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I am a happy owner of Raspberry Pi 3 and I have configured it as my tiny home server + router. It works well, but then I decided to install some content filtering to block myself from easily browsing through time-consuming newsfeeds and stuff during my day. I have found few answers, suggesting E2Guardian, GateSentry and SquidGuard. Unfortunately though, all of them require client-side proxy configuration, or at least this is what I understood from the walk-through guides.

My question is, can you recommend me any solution that would not require any client-side proxy setup, and instead simply block the requsts to declared sites?

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If you just want to lock certain domains wholesale, simply blocking them in DNS is straightforward. You can create DNS entries pointing undesired domains to 127.0.0.1. There are full-blown projects such as PiHole that use this technique to block advertising sites, and you could easily modify such an install.

The problem will be when you inevitably need/want to access a blocked site. The plus to configuring a client proxy is that it's relatively easy to turn off. If self-discipline is your problem, there are browser extensions that are supposed to help with staying focused. Instead, you might want to set up a "focused" work environment without a browser, fun-time apps and just what you need to get work done (e.g. a word processor or text editor). It's straightforward to set up a "serious" RPi image that boots straight into an editor, for example.

All that said, I find that people tend to start using "setting up the perfect distraction-free work environment" as yet another procrastination technique. Don't get obsessed with it.

  • Thanks for the advice. You might be right, that this is simply just another way to procrastinate, but for me it's always that after some time, extensions get removed one way or another - that's why I am looking for something not easily accessible. I'll check PiHole and try to set it up. Thank you! – olhur Sep 13 '17 at 7:15
  • You might try building yourself a dedicated "work" station. I built my HemorWrite (youtube.com/watch?v=X7r6CtPqOu0) a few years ago as a joke, but actually enjoyed writing on it. Unfortunately, the info is all out-of-date, but I'm hoping to rebuild it on a current version. Basically, just boot into a bare desktop with only a single app running. Very little you can do to easily get distracted. – bobstro Oct 24 '17 at 19:01

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