I've been asked how to prevent access to myspace.com on Windows systems without having to purchase or install blocking software. Well, there's a free and simple way to do this.
Here's a quick trick to block myspace.com on a Windows system. Basically, you are editing a text file on your computer, adding an entry to it. This file is known as the 'hosts' file, and it allows you to block sites using a very simple but effective method.
The file is located in these locations, depending on your configuration:
Windows 2K = C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32\DRIVERS\ETC
Win 98/ME = C:\WINDOWS
You can edit the HOSTS file with the following command:
A simple way to do this is to use the "Run" command in the Start menu:
In the box that pops up, enter:
Add the following line to the bottom of your hosts file, on separate lines:
After you make this change, save the HOSTS file (hit ctrl-s keys, or File->Save in the notepad menu.) You should reboot (or shut down and restart) your computer in order to ensure these changes take effect. Now, then, when you visit www.myspace.com (or myspace.com) using Internet Explorer or any other web browser, you should see an error message indicating that the web site is not available. The drawback to this technique is that you have to configure your computer to prevent your kids from altering the HOSTS file. In XP Home, this is not a simple task due to the limited administration tools in XP Home. In XP Pro, you need to ensure that your kids are not using the Administrator's account and that their accounts are set up as a normal user.