Windows Live Family Safety

This forum contains discussions related to keeping families and individuals safe while making use of technology. Acceptable topics would range from how to protect families from Internet predators and online pornography, monitoring and protecting cell phone usage and text messaging, locking unwanted television and movies from various devices, protecting and monitoring computer game usage, and promoting safe Internet and technology use.
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Windows Live Family Safety

Postby jerrobertson » Mon Oct 22, 2012 8:53 am

Has anyone used the Windows Live Family Safety program? What did you think of it?

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Postby aaronbarry73 » Sun Dec 09, 2012 2:53 pm

I have been using Windows Family Safety filter for my home PCs for about one year now. Overall I like it a lot - there are a few key features that FS has that other free options do not. There are a couple of drawbacks as well. Here's a list:
1) Ability to "whitelist" is critical for me. We school at home through an online cirriculum, so it is very important that our kids have access to the school cirriculum and related websites all the time, but without access to "time-wasting" sites or inappropriate content.
2) Multi-user support - I can setup different profiles for different users or different times. I have a parent FS account that is tied to the parent admin login on the computers. I have another FS account for the kids to use when they are not doing school. This family account is tied to a login so the kids have to ask and then I can log them in if they are caught up with school, etc. Finally I have the whitelist FS account which is tied to a Windows limited user account that has no password, so they kids can jump on a computer and do their school anytime.
3) Central management - I can block and unblock sites, categories, times and applications anytime, from the web - at work, home, my phone, etc.
4) Multiple ways to block - By time, by site, by category. I can also restrict specific apps or games, such as Steam or Minecraft, etc. This is really handy for keeping the kids from wasting time using other applications when they should be doing school.

1) The application blocking can be a bit buggy. Sometimes the FS filter will block apps that are not on my list. I then have to open the app myself, using an admin login.
2) The only missing feature I can think of is the ability to unblock a particular website for a specified period of time, such as youtube or netflix. If the kids wanted to watch a specific youtube video, for example, I would like to be able to unblock youtube for 15 minutes, 30 minutes, etc and then it would automatically reblock after that time. K9 Web Filter provides this feature and it works very well, but K9 does not have whitelisting or central admin, so for now I have to use both. :)

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Postby douggw » Sun Dec 09, 2012 5:28 pm

I also have used WLFS for quite some time and have been happy with it. It works excellent in conjunction with the free Norton Online Family. (Along with OpenDNS as well).

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Re: Windows Live Family Safety

Postby jkentner » Sun Apr 07, 2013 7:54 pm

I use it along with OpenDNS for non-windows devices. Works good.

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Re: Windows Live Family Safety

Postby Etechnology » Tue Apr 09, 2013 5:53 am

If you children are using more than one computer .This works great.

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Re: Windows Live Family Safety

Postby segbert » Thu Apr 25, 2013 11:27 am

I mostly like the program. I don't really like how the reporting of app usage shows the system tools that run on the computer. They are always showing up as the top used programs, so the games and other applications are always at the bottom of the list.

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Re: Windows Live Family Safety

Postby Andreigh » Mon May 06, 2013 2:49 pm

Never used Windows Live Family Safety because I thought it’s not good but as I read of your comments, I’ll give it a try..

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