchlist
Downloads To Date: 2063
Developer: Jahastech
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NxFilter
A professional DNS-based web filter for your network

NxFilter is a powerful Java-based web filter which controls access to web sites based on their domain names. It's also possible to limit access by user and time, and one NxFilter installation can protect your entire network.

You'll first need to install and configure the program, of course, and that can take a little effort. NxFilter isn't for network beginners, it won't fully set up everything itself, and even the web tutorial doesn't walk you through every detail. It's still not difficult - if you know how to configure your system to use a custom DNS server then you won't have much trouble - but you will have a little work to do.

Get NxFilter running on one PC, though, and it brings benefits right away, blocking known phishing sites and using packet inspection to detect some malware. A browser-based console displays stats on web traffic, blocked domains and more, as well as logging every site you've accessed.

If you need more control, it's possible to create NxFilter policies which block sites by category (75 in total), or only allow access to particular site categories - or all internet access - for a certain amount of time a day. These policies can be applied to individual network users, or groups of users. And you're even able to assign policies based on a time range, so for example an office might have a very loose policy at lunchtime, but something much more restrictive for the rest of the day.

This is just the start. If the default site blocking isn't enough, NxFilter supports adding domains manually, or grabbing the blacklist from www.urlblacklist.com. You get a stack of configuration options, there's even support for authenticating users via LDAP and Active Directory (as well as password and IP address), all while delivering great performance (the developer claims NxFilter can handle "several thousands of users easily").

v2.8.6 brings (Version History):
- Keep logging for request IP address for admin login.
- New parsing algorithm for DomainPatternDic added.
- Tracker domain separated from Ads domain for DomainPatternDic.
- Missing data sanitization on WhitelistDao.update() added.
- Only one category for a custom categorized domain allowed.
- Domain reclassification popup on log-view added.
- Bypass LDAP synch when there's read timeout error.
- AutoCloseable DataBase and RowSet classes added.

Verdict:

NxFilter is an enterprise-level web filter, and setting it up needs some network experience, and a little time. But if you can manage a PC network then you shouldn't have much trouble, and what you'll get for your efforts is one of the most capable and configurable free web filters around.

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

WhatsApp Messenger 2.12.5

Free Full Commercial Software

WhatsApp Messenger is the world's most popular instant messaging app for smartphones.

You can use it to send and receive text and voice messages, photos, videos, even call your friends in other countries, and because it uses your phone's internet connection it might not cost you anything at all (depending on whether you'll pay data charges).

It's easy to set up and use. There's no need to create and remember new account names or pins because it works with your phone number, and uses your regular address book to find and connect you with friends who use WhatsApp already.

You can talk one-to-one or in group chats, and because you're always logged in there's no way to miss messages. Even if your phone is turned off, WhatsApp will save your messages and display them as soon as you're back online.

There's plenty more (location sharing, contact exchange, message broadcasting) and the app is free for a year, currently $0.99/ year afterwards.

Version 2.12.5 brings:

• Per chat custom notification settings and mute
• You can now include videos in your chat backups in Settings > Chats and Calls > Chat Backup
• Mark chats as unread or read with a swipe to the right
• Better support for VoiceOver
• Directly share contacts from the Contacts app and locations from Apple Maps to WhatsApp
• Lower the data usage used during WhatsApp calls in Settings > Chats and Calls 
• Earlier messages now load automatically as you scroll chats
• Improved design for cropping photos and videos
• Location messages now use a large map thumbnail

[...]
Value:
Free
Rating: