Ever wondered what your internet connection is being used for? You could be a parent with kids surfing the Net, or an employer who allows employees to use the web for personal use. How do you know that the connection isn’t being abused? How do you keep track of which websites have been visited and what services are being used? The answer is to deploy some sort of monitoring and access software. The reason I was thinking about this, is that I wanted to track what websites were being accessed by different family members and who was doing it. So I’m thinking of deploying the freeware version of GFI Web Monitor, an internet monitoring and access control package that can help me answer all those questions.
The package itself seems pretty comprehensive, with a huge database to help site categorisation, bandwidth reports and even includes the ability to monitor and block connections in real-time. It could serve as a good debug tool, even though I’m not doing that much .net development any more; it’s an idea way to proxy any web requests you may make to figure out if your application is in fact calling the right endpoint and forming its requests correctly.
The other use of GFI Web Monitor is to control access to particular sites. If you have an open Wifi connection, you could be held responsible for people using your connection to access illegal sites, whether these are download sites, pornographic or other dodgy websites. GFIMon allows you to restrict access to categories of websites and has an extensive database of over 200 million domains that helps it decide whether to allow access to a particular site or not.