I am looking for a solution that would require any computer user on a LAN to enter a password in order to access the Internet.

We do not want to restrict it at each individual computer because people have in the past brought in their personal laptops, etc. and plugged them into the network defeating that technique.

It is a small network. There is no server the users log in to, just about 8 legitimate workstations. The problem occurs mostly after hours or on 2nd and 3rd shifts.

Thanks in advance.

  • You could use MAC filters to allow only certain machines to connect. Jan 18, 2014 at 4:56
  • It sounds like you want to restrict internet access to allow only certain devices to access the internet by way of authentication, but if a user knows the password they can simply enter that on any device they happen to have. Could you expand on your question?
    – joeqwerty
    Jan 18, 2014 at 5:32
  • We've ended up restricting access to certain MAC addresses and have the router shut off LAN Internet access outside of office hours. Thanks!
    – Timm
    Feb 13, 2014 at 17:07

2 Answers 2


The only real way to do this is to set up a proxy server that requires authentication.

See: http://wiki.squid-cache.org/FrontPage

On a small network like yours this is a lot of work for such a small result.

It would be better to just restrict access to the network itself from "foreign" computers. Most routers allow you to do this by listing the MAC addresses (sometimes called Ethernet address) of allowed computers and then not permitting network traffic from any other device.

Look for a section in the router configuration called "Ethernet Filtering" or "MAC Filtering". Most routers even have a quick entry system that will enter all the devices it can currently see into the table.

Now you can go back to having users log in to the computers.

  • Tony, thanks for the MAC filtering idea. I've implemented this in addition to just shutting down the LAN access to the Internet when the office is closed.
    – Timm
    Feb 13, 2014 at 17:05

Take a look at IEEE 802.1X

Though deploying 802.1X authentication wouldn’t encrypt the Ethernet traffic, it would at least stop them from sending on the network or accessing any resources until they’ve provided login credentials. What is 802.1X? Everything you need to know about LAN authentication

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