Saturday, December 27, 2008

How To Use A Proxy Server

This blog is "bloggerstatusforreal.blogspot.com", and is currently accessed through its custom domain URL as "blogging.nitecruzr.net". Depending upon how you are connected to the Internet, you may be able to access it using either, one, or neither URL. Some private and / or public networks, such as schools, private companies, and / or ISPs may filter access to "*.blogspot.com", for one reason or another.

If your access to the Internet is through a network which is subject to filtering, you may be able to access your blog by using a proxy server. Using a proxy server isn't difficult.

Normally, to access this blog post, you
  • Type the URL of the post into the address window in the browser.
  • Hit Enter.
To use a proxy server, you simply add an additional step - you
  • Type the URL of the proxy server into the address window in the browser.
  • Hit Enter.
  • Type the URL of this post into the address window in the proxy server page.
  • Hit Enter, or Go.
From then on, you surf by clicking on any link, as usual.

Nothing mysterious there.

That said, you need to know how to pick a proxy server. Surely, just as fast as you learn to use a proxy server, the operator of the network which blocks BlogSpot is learning and blocking proxy servers. So, have alternatives available.

I currently use the Anonymouse Proxy, in my browsing - and my documentation. You may choose what you like.
  • Click on any one of these links.
  • Paste or type in the blog or website address, where it says to enter the blog or website address.
  • Hit Enter, Go, HideMyAss, or whatever.


To find an infinite, and updated, list of other possible solutions, just Google for "free proxy server", and pick one. Proxy servers, like any web sites, comes and go. Have alternatives, and know how to pick others.

One of the downsides of using a proxy server is increased latency - you may notice that web pages seem to take longer to load, sometimes 2 or 3 times longer. Normally, as you surf the web, you
  • Type the URL of the target web page, into your browser address window (or click on a link from another web page).
  • Wait briefly, while your request is uploaded, to the target web server.
  • Wait a bit longer as the content of the target web page is downloaded, to your computer.
  • View what's been downloaded.
When you view web pages through a proxy server, this is a bit more complicated.
  • Load the proxy server home page.
  • Type the URL of the web page, into the proxy server address window.
  • Wait briefly, while your request is uploaded, to the proxy server.
  • Now, you have to wait for the proxy server.
    • Wait a while, until the proxy server is available to read your request.
    • Wait while your request is uploaded from the proxy server to the target web server.
    • Wait while the target web page is downloaded to the proxy server.
  • Wait still longer as the content of the target web page is downloaded, from the proxy server to your computer.
  • View what's been downloaded.
It's like having to go through another layer of management, to get a project approved at work. You spend too much time waiting.

So use a proxy server, when it's needed. If you use a proxy server simply to isolate your computer from possibly malicious content though, you may benefit more by using a sandbox.

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