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Young kids just got their first computers .. need help locking down

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So I finally gave in and let the kids have their own computers ... with teaching done 100% out of the portal for their assignments it only made sense.

However, now I need to lock that S**** down haha. Where should I start looking/researching for best ways to filter/block all the bad stuff.

Thoughts on how to help stop them from clicking on potentially bad website ads and all that too?
 
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Disclaimer: I do not have children.

I'll offer a few observations.

The first is that Microsoft probably has some sort of parents' guide on restricting Windows features on PCs. For sure there are sites that advise parents how to increase protection for children for a variety of computer using situations.

There are plenty of third-party solutions. I can't vouch for their effectiveness but these services are periodically reviewed.

For example, Tom's Guides gives the venerable Net Nanny subscription service an Editor's Choice award. Net Nanny is one of the earliest content control suites tracing its lineage back almost 30 years.

However, there are two larger issues/opinions.

Children should be supervised by parents while using computers. You may think you are more clever than your kids but you should be prepared for possibility that one day they will prove you wrong. It's the same issue with videogame consoles, smartphones, etc. There is a ton of online activity that's inappropriate for children.

The other main issue is that your children will likely be able to bypass some of your restrictions when they are visiting friends whose parents are less strict or less technically savvy. This is not a new concept. Many decades ago I watched television at neighbors' houses and eventually my parents caved in and bought a television set but viewing time was both limited and supervised.

If a parent says, "Don't do ____" some kids will think "Gee, maybe I should try doing ____." I won't make any assumptions what side of the fence your kids are on. Basically their respect for your authority should be first line of defense. If that defense is porous or flimsy, I'm not convinced that any amount of technology is going to provide ample protection.

But the first step is for you to know what's on the screen. Put the new computer in the family room or living room and make sure there's at least one adult with an eye out on what's happening on the screen.

There's no way for any of us here to assess how much trust you place in your children and how much esteem you hold in their ability to make sound judgments on proper use of the Internet. All I know is that many teenagers have not fully developed nuanced decision making skills and often make poor choices.

Best of luck.
 
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If the computers are in a public area of the house, you may not need to do anything. We made a point of not making anything physically off limits for our kids, instead explaining the dangers of things and of course making sure the bleach, etc. is in a reasonably secure area. They probably only ate a few tide pods, tho, they'll recover (j/k). Our kids gaming PCs are in the main room in the house, and thus are always visible not only to the parents but also to them as well. We taught them not just to click on anything but yes, in the first 3 months of having them, Chrome got bogged down in malware but Firefox never had that problem. Cleared Chrome and since then have had a rare search engine hijack but nothing worse.

Basically we want to give them the sense of responsibility and if there's a breach of it, then we will discuss remediation. ~4.5 years so far and practically nothing of note to report after those first 3 months.
 
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If the computers are in a public area of the house, you may not need to do anything. We made a point of not making anything physically off limits for our kids, instead explaining the dangers of things and of course making sure the bleach, etc. is in a reasonably secure area. They probably only ate a few tide pods, tho, they'll recover (j/k). Our kids gaming PCs are in the main room in the house, and thus are always visible not only to the parents but also to them as well. We taught them not just to click on anything but yes, in the first 3 months of having them, Chrome got bogged down in malware but Firefox never had that problem. Cleared Chrome and since then have had a rare search engine hijack but nothing worse.

Basically we want to give them the sense of responsibility and if there's a breach of it, then we will discuss remediation. ~4.5 years so far and practically nothing of note to report after those first 3 months.
Reads like you never leave your kids alone. What a commitment.
 
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Beside Software a good secondary protection would be the cloudflare DNS that automatically blocks adult sites and similar stuff:
my brother uses it for his kids and it works pretty well so far.
 
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Just let them watch porn. Bobs and veganas never harmed anyone.
 
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I am a bit lucky. My son uses a school administered chromebook. But, youtube is allowed and used for classwork. That is a slippery slope. Outside of school hours, my router is the firewall to stop YT. I set up parental schedules based on time of day for a particular device. The nintendo switch gets no internet during school.

A different approach...I have also used kiosk mode for my youngest. That was in use on an elo AIO. Think drawing and simple coloring apps.


My son is 11, daughter is 5. If they want to crack out on YT, they do it on the family TV.
 
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Hi,
Upgrade the os to 10 or 11 pro so you can use group policy too !

Add a real password to the default admin account
Add your admin account and don't give them the password of either.

Add them as a standard user account
Do everything via host file there are plenty of good host files like mvp host file/ crypo host files/...

Let them learn through hard knocks after that
Standard accounts can only do so much.

Make plenty of system images :laugh:
 
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I am a bit lucky. My son uses a school administered chromebook. But, youtube is allowed and used for classwork. That is a slippery slope. Outside of school hours, my router is the firewall to stop YT. I set up parental schedules based on time of day for a particular device.

...

My son is 11, daughter is 5. If they want to crack out on YT, they do it on the family TV.
This is a good example of why young kids Internet usage needs to be supervised.

Many sites have a mixture of content, some of which is kid-friendly, some of which is really adult-oriented.

All of the social networking services are like this. So even if Instagram forbids nudity, there's plenty of adult behavior there. Let's remember that some children have body image issues due to incessant and often unrealistic portrayals of physical beauty and what's acceptable or even desirable as behavior.

No family oriented DNS server is going to prevent Instagram from hosting reels of college kids at spring break.
 
