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The Microsoft Proxy Server is extensible in that can use employ third party
extensions that essentially serve as plugin filters. Current extensions can scan for viruses,
filter Javascript and ActiveX data and block objectionable sites.
It also allows for remote administration over the web. However as with the other
filter systems, this is at the global level. The Microsoft Proxy Server is designed to
support multiple users and it supports accounts on a user and group basis, possibly
requiring them to log in. However control over these accounts is completely in the hands
of the administrator. Interestingly it also allows a single administrator to easily manage
multiple proxy servers.
Netscape Proxy Server
Like Microsoft’s, Netscape Proxy Server is designed to provide firewall and
caching capability. It runs on a wide variety of platforms, including Windows NT and
many flavors of UNIX. It too is extensible supporting the “Server Plug-in API,” which
allows it to use all of the extensions for other Netscape servers with the addition of proxyspecific capability. These extensions can easily filter and modify a page as it passes
through.
Similiarly, it allows an administrator to manage it remotely. The administrator
can also manage groups of proxies remotely. The Netscape Proxy Server can even e-mail
the administrator about critical events. However, this remote administration does not
extend to the individual users. They do not have the ability to manage their own
accounts.
The similiarities end there however. The system supports both users and groups,
however. The administrator can create user accounts and group accounts and place the
users into groups, using the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP). The
administrator may set it so that users must log on to use it and the system will filter the
data appropriately for that user as dictated by the server administrator.
As with the others however, the Netscape Proxy Server does not support any form
of author control.
CGIProxy
CGIProxy is a simple system written in Perl based on the CGI technique. It is a
CGI script that runs under a webserver that supports non-parsed headers. When a link is
passed to it as part of the url, it contacts the source server, downloads the page and
modifies it before returning the page to the web server to return.
While CGIProxy is a relatively small and minimalist system (1008 lines of Perl in
version 1.1), it does support the handling of forms and cookies. It offers the capability to
block a limited number of advertisements and banners as a demonstration. However, the
code can easily be modified to do other filtering.
The user configures the system by changing variable settings in the source code.
It does not currently support external configuration. Likewise, there is no support for
multiple user counts or anything related to groups; it is just a very simple proxy server
platform.