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I need internet filtering software for a 60 year old Catholic woman

SmokeStacksSmokeStacks Registered User regular
Next week I'm going over to set up a PC for the woman described above. She has very little experience with modern computing, and the first thing she told me after she asked me to set everything up was that she wanted something that would block "all of that dirty internet stuff".

I'm a 26 year old atheist with a sizable collection of dirty internet stuff, so my experience with internet filtering is basically zilch. Do any of you have any recommendations? I need something that is

- Low maintainence. She lives on the other end of town, so I can't rush over there if she has any issues.
- Preferably works with Opera. Her machine is an old Dell budgetbox without lot of RAM, so between Opera's lower footprint and speed dial (she'll only be using a few websites most of the time, so this way she can just click on them instead of typing a URL or going through a favorites menu) I think it'll be the best browser option.
- Is cheap or free.

I'll already have her machine locked down for viruses and spyware, so I just need something that'll keep her shielded from porn. Thanks for any input.

SmokeStacks on


  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    You might try out setting up OpenDNS. I like it because it's app/client-less. I don't know how effective it is for filtering adult content as I use it to block malware/phishing sites only. Test drive it on your own computer and see.

  • SiliconStewSiliconStew Registered User regular
    Tell her to stop browsing for porn. Or unplug the cable. We use OpenDNS filtering, firewall proxy filtering, and link blocking in our virus scanners and can still easily get to all sorts of "dirty" things. Unless you're going to set up a whitelist for her, it's a sisyphean task.

    Just remember that half the people you meet are below average intelligence.
  • mcdermottmcdermott Registered User regular
    In fairness, it's pretty easily to come across some of "the dirty stuff," particularly as defined by an elderly Catholic woman, without trying to. Like, if you accidentally turn off SafeSearch I'm pretty sure there aren't any words you can put into Google Image Search that don't return cocks and titties within a couple pages. Also, far too many pages are far too lackadaisical about ensuring that their ad network images are appropriate for, say, the workplace (or elderly Catholic women).

    That said, I agree. You're not going to win that fight. Show her where the "close window" button is, or unplug the cable. You will avoid 99% simply by not searching for it. The other 1% is nearly impossible to block.

  • FremFrem Registered User regular
    Set up adblock with EasyList or whatever. You can do it with Opera, but it requires a bit more effort than with other browsers, iirc.

    First, because advertisements tend to confuse older users who don't have much/any computer experience.
    Second, because flash ads are evil on slow machines.
    Third, because ads are where you'd see sleazey stuff on normally innocuous websites.

  • AbracadanielAbracadaniel Registered User regular
    edited April 2012
    Also, install something like TeamViewer so you can do remote support for her instead of driving across town.

    Also seconding (or thirding?) OpenDNS. Does a pretty good job, but as others have said, purging the internet of porn is impossible.

    Abracadaniel on
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