All You Need to Know About Site Blocking

This article will detail the few caveats to use our blocking feature and provide some steps to ensure it is set up for optimal usage.  Check out this link for an in-depth look at how to block sites using ActivTrak.

 

Blocking can only be done on a Per-Computer Basis

This means that no matter the user that is logged into the machine, the website will be blocked. A website will be redirected to Websiteisblocked.com or a message stating that it cannot be accessed. mceclip0.png

Blocking will be based on group selections if you do not want to block a website across the whole organization. 

Blocking is done through the Hosts file, so if there is an Anti-Virus, Firewall, or other DNS Filter installed on the machine or network, the machine may attempt to use those settings before those that are implemented by us. 

 

Microsoft & ActivTrak Blocking:

It is important to understand that Microsoft protects its operating system from malicious attackers by preventing some of its own websites from being blocked using the host file. These sites cannot be blocked using ActivTrak. Below is a list of sites included:

  • www.msdn.com
  • msdn.com
  • www.msn.com
  • msn.com
  • go.microsoft.com
  • msdn.microsoft.com
  • office.microsoft.com
  • microsoftupdate.microsoft.com
  • wustats.microsoft.com
  • support.microsoft.com
  • www.microsoft.com
  • microsoft.com
  • update.microsoft.com
  • download.microsoft.com
  • microsoftupdate.com
  • windowsupdate.com
  • windowsupdate.microsoft.com

These FDQNs are hardcoded in the following DLL: %WINDIR%\system32\dnsapi.dl

Follow this link to learn more

 

Do Not Track & Blocking:

Putting a user on the Do Not Track list will not remove blocking from a machine as this is machine-based. If you wish to not monitor a user, but block website access, you will need to log into the machine with a user who is not on the Do Not Track list to ensure an update to the blocking list has been made.

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