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I 'look after' the wireless internet for a cafe where I live, and we've noticed that there's quite a substantial slow down of internet speeds when certain users are playing internet poker.

I've put in filters to block any HTTP traffic referencing gambling and poker etc, however I want to be able to block any applications (i.e. poker clients) which don't use HTTP.

I've tried searching around for a list of poker clients and perhaps their ports, but have had no real luck.

Does anyone know what these might be?

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2 Answers

Blocking specific apps will be quite difficult, and an ongoing struggle. Plus there will be collateral damage if you block things (other apps might use the ports you block, or send the keywords).

You might consider setting up some kind of QoS which limits the bandwidth for each client. That would make sure noone can hog bandwidth, no matter what they do.

Also, consider spelling out to users what is / is not allowed on your network. Or simply warn / and or block users who hog bandwidth. That would be a more general solution than just going after poker users.

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+1: Limiting bandwidth is definitely the way to go. I would recommend some research on what the poker apps use and compare to other online apps/games like WoW. –  IAbstract Apr 29 '10 at 11:54
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What about just blocking everything except the standard HTTP ports?

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That would work, however we do have a number of people who come in and want to be able to IM, or VPN to their office, check emails etc - allowing only HTTP and then those other ports would be an uphill battle - it would be best to block the 'most' offending ports (i.e. the poker clients). –  Matthew Savage Apr 29 '10 at 8:21
    
As long as those clients use standard ports, it shouldn't be that many. And of course you shouldn't open any ports just because people want to. Would maybe be a bit of a battle at first, but shouldn't be much problems after a little while. Kind of like installing a firewall on your own computer. At first you are overwhelmed with "this tries to connect, do you allow this?", but then after a while you hardly even notice that it is there because you have accepted the ports that you regularly use. –  Svish May 3 '10 at 12:52
    
Either way, @sleske is probably the way to go in this case :) –  Svish May 3 '10 at 12:53
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