What is the best way to montor, report and even limit employee use?

Posted on 2011-05-04
Last Modified: 2013-12-06
Hi there, I have a few customers wanting to monitor and even limit their web activity. They want to be able to produce a history report showing what sites where visited, how long they were there for and the dates based on each computer.

The employees understand that the web use may be monitored as per the acceptable web use policy they sign on employment but it's desirable they cannot see any evidence of this happening and more importantly, not be able to disable or alter any data collected.

The set-ups I would like to apply this to are:
1) 2003 Client server Network
2) Peer to peer network with file sharing
3) Single PC connected to the internet via a ADSL router.

We are look for a cost effective and easy to use and set-up solution.

Any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks Jason
Question by:MXDEWD
    LVL 8

    Accepted Solution

    To monitor the web you would need to implement a proxy server inbetween the machines you want to monitor and your internet connection. The quality of the reporting information will then receive is dependant on the amount of money you have to spend on proxy software (if any).

    Is the network a domain or still a workgroup? A domain will make pushing out the proxy settings simple, without it you would need to manually add proxy settings on every machine.
    LVL 3

    Assisted Solution

    As far as blocking websites or keywords, an easy way to do it would be to block those items in the router configuration... Proxy will track the rest.
    LVL 3

    Assisted Solution

    After doing a bit of research, I would suggest WorkTime Corporate for a cost effective solution. It's a solid product that has fair pricing that changes with each additional client, rather than bracketed to 1-9, 10-25, and etc.

    At a single client license the price is $49.95, but at two it drops to $39.95/ea., three for $36.62/ea., and so on. It also is entirely software based, consisting of three parts: an invisible client application, a server application, and an administrative application.

    I'll add that I was already convinced, and then noticed the impressive list of clients including The White House, Toyota, Disney, and Boston University!

    Hope this helps you out!
    LVL 3

    Expert Comment

    I should add that WorkTime Corporate does not support blocking websites, to my knowledge. So a separate filtering software application or method would be needed if that's a must.

    The #2 suggestion which does it all, also has impressive clientele, but does require a minimum 10-client purchase at $26.25/ea., is Website•Echo. Again, software based with a similar configuration.

    They both are excellent, it really depends on network size, needs, and what "cost effective" means to you or your customers. ;)
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    Hi all, thanks for your advice.

    In the SBS senario, the proxy sounds good. Not sure how to do this - I will start another question.

    On the peer to peer network and standalone PC's, it look likes I would be looking at a combination of ajmehta's suggestion using the router (which I think I can do with out any problems) but I would have to employ Worktime as suggested by Bluethunda.

    Regards Jason

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