Well, I’m here at Reading University and one of the joys of living here in halls is using the wonderful internet connection, shared with many other download-happy students.
As well as the speed being quite variable, there’s also a greater security risk, especially when transmitting passwords over normal, unencrypted HTTP connections. To solve that problem, I SSH into my server, still sitting back at home and tunnel HTTP traffic through the SSH connection.
This creates a SOCKS proxy server on my local machine and I can push the Mac’s traffic through it. It takes a long time and is fiddly, however, to switch the SOCKS proxy on and off from System Preferences, especially when (as in my special case) you can’t use Leopard’s Locations feature.
The AppleScript applications provided below are a quicker solution. Launch the right app, type your password and the proxy is flipped on or off. Nice and simple and much less fiddly than messing around in System Preferences.