View Full Version : Deny access to single URL's ?

04-11-2007, 09:27 AM

my question may sound a little bit strange.

Is it possible to deny access to single URL's using Safari 1.3.2 and OS 10.3.9 ? Please don't make me explain "why" in detail, I assure you, it has nothing to do with sex :p :D
Is there a program that allows me to define certain URL's, protect them with a password, and then another user could not access these sites?

If not, maybe the other way around? Define certain sites that are ok, and everything else is out of bounds?

Thank you for your help,

04-11-2007, 09:42 AM
Check the Safari Help for "parental controls"....I think it looks like it can do that.

Joe VanZandt

04-11-2007, 09:48 AM
Change /etc/hosts to redirect a site to localhost.
For example, to redirect www.myspace.com to localhost.


04-11-2007, 10:05 AM
The "why" may actually be relevant. I think the "hosts" file way will be more effective in blocking sites. The Safari "parental controls" in 10.4 is the opposite, operating more on a "white list" principle, but they don't actually prevent users from accessing "unapproved" sites.

I think the Safari controls were intended to prevent very young children from clicking links and inadvertently coming accross inappropriate materials. If a user has a specific site in mind and wants to view it, the "controls" will have little effect in preventing them from getting there.

04-11-2007, 10:13 AM
To be honest, I've never used the parental controls in Safari, so I am just going by what their "help" file contains, and it LOOKS like it is more restrictive than that. It claims you can block access to sites not listed in the locations list, and explains how the administrator can add or delete sites from that list. But again, this is just what I gleaned from their help file, not from any real-world experience.

The host file approach WOULD be more effective at blocking a single site, however. I didn't check the link that Yellow included, so it may have this information in it, but the hosts file does require you to use sudo to edit it.

Joe VanZandt

04-11-2007, 10:28 AM
I don't think 10.3.9 offers parental controls. If only I had 10.4 ... a "white list" would be sufficient.

To be more clear about what I want: There are two or three sites on the net that I don't want to be accessible (for personal reasons).

The host file solution is way to advanced for me, I checked that article and did not understand a word, sorry, but thank you very much anyway.

04-11-2007, 10:33 AM
It claims you can block access to sites not listed in the locations list, and explains how the administrator can add or delete sites from that list.But again, this is just what I gleaned from their help file, not from any real-world experience.

Yeah, it would be easy to get that impression from the so called documentation. There doesn't seem to be good communication between the developers and the writers / marketers at Apple. If you poke around a little and examine how the controls are set up, it will become clear pretty quickly that the controls aren't designed to block access. The same goes for the Mail.app controls. It isn't that the controls are weak - I think preventing a very young kid from stumbling accross porn, or keeping viagra ads from landing in their e-mails has its uses. It's the documentation side that seems to have misunderstood the purpose, and are promoting the feature as something restrictive.

Similarly, "Simple Finder" doesn't block application use, although you might get the impression that it is the most restrictive setup - the GUI, especially in Panther, makes it looks like the accounts get progressively locked down as you go from "standard" to "some limits" to "simple Finder", whereas the latter two are completely separate. At least the 10.4 web page describes "simple Finder" as a "fun" interface, not a restricted one.

I don't think 10.3.9 offers parental controls.

10.3 had user "Limitations" which was renamed to "Parental Controls", but you are correct - the Safari and Mail controls are something new in Tiger.

04-11-2007, 10:54 AM
Tiger was the one that offered the more improved parental controls not only just for safari, but for the system itself. I can't remember how well Panther could block things out.

I know in my router, I have a section for Applications and Restrictions where I can restrict access to certain URLs and block Access to certain mac addresses during certain times of the week. So, if I were to lets say have a kid, I could cut off their internet access at 9PM every night or whatever.

04-11-2007, 11:00 AM
Tiger Parental Controls only allow to specify which URLs are allowed. You'll have to wait for Leopard to disallow just one URL.

A browser with built-in parental controls might be what you are looking for:

04-11-2007, 11:21 AM
thanks, everybody!

I guess the parental controls in 10.5 are exactly what I am looking for.

04-11-2007, 12:16 PM
if you were inclined to spend a little money there is an app that a user on this forum has used and recommended called mac minder.


here is the old thread with her reviews of the application.


07-17-2007, 07:58 AM
One other program that you could try is Hostal (http://northernsoftworks.com/hostal.html) from Northern Softworks. It's shareware and looks to have just what you need in a very easy to understand interface. Here's a link to the download: http://northernsoftworks.com/downloads/hostal.dmg

I'm a hosts file user myself, but I think this looks to have what you need.

07-17-2007, 08:35 AM
I'm using Hostal... works great, easy to set up, and does exactly what you're asking for. Shareware. Just be aware you're going to have to type in (or cut and paste) the url for every site you want to block, so not a good solution for exercising parental control.... way too many sites to block. One or two sites... perfect.