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Honestly, if they are young, IMHO (but I am not a parent), a whitelist is the best option. There is no other way to stop stuff from slipping through the cracks. I would keep them far away from social media personally as well. Other than whitelisted sites, there is plenty of fun and educational stuff that they can do offline on a computer (unless it is a Chromebook/box perhaps...).
 
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Reads like you never leave your kids alone. What a commitment.

Nope. The PCs are in a common area and we have a small house. You're rarely a few steps from the (relatively, lol) large central room where the PCs are, so any "monitoring" takes care of itself.
 
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So I finally gave in and let the kids have their own computers ... with teaching done 100% out of the portal for their assignments it only made sense.

However, now I need to lock that S**** down haha. Where should I start looking/researching for best ways to filter/block all the bad stuff.

Thoughts on how to help stop them from clicking on potentially bad website ads and all that too?
Maybe getting the power outlet the PC/router is running from on a separate breaker and locking the breaker box?
Just a thought.
 

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OpenDNS lets you do very specific filtering.

And +1 on having the computers in shared rooms/supervision, and more importantly age appropriate education on the dangers of the internet. Very important if they're playing Roblox or any other game with social elements.
 
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They'll be on here asking how to bypass whatever you setup...:laugh:
 
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Adblock on browser and filter everything through DNS.
 
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Back in the 2000's the parental controls we had were very regressive. 90% of the time they would just lock sites because of random stuff and you couldn't even tell what triggered it.

Honestly coming from myself as a kid who went through all this, the best thing you can do is keep the computer in a public area. Even better, install traffic logging software to keep track of what websites are being loaded and what search terms are being used. That way things aren't locked down with passwords but it's still hard for kids to view shady stuff and it goes unnoticed, even if browser history is wiped.
 
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... Very important if they're playing Roblox or any other game with social elements.
We shutdown Roblox a long time ago. Fortnite is only social he can use, and we monitor friends that we can call the parents.
 

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They'll be on here asking how to bypass whatever you setup...:laugh:

Probably some of their friends already know how to bypass parental controls and share the info.

It seems to me that the internet is flooded with porn. Even Youtube has porn on it. Amazingly there is a nude scene with Brooke Shields when she was 11 on Youtube. How this didn't get banned by Youtube is beyond me.
 
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The location of hosts file is the same in earlier windows versions.
 
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Lock all inappropriate content. Kids are supposed to be kids. All adult stuff will come eventually no matter what.
Switch/router with blocked sites and/or specific content.
 
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I actually miss the simplicity of Parental Controls on Windows 7. Windows 10 MS shifted allowing control of Parental Controls from being setup directly on the device in question to needing to be tied to MS server and handled through their end.

I tried linking one of the kid's laptops to my MS account so I could configure parental controls and the shit just won't work. It's been a fucking headache trying to get it to sync up and if it was working and I need to change something, I can't just hop on the device in question and make changes. I have to log into my MS account, adjust parental control settings, save the changes and if the device in question isn't online, it won't get the changes you made.....what a stupid fucking direction MS took parental controls.

I had to resort to site blocking plugins on chrome. I had to go out of my way to remove edge from the computer. My son was upset that youtube was blocked on the computer, but he got over it as he played his minecraft or roblox on it....also having UAC enabled keeps him from installing anything without my permission. I just wish parental controls wasn't screwed up by MS. I had zero issues using it with Windows 7 when my daughter was younger and she wanted to use my computer....I'd just log into the account I setup for her and I could make parental control changes on the fly by just logging into my account on the computer and making adjustments for her account on it.
 
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Block it, lock it, dock it.....

This is what I did when my kids were young, using a combination of software & hardware tools, router controls, whitelisting, and remote controlled power outlets in their rooms...

And I did the same to their 1st cellphones, but that was a bit less effective, cause if they hadn't seen it before then, they would find a way to find whatever they wanted to see anyways....
 
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Hi,
Add a real password to the default admin account
Add your admin account and don't give them the password of either.

Add them as a standard user account
Do everything via host file there are plenty of good host files like mvp host file/ crypo host files/...

Let them learn through hard knocks after that
Standard accounts can only do so much.

Make plenty of system images :laugh:
Hi,
Forgot to add upgrade the os to 10 or 11 pro so you can also use group policy for other controls.
 

eidairaman1

The Exiled Airman
Joined
Jul 2, 2007
Messages
40,780 (6.54/day)
Location
Republic of Texas (True Patriot)
System Name PCGOD
Processor AMD FX 8350@ 5.0GHz
Motherboard Asus TUF 990FX Sabertooth R2 2901 Bios
Cooling Scythe Ashura, 2×BitFenix 230mm Spectre Pro LED (Blue,Green), 2x BitFenix 140mm Spectre Pro LED
Memory 16 GB Gskill Ripjaws X 2133 (2400 OC, 10-10-12-20-20, 1T, 1.65V)
Video Card(s) AMD Radeon 290 Sapphire Vapor-X
Storage Samsung 840 Pro 256GB, WD Velociraptor 1TB
Display(s) NEC Multisync LCD 1700V (Display Port Adapter)
Case AeroCool Xpredator Evil Blue Edition
Audio Device(s) Creative Labs Sound Blaster ZxR
Power Supply Seasonic 1250 XM2 Series (XP3)
Mouse Roccat Kone XTD
Keyboard Roccat Ryos MK Pro
Software Windows 7 Pro 64
Lock all inappropriate content. Kids are supposed to be kids. All adult stuff will come eventually no matter what.
Switch/router with blocked sites and/or specific content.
Gpedit.msc, regedit to disable downloading of webbrowsers, yse a kids only browser
 
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