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Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)


 
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Oliver2000
Board Member



Joined: 29 Jan 2009

Posts: 21


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:30 pm 
Post subject: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

Hi,

I acctually dont use any ip ban etc. for my baord. this is all to much pain in the neck and to easy to change. Ip bans/blocks etc. dont work very well in my opinion.

I suggest for webmasters who want to prevent users from creating new accounts and making trouble, to use a shared_object. 99.99% of the normal users dont know how to get rid of this and this keeps me since years from trouble with unwanted users.

Any new user who register at my portal and login first time get a shared object written on his HD (which they dont see, dont know and browser dont ask dosent matter which browser inkl. the newsest google etc.) and in case of trouble i just block this users pc for ever.

I use certain levels of control, so i not even allow more than one account per pc on our forum and with the same method i block users from creating new accounts if they have already. Even if the user goes to another computer and create a account he cant use this account on the same old machine as he used before since the system compare your first time login with your current login all the time.

He cant create a new account, cant login, cant eve read the forum anymore unless he knows about and how to get it away. (which is very seldem except you work with highly programming knowledged users) the whole check takes milliseconds and happens remote on the system of the user and not on your webserver.

They can only format their system or change computer but not even browser change and reinstall helps them.

Their is no ready mod avalible which is maybe better because not much people know of this option or dont realize it (for any portal etc. not only for phpbb) and so it makes things even easyer for phpbb webmasters.

It is not to difficult to do this and i help out if somebody has interesse and problems with trouble makeing users.

cya
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roadhog
Board Member



Joined: 19 Nov 2008

Posts: 95
Location: Central Texas


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 1:36 am 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

Hi,

That sounds interesting. I used to have to do a lot of IP banning, but like you, I've always wondered just how effective that actually is. Since installing the RAC MOD, I haven't had any problems, but just in case I ever do, in the future, I'm curious how difficult it is to set up the method you use. IOW, I'm not a programmer - would I need to be, in order to install and use it?
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lumpy burgertushie
Board Member



Joined: 19 Nov 2008

Posts: 224


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 9:20 pm 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

do I understand correctly that you are installing something on their computer that they do not know about and have no obvious way to remove it?

if so, that is a huge invasion of privacy.

I would be willing to bet that if your memers knew it, they would leave by the carload and I would be the driver.


robert
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Oliver2000
Board Member



Joined: 29 Jan 2009

Posts: 21


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2009 11:04 pm 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

Hi,

Shared objects are also called "flash cookies" which are used by basicly any bigger webside or portal. (for example youtube, yahoo, ge.com and many more)

The users know about this if they read acctually the terms and conditions of the portal where is explained that this cookies are in use on our portal. I agree that this has to be written in the terms but not more and not less.

Since my portal has more than 2 million unique visitors per month and around 150.000 members i guess nobody has a problem with this.

I agree that people all the time scream about privacy witch is an important issue but i dont see a privacy invasion to safe a cookie with a number since there are no personal information and no privacy issue involved as well as the informations are not avalible for third partys and are not used for anything else as to identify a user.

For me it is more a privacy problem to safe the users ip on your server to block people because you might end up blocking inocent people with the same ip next day.

A user who has a problem with this has nothing else as trouble in the mind and i am glad if they leave the side if they like.

I work with this since years, never had a problem, never somebody even asked or complained so i guess i am not alone with this opinion. Aside of the fact the phpbb writes a bunch of cookies on the visitors browser with many informations which also dont disturb anybody. A flash cookie is nothing else as a normal cookie just better developed. The only diference and point is that users dont know well where to find this kind of cookies and how to delete them unlike normal cookies.

Here some more informations regarding shared objects:

The type of information stored in a Flash cookie (shared object) is limited only by the information that the creating Flash movie has access to. According to Macromedia's Flash MX Security Whitepaper, this is limited to:

* Anything in the actual movie file
* Any information the user provides
* Some configuration information about the computer running the movie
* Flash cookies created by the same domain from which the movie originated
* Servers in the domain from which the movie originated

Cya

PS: i guess you drive pretty alone.... icon_wink.gif
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lumpy burgertushie
Board Member



Joined: 19 Nov 2008

Posts: 224


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:07 am 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

well, maybe so. icon_lol.gif

I did not understand exactly what you were referring to.

It makes much more sense now.

thanks,
robert
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Oliver2000
Board Member



Joined: 29 Jan 2009

Posts: 21


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 2:08 pm 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

Hi,

However you are absolutely right about the privacy concerns in general. I agree with you that little as possible has to be stored about users and keep privacy a important task.

I sometimes only wonder where are the rights for website owners with all this. I mean i work with internet 25 years and sometimes i get really upset about the user rights compared to website owner rights. Somehow the case seems to be always to protect users, privacy, etc. but if you run a site and somebody terrorize you or other members you can not to really do something sense full about it.

So i know that the shared object is not really nice but if this helps to keep freedom and piece for the majority of the members I sacrifice the evtl. privacy discussion on that. I believe that all this tools and possibilities always depend on the eye of the beholder and on the way how to use them.

Cya
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~Cowboy~
Board Member



Joined: 08 Dec 2008

Posts: 297
Location: Chicago


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PostPosted: Tue Feb 03, 2009 3:58 pm 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

Perhaps you could simply make the object self deleting after 60 or 90 days so it is not making useless junk compiling on users machines. Lets face it, no one wants useless files on their computer and this is what happens when some one visits a board with this kind of security on it. If everyone did that then you could pick up 100-500 useless files every day. icon_eek.gif

I am interested in this, but I can see both sides of the argument...

I guess the bigger question is how badly do you need to do this? I think the answer is if your having a real problem then it can be a viable solution. However if your not having issues with bans being evaded then you probably shouldn't be forcing this on your visitors.

I have had boards that I could have used this on, no doubt. But in the vast majority of cases IMO it's not needed.

It would be nice to have instructions on how to do this on this board just in case someone needs it though . icon_biggrin.gif

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Sylver Cheetah 53
Board Member



Joined: 17 Dec 2008

Posts: 426
Location: Milky Way


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 2:54 pm 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

Is there a MOD for this? icon_smile.gif
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My Forum || My Blog

phpBB2 forever! icon_smile.gif
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Merri
Board Member



Joined: 02 Feb 2009

Posts: 63
Location: Kanta-Häme


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:30 pm 
Post subject: Re: Tip to get rid of unwanted forum users (IP block sucks)

So... what happens when user doesn't have flash installed on their machine?
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