Sep 302008

OpenSSH has built-in support to act as a SOCKS proxy. In my case, there are web sites I can access only from work computers and I need to get to them from home. So, I issue the command from my home computer:

ssh -D 1080 my work IP

However, I do not want to redirect all traffic through work.  Fortunately, you can redirect only selected URLs fairly easily by using a proxy auto-config file.

In firefox, Go to Edit -> Preferences -> Advanced -> Network -> Settings

In the Connection Settings box, select “Automatic proxy configuration URL:” and enter:
The proxylist.pac file may look like this:

function FindProxyForURL(url, host)
// Proxy direct connections to these hosts
if (
shExpMatch(url, "*") ||
shExpMatch(url, "**") ||
shExpMatch(url, "*")
) {
return "SOCKS localhost:1080; DIRECT";
// Otherwise go directly
else return "DIRECT";

For more details on the pac file and auto config, see

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