Parental Controls

29 Oct

I thought it would be a good idea to share that lovely image up there that you see when an account get slapped with the Parental Controls stick. I love the little gnomes up there.

We’re going to step away from our regularly scheduled threads of helpfulness and jump into a boring personal post instead. This is the reason why the blog has slowed down over the last few weeks. In an effort to get our house cleaned up, fixed up, and slightly remodeled here and there, my wife and I have placed parental controls on each other’s accounts to limit the time that we spend on the game. But no, I’m not restricted to only weekends like the little gnomes there.

It’s real easy to put off doing something because you “just want to check my auctions real quick” and then four hours later after you’ve already ran a couple of heroics, “oh yeah, well I’ll take care of that tomorrow then,” and things of a similar nature. But tomorrow ends up being a repeat of today as does all of next week, and the week after that, and…

I play the game to relax after I get home from work as my job is primarily taxing on my brain rather than my body so I don’t want to come home and take a nap to refresh, I just want to come home and mindlessly kick the crap out of mobs to refresh. My wife plays the game to escape from stress, which she has plenty of as she’s a worrier. But since we both happen to be escaping at the same time it’s real easy for nothing at all to get done.

I can get my refreshing escape done in about an hour, but that’s more than enough to get me sucked into doing something so that I lose track of time and/or forget about other things that need to get done, and my wife is most likely doing the same thing over on her computer not thinking to remind me that something needs to get done or trying to get so absorbed into the game that she’s able to forget the things that are causing her to be stressed.

So, we decided that rather than cancelling our accounts for a while to focus solely on our house, which is probably what we really should have done, we decided to just limit our time online instead. And since I don’t have as much time to play as I used to, I don’t have as much to blog about as I used to. However, I do have 9 articles currently in draft form just waiting for me to finish them up and get them published. I do most of my blogging at work while things are slow, but we aren’t having quite as much slow time as we have been which also contributes.

How They Work
In case you are wondering how they work, you get a grid of blocks that represent 30 minute spans of time across each day of the week. By default they are all green meaning that you can play all the time, and a single click on a block turns your play time off during that block. You can click and drag to turn groups of the time off/on to make it easy if you know you always want to block or open a certain section as well. So it’s very easy to manage and takes very little time or effort. On and Off are the only two options for the time blocks and there’s no extra functionality built in for exceptions or anything so if you have next Monday off of work/school you can’t schedule that ahead of time, you’ll just have to go in and manually change it.

When you are in the game and you reach the time limit there are no warnings or anything you simply get kicked out of the game and sent to the login screen with a message telling you that you’ve reached the end of your time due to parental controls. Here lately the timer to kick you off hasn’t been working all that great and we’ve been able to play for up to 75 minutes passed the cut off time, though when we first turn them on it was exact.

And you do have to have the account password to access the controls for that account, but there is another password that has to be set up for the parental controls themselves which has to be different than the account password.

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Posted by on October 29, 2009 in World of Warcraft



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