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Wednesday, July 27, 2005 

Internet Proxy

Last summer, during my internship, I found that the company I was working for blocked certain sites I had attempted to go to. These sites weren't "bad" sites, just non work related sites. I found this very annoying because I had a lot of down time, and I wanted to use it to read up on the latest gadgets and such. After doing some poking around the net (like I always do) I found the best way around this is to use an internet proxy. In short, an internet proxy is simply a website that loads in another website. That way the information isn't coming from a"bad" site it's coming from the proxy site. That was a pretty slimed down explanation, check out this Wikipedia's entry if you want to get something more in depth. The site I used last year for this was proxify, it was a great site with a lot of good features, although to get all the features you had to pay a little bit of money. Today I came across this article on how to set up your own proxy server using your home computer, plus using SSH tunneling to encrypt the data going between the two computers (work and home). When I was reading this article I realized you can take this concept a little further. Since Putty (an SSH client) is a single executable you can put it in a flash drive. Therefore if you place both Putty and portable Firefox on a single flash dive you can carry around a complete secure proxy wherever you go, no matter what computer you are at. Of course you will need your home computer running for this to work, but this bypasses having to setup anything on your work computer and risk your employer finding out. Of course this is one of those things you take at your own risk, and if you get fired for doing this well it means you probably weren't doing it right =p

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