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The gov't agency where I work just installed new PC filters that took effect today. Apparently I can no longer browse anything wine-related on my lunchbreak. It filters anything to do with alcohol. Bang I have not tested it much to see what else it may filter. No need to tempt fate.
So after 9 years (!?) of crusing this site every weekday, I now need to find some other way to spend my time. And I'll be posting from home from now on.
On the bright side, maybe I won't spend so much on wine anymore. Roll Eyes
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Back to the point at hand, I am blocked at work also. It is totally random, no access to the forums, but the main site is no problem. And yet I can get on WB. Can't look at Cellartracker but was able to go on through Grapestories. Most wine retailers are blocked, but many are not including Wine Library. However their Cinderella site is a no go. Wine Searcher is also blocked, so I can't even look for deals while I am supposed to be working.
quote:
Originally posted by Red guy in a blue state:
I was able to get around our network filters by using a direct link to the forums, rather than using the main WS site.


Same thing happened here. I figured the word "forums" in front of the Winespectator totally fooled those IT guys. Big Grin However, I also resolved the issue by not going to the office anymore than I absolutely have to.
quote:
Originally posted by tanglenet:
Same thing happened to me. We upgraded our annual Sonicwall firewall spam and virus filter, and poof, all alcohol sites were now restricted. My outside IT guy wasn't involved and knew nothing about it.


So what happens when you try to see one of these blocked sites? Is there an error message or what?
quote:
Originally posted by aphilla:
quote:
Originally posted by tanglenet:
Same thing happened to me. We upgraded our annual Sonicwall firewall spam and virus filter, and poof, all alcohol sites were now restricted. My outside IT guy wasn't involved and knew nothing about it.


So what happens when you try to see one of these blocked sites? Is there an error message or what?


"This site has been blocked by the Network Administrator" "Category Alcohol/Tobacco"
Yeah, I played around a little with it today. WS Forums are a no-go any way I try. Direct/indirect, didn't matter. It will only go to a text-only version of the main WS site. Not so helpful.
Also blocked, much to my dismay, are email offers from wineshops like WTSO. I still get the offer, but I can't link to the website. So I can no longer jump on something in limited supply. Mad
Oddly, I can still get onto Pete's Wines in Bellevue & Baer winery, but about 95% of my other wine links are blocked. Crazy
There is an "override" option, but it warns that my work email address will be noted and forwarded onto HR (or whoever). The override is only good for 4 weeks and after that I am ordered to explain exactly "...why you need access to this website for work." So with all the downsizing still going on around here, I don't need to be on anybody's radar.

I think this is a direct result of a memo that was circulated early this year. Apparently anything done on county computers (that is not otherwise confidential under the law) is now subject to the Freedom of Information Act (FIA) and that includes what we look at during lunch breaks. So now any busybody can request to snoop through our history. Roll Eyes Roll Eyes
We have already gone to court to block a FIA request from a highly dangerous individual who was seeking personnel information about county employees.
being an IT guy and a wine guy I am torn as to what to do. Sit quietly and watch ur struggle with access or point u in a direction or two which will help you ahem bypass ahem certain restraints.
First my disclaimer- you may have an IT usage policy and any/all of the mentioned items may violate said policy. IF your job is blocking sites and u bypass their measures they may frown upon this action by you.
There are a few things from simple to difficult that you can do.
Set up remote access from your work machine to your home machine (can be done via windows help and support, logmein, bomgar, VNC, etc) You may have to experiemt with a few different connection techniques. Once connected to home PC, browse from their instead of work browser.
Figure out how to set up home machine as proxy server here: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/h...hool-with-freeproxy/
Google FREE PUBLIC PROXY SERVERS LIST -- Anonymous Proxy
Install cheap usb wireless card and search for open network to use for your lunch time browsing (disable/disconnect network cable first)
Use a personal device and avoid the whole thing is my personal suggestion!!!!
differentdave, I appreciate the advice, but where I work, they would do much more than just frown. (Hint: I'm a small cog in the Wheel of Justice.) I'm just venting here.

I realized today that I can go to my personal email account provider and email directly to info@ or sales@ and try to buy that way if necessary.
For instance, I cannot access the Garagiste website, but I can reply straight to Nicki, who manages sales there.

Maybe Santa will bring me an ipad for Christmas.
You're so lucky. I'm still blocked.

I'm curious though, not being an IT guy...we have Checkpoint. It seems a lot of us got blocked around the same time. Do any of you IT folks know, was this something that changed with Checkpoint (& similar systems), or is it just a coincidence that we all had these sites get blocked around the same time?
quote:
Originally posted by AllRed:
You're so lucky. I'm still blocked.

I'm curious though, not being an IT guy...we have Checkpoint. It seems a lot of us got blocked around the same time. Do any of you IT folks know, was this something that changed with Checkpoint (& similar systems), or is it just a coincidence that we all had these sites get blocked around the same time?


usually just goes by keywords.

usually they block social networking and forums will usually get banned.
Maybe it's just a christmas present from management, but I am somehow able to get on today. Cellertracker is still a no go, but a couple of retailers that are usually blocked opened up. Confused Maybe I should see what I can spend my half priced JJ Buckley gift cards on. I feel that's a better use of my time today than actually working. Smile

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