Write access to linux Hosts file + parental controls

Författare Svar
helloworld Friday 8 March 2013 at 15:29

Hello there and thanks for all your hard work!

General objectives:
We gave our 10 yr old his first computer and ended up full of malware so we installed Xubuntu, however most of his games run on Windows so we let him dual boot but would like to encourage him to stay on the Linux partition for most of his stuff. 

Current Problem:
We want him to be safe online and want to block some sites via the host file in both partitions using a gui that would would check, auto-update and download custom lists on both partitions. 

Found a solution (but in Windows):
Couldn't find an app in the linux world that would do the above but there is one for Windows that would do just that. It is less than a 3MB download called "Hosts Manager" (

Trying to run it on POL:
Installs fine and runs great but I would like to be able to write the resulting hosts file to /etc/hosts and overwrite the hosts file I however believe they might have totally different syntax (different carriage returns characters or other stuff maybe?) so elevating priviledges so it would write to Linux system files as root (my original notion for a solution) might not do to and I might need is some sort of hosts file conversion tool that would take this generated hosts file that is in the Windows format and convert it to something Xubuntu would understand and then overwrite.

Request for help:
Given that the app actually works perfectly this is not a POL problem* so if you know of any hosts file manager with a gui that would work on linux or know of a parental control with an easy gui with black and white lists or know of an easy way (gui only please) to "convert" windows hosts files into *nix hosts files I would be very grateful.

Interesting additional question:
I'm curious about what is needed (or to learn if it wouldn't be possible at all) to get going the hypothetical solution of redirecting the writing this app does to the hosts file on the fake windows machine this app thinks it is in. i.e redirecting the path from C:\\Windows\\System32\\drivers\\etc\\hosts to /etc/hosts. I'm curious about the settings on POL to make that happen and curious about running this app with enough root privileges so that it would have permissions to overwrite the linux hosts file. NOTE: I'm aware this hypothetical solution will likely break the ability of this machine to go online altogether due to the hosts file format discrepancy issue.

Thanks in advance for reading and even more for replying!


Below my kids system specs:

- OS: Xubuntu 12.04 - Windows 7

- Wine version: 1.5.25

- Desktop: Xfce + compiz

- Computer configuration: P4 2.8 GHZ, 1G of ram