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WebAllow Review: Block Every Website except Trusted Sites

written by: Donna Buenaventura•edited by: Bill Bunter•updated: 9/20/2010
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Parents and guardians who want don’t have time to monitor their kids’ internet activity prefer to use whitelist method by configuring what websites that a browser can visit. WebAllow application is offering this method. Find out if it’s worth to use or try.

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    Overview

    WebAllow by Ashkon is a tool to only allow access to websites that you trust or allow (aka known as whitelist). Any websites that is not in the whitelist is blocked. Find out if the program will work for your home or office.

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    Features and Options of WebAllow

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    Manually blocking specific bad or unwanted websites is not what you cannot use WebAllow for but it is to block all websites when you enabled it. WebAllow is to be use as white listing technique to prevent any unwanted or bad sites to load using Internet Explorer.

    With WebAllow installed, you can simply add any URL or domain to allow by entering the complete URL address. It also supports wildcards e.g. by entering *.brighthub.com, you allow any websites sub-domains of brighthub.com or *.blogspot.com means you are allowing any blog by any person with any content to be access using IE browser. You may also create your own whitelist in a text file (using notepad application in Windows) to list all the sites you want to allow access (one line per URL address or wildcard entry). You can save this text file anywhere and use WebAllow application to open to browse and use the whitelisted websites on the text file.

    WebAllow lets you password protect the program so nobody can edit the allowed URL address. Another option is to password protect the Uninstall for WebAllow. If ever you forget your passwords, the author will not be able to help because the passwords is not stored anywhere. You might want to try AppRemover in removing such software or request to OPSWAT to add WebAllow in the list of programs to be removed, if password is lost.

    Two other options in using WebAllow: to close all instances of IE so any changes you made in the URL address to allow will take effect and to stay WebAllow on top.

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    System Requirements and Installation

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    The application WebAllow supports Windows Vista and earlier edition of Windows. A reboot is not required to start filtering which websites to allow. It does not support any other browser except Internet Explorer. The installer will prompt for UAC during installation and will use 1.29MB of hard-disk space. A new IE Helper will be installed in the browser as weballow.dll. You have the option to install the program for all user or single account in Windows.

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    Performance and Effectiveness

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    WebAllow will use 2.3MB of memory when in use. If you have User Account Control in Vista or Windows 7, you might want to configure WebAllow to run as admin because even after allowing the install with admin privileges, the product will continuously crash whenever you want it to start blocking all websites except the ones in your whitelist.

    If any website is accessed but not in the whitelist, WebAllow will show a blocked page that is hosted in filesland.com which is located in http://www.filesland.com/blocked.html. No option to change the landing page whenever a blocked site is accessed using IE browser. There is no option to minimize the program to systray or notification area in Windows.

    It’s odd that the author only supports IE browser which means your kids or staff can continue to visit any website using Firefox, Opera and any other browser. Any application that can access any website is also not blocked by WebAllow, even if it’s enabled. Example: You are using POP Peeper to check your web-mail or using any applications to retrieve any messages you have in twitter. Access to those is allowed even if you don’t have twitter.com, hotmail.com, yahoo.com et al in allowed websites.

    Another odd thing is WebAllow do not support any IP address as whitelist. If you know two or more domains are hosted in single IP address e.g. http://www.calendarofupdates.com and http://www.dozleng.com is using 1 IP address, you cannot visit these websites if you entered the IP address only.

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    Images

    User Interface of WebAllowBlock Website Landing PageMemory Usage of WebAllowCrash Error
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    Price to Value

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    At $29.95 for single license with upgrade fee for major version upgrade is expensive. In addition, it's not effective filtering application if you are using other browser and applications that will connect to the internet (email, third-party application to retrieve pictures or messages). A 30-days trial is available from weballow.com

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    Conclusion

    WebAllow is not worth to use, try or keep. You can get better filtering service for free using OpenDNS. If you are only to allow some websites to be accessed by any applications in your network, use a router to restrict access to sites, IP address. You can also use the hosts file in Windows to only allow some domains.