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How to unblock geoblock with unblock us, for Microsoft Server 2008 or 2011
Geoblocking is a technology that is used to prevent access to web sites from visitors in particular countries or regions.

Recently on Tech Talk Radio, we spoke of the fantastic service that unblock-us.com provide. In a nut shell, if you want to watch video or listen to audio, or even view a website destined for a market other than yours, or in our case - Australia, then chances are unblock-us is the service for you. It's simple and easy to set up. It's fast, and doesn't break the bank. There's a 7 day free trial, then $5 a month.

Cheaper than any pay tv offering in Australia.
Unblock-us

 

At the time of writing this, August 2011, the Unblockus website had detailed instructions for individual Operating Systems, Routers and devices, so please visit the unblock-us.com website for those detailed how-tos.

This page is for those of you who find yourselves behind a Microsoft Small Business Server (SBS) or Server 2008 or 2011.

The trick is to enable clients and media servers such as the WDTV live or the Boxee Box to use the DNS servers that as well as your PC, iGadget or tablet without breaking things like Outlook talking to Exchange.

You can do this in many ways, but here are two we found useful, but first a word of warning. Tinkering with DNS is something that needs a bit of understanding as you canseriously break your network if you do something you shouldn't, so if in doubt - DON'T DO IT.

But you've read this far so chances are you do.

Method 1 - USING DHCP - this will break exchange so don't do it on devices dependent on your server such as Outlook.

DHCPAssuming you use your Server as a DHCP server, that is a server that allocates IP addresses etc. to your clients, then you can edit the prefered DNS server on a per machine or device basis.

The image left shows the DHCP server of a SBS 2008.

It can be found by going to start -> administrative tools -> DHCP on the server

Expand out your server, digging in to IPv4 and scope. This should show you all the machines that this server serves.

Locate the machine or device you wish to alter DNS servers to such as a media device like the WDtv live. or boxee box. Make a note of it's current IP address and Unique Identifier (MAC address)

You need to create a reservation for the device, which is easy in 2011 as your right click the entry and select 'Make Reservation'. In 2008, Right click reservations and then 'New Reservation' and fill in the details.

Once that's made, expand out 'Reservations' in the left hand column and highlight the new entry in Reservations. It should look like below. Then Right click the 006 DNS Servers option, and enter the new IP adress given to you from unblock-us.com. Repeat as necessary.


Method 2 - USING DNS - this wont break Exchange

DNS

 

Using DNS is probably the easiest way to quickly give all devices and computers on your network access to world wide media using unblock-us.com. Open your DNS server, andyou should see something very similar to that pictured left.

Right click on your server name in the left hand column then click properties.

Click the forwarders tab and add the Primary and Secondary DNS IP addresses as specified at the time you signed up. The ones pictured here are for Australia and NewZealand.

Uncheck 'Use root hints if no forwarders are available'

Apply your changes and exit.

That's it. You may need to flush the DNS on your client machines if the changes aren't instant.

This method won't break exchange, but it's worth doing a thorough test of client applications.

You could also use conditional forwarders as well on a site by site basis.

Bugs and Side effects?

None that can be found so far, but we'll post 'em here if we find any.

Comments? Questions?

 

 
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