The internet is an endless library of websites, and for the most part, it can be a useful tool. Researching is much easier with the internet, gamers can play with people from all over the world, and companies can communicate with their customers more efficiently. There are also plenty of controversial areas of the internet. Adult content, for one, is easily accessed and with little to no restrictions in place. So if you have children or worry about employees wasting time, you might be wondering how to block websites on Windows 10.
Stumbling into the wrong section of the internet is easy. All it takes is one wrong click, and you’re there, and most of the time it’s because of popups. Those irritable windows that come out of nowhere can take you to pornographic websites, distracting games, and gambling sites. With that in mind, if children use your computer, you can prevent access by blocking those websites.
Why Would I Want to Block Websites?
Blocking certain websites can be useful in various instances. At the moment, you may not feel as though this would be something that helps you but consider the reasons below.
Protect Your Children
The most critical and useful reason to block websites is for child protection. Children don’t fully understand the importance of internet safety, and it doesn’t take long before they stumble across a site they shouldn’t be on. Adding website blocks prevents them from accessing anything you don’t allow.
Stop Employee Distractions
Your employees may need computer access to do their job, but that doesn’t mean they require access to every website on the internet. Employees can get distracted by social media, YouTube videos, and online flash games. Block those distractions altogether, and your employees will be twice as productive.
Limit Bandwidth Usage
To cut down on bandwidth costs, it can be a good idea to pay for a limited bandwidth connection. However, if someone who lives with you starts downloading movies or watching YouTube for hours each day, your download limit will quickly be reached. In some cases, this could also cost you a lot of money. Blocking any bandwidth-heavy websites can stop users from reaching the limit.
Preventing Unauthorised User Access
To be extra cautious of your personal data, you might want to block websites temporarily. For example, your online banking website or social media accounts. By temporarily blocking any sensitive sites, you can leave your computer without worrying that someone will access your personal information.
There are plenty of reasons for knowing how to block websites on Windows 10; those are just a few noteworthy ones. In the end, it doesn’t matter what your purpose is; the solutions in this article work in any situation.
Top 3 Solutions for Blocking Websites on Windows 10
After doing some research, we were able to find out what the most effective ways of blocking websites on Windows 10 are. In the guides below, we will be explaining what the solutions are and how to implement them.
Method #1 – How to Block Websites on Windows 10 Using a Website Blocking App
The first way how to block websites on Windows 10 that we’re looking at is by using a website blocking application. Searching the internet will get you a lot of these apps, but our recommendation is to use HT Employee Monitor or HT Parental Controls – of course, whichever you use depends on why you’re blocking websites.
- Step #1 – Download HT Parental Controls from HT-Vector.com and install it accordingly.
- Step #2 – Launch the tool and navigate to the “Website Blocking” utility.
- Step #3 – Next to “Banned Websites” click on the “Add…” button.
- Step #4 – Type the URL of the website you want to block in the box and press “OK”.
- Step #5 – Repeat this process with all the inappropriate sites you want to block.
Although this is for the parental version of the program, the employee equivalent is very similar. Within this tool, you’ll also be able to access other computer monitoring tools, including:
- Application blocking
- Website limiting
- Time controls
- Remote access to change settings
HT Parental Controls and HT Employee Monitor are both very flexible tools, and if you want to block websites on a Windows 10 computer, this program will assist you.
Method #2 – How to Block Websites on Windows 10 with the Hosts File
Moving on, you can also block websites by making changes to Windows’ hosts’ file. This file dictates how your computer connects to specified domains – when you enter a domain on a browser, the hosts’ file will redirect you elsewhere if the hosts’ file specifies it to. Admittedly this sounds more technical than it actually is, but here’s how you can use it in this situation.
- Step #1 – Locate your computer’s hosts file. It can usually be found in the folder “C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc\hosts“.
- Step #2 – Open the file using a text editing application (Notepad, Notepad++, or WordPad will work fine).
- Step #3 – Scroll down the file and find the entry “127.0.0.1 localhost”.
- Step #4 – Make a new line below this and type “127.0.0.1 website.com”, replacing website.com with whichever site you want to block.
- Note: consider adding a second line with “127.0.0.1 www.website.com” to eliminate users getting around the block.
- Step #5 – Save your changes and close the file.
- Step #6 – After restarting your computer, whenever a user tries to access the website, it will appear as blocked.
It’ll take you a long time to learn how to block websites on Windows 10 when blocking a handful of sites, but this method doesn’t require any third-party software. Hence, it can be seen as better than the previous solution.
Method #3 – How to Block Websites on Windows 10 with Windows Family Safety
Microsoft’s own software, Windows Family Safety, is another way you can block websites. This program is only effective if the user is not an administrator, and here’s how it works.
- Step #1 – Download, install, and set up the Windows Family Safety software on the computer you intend on blocking websites on.
- Step #2 – Once you have the software ready, go to “Control Panel > User Accounts and Family Security.”
- Step #3 – Select the user you are blocking websites for.
- Step #4 – Enable “Family Safety” and then click “Web Filtering” below.
- Step #5 – Choose “Users can only use the websites I allow” and then click “Allow or block specific websites for user.”
- Step #6 – Enter the website you want to block in the entry box and click “Block.” Repeat this for all of the sites you don’t want the user to access.
Adding all of the websites to block can take a while. Alternatively, you can enter a list of websites that you want the user to have access to. This limits them to only this list of websites.
How to Block Websites on Smartphones
You should know you have an educated understanding of how to block websites on Windows 10, but what about smartphones? The methods above won’t be useful for smartphones, but Spyzie can be.
- Allows website blocking on iPhones and Android smartphones
- Easily view browsing activity from an online dashboard
- Block website and application access
- Track the live GPS location of the target’s device
- Monitor text messages, phone calls, and social media
- All-in-one smartphone monitoring tool
Spyzie is not just perfect for blocking websites; it’s an overall effective smartphone monitoring tool which has a demo we recommend checking out.
To Conclude on How to Block Websites on Windows 10
Keeping your kids safe online and ensuring your employees remain focused are both things we can solve by knowing how to block websites on Windows 10. Now that you know exactly how to put website blocks in place, you can go ahead and do just that. Even better, you can block websites on their smartphones with the help of Spyzie as well!