Run a local proxy server

Martin Brinkmann
Feb 1, 2007
Updated • May 29, 2013

I was so excited to write this article that I could not sleep well all night. Yesterday I have published an article that explains how you can setup a webserver on your computer and use it to display websites or share files with your friends. Today I'm going to show you how to use this web server to host a local proxy server that you can access from anywhere on the net to surf sites that are blocked at your current location.

The requirements are that the web server is up and running on your home computer and that the Apache module is started. Download one of the many proxy scripts and unzip it to a server directory.

I suggest you create a new sub directory in htdocs, don't name it proxy but use a name that does not tell anyone what the files in the directory can be used for.This is important as keyword filters may otherwise detect the proxy script based on the name and block you from accessing it. Name it tennis for instance or news.

Test the script by accessing it locally (http://localhost/tennis/) ; If the proxy script appears everything works out fine. Now test it using your remote IP. If the connection works as well, you can access it from any computer with an Internet connection as long as the server is running on your home computer.

Note that you need to know the public IP of your home computer to access the proxy, you can check it here for instance.

It is highly unlikely that this proxy will be banned by admins of your school, university or company because it runs on a dynamic IP and no one has ever used it before.

To secure the directory do the following: Create a .htaccess file - Windows Explorer does not like this kind of files but a good editor should be able to create the file without errors. Add the following lines to the file and save it.

Options All -Indexes
AuthName "Go Away ;)"
AuthType Basic

order deny,allow
deny from all
#Comment 1
allow from

This prevents access to the directory to anyone except the user with a matching IP address. This is not a useful protection if you want to prevent the admins from your school or university to take a look at your server, but it will block access for anyone esle.

A better protection would be to use a password protection, this is done the following way:

Create an encrypted password and copy the result in a file named randomly starting with a . - for instance .grqwev ; Place the file into the directory that you want to protect. Add a .htaccess file to the directory with the following lines.

AuthUserFile /tennis/.grqwev
AuthType Basic
AuthName "Top Secret"
Require valid-user

That is it. You password protected your proxy script running on your local computer. Only users who know the password are able to login and use the proxy, everyone else will not be able to see what lies behind the password request.


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  1. ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Doesn’t Windows 8 know that www. or http:// are passe ?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on August 4, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      Well it is a bit difficulty to distinguish between domains and files for instance.

    2. Leonidas Burton said on September 4, 2023 at 4:51 am

      I know a service made by google that is similar to Google bookmarks.

  2. VioletMoon said on August 16, 2023 at 5:26 pm

    @Ashwin–Thankful you delighted my comment; who knows how many “gamers” would have disagreed!

  3. Karl said on August 17, 2023 at 10:36 pm


    The comments section under this very article (3 comments) is identical to the comments section found under the following article:

    Not sure what the issue is, but have seen this issue under some other articles recently but did not report it back then.

  4. Anonymous said on August 25, 2023 at 11:44 am

    Omg a badge!!!
    Some tangible reward lmao.

    It sucks that redditors are going to love the fuck out of it too.

  5. Scroogled said on August 25, 2023 at 10:57 pm

    With the cloud, there is no such thing as unlimited storage or privacy. Stop relying on these tech scums. Purchase your own hardware and develop your own solutions.

    1. lollmaoeven said on August 27, 2023 at 6:24 am

      This is a certified reddit cringe moment. Hilarious how the article’s author tries to dress it up like it’s anything more than a png for doing the reddit corporation’s moderation work for free (or for bribes from companies and political groups)

  6. El Duderino said on August 25, 2023 at 11:14 pm

    Almost al unlmited services have a real limit.

    And this comment is written on the dropbox article from August 25, 2023.

  7. John G. said on August 26, 2023 at 1:29 am

    First comment > @ilev said on August 4, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    For the God’s sake, fix the comments soon please! :[

  8. Kalmly said on August 26, 2023 at 4:42 pm

    Yes. Please. Fix the comments.

  9. Kim Schmidt said on September 3, 2023 at 3:42 pm

    With Google Chrome, it’s only been 1,500 for some time now.

    Anyone who wants to force me in such a way into buying something that I can get elsewhere for free will certainly never see a single dime from my side. I don’t even know how stupid their marketing department is to impose these limits on users instead of offering a valuable product to the paying faction. But they don’t. Even if you pay, you get something that is also available for free elsewhere.

    The algorithm has also become less and less savvy in terms of e.g. English/German translations. It used to be that the bot could sort of sense what you were trying to say and put it into different colloquialisms, which was even fun because it was like, “I know what you’re trying to say here, how about…” Now it’s in parts too stupid to translate the simplest sentences correctly, and the suggestions it makes are at times as moronic as those made by Google Translations.

    If this is a deep-learning AI that learns from users’ translations and the phrases they choose most often – which, by the way, is a valuable, moneys worthwhile contribution of every free user to this project: They invest their time and texts, thereby providing the necessary data for the AI to do the thing as nicely as they brag about it in the first place – alas, the more unprofessional users discovered the translator, the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, the greater the aggregate of linguistically illiterate users has become, and the worse the language of this deep-learning bot has become, as it now learns the drivel of every Tom, Dick and Harry out there, which is why I now get their Mickey Mouse language as suggestions: the inane language of people who can barely spell the alphabet, it seems.

    And as a thank you for our time and effort in helping them and their AI learn, they’ve lowered the limit from what was once 5,000 to now 1,500…? A big “fuck off” from here for that! Not a brass farthing from me for this attitude and behaviour, not in a hundred years.

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