Confused by proxy servers

I’ve just spent about an hour on google* and I am more confused than enlightened at this point…

I am trying to use a proxy server for an https address**. Usually, I just use, plug the address in and that’s all there is to it. It will not allow me to use the service free with an https address. After my google adventure I realize I know nothing about proxy servers.

Now I have many questions. Some sites had lists of ip addresses, but how would I use those addresses? I also saw socks. What is a sock? Is it legal? How is it different from a proxy? (If it is not legal, please do not give instructions on how to use one.)

Does anybody know of a free proxy server for https addresses? How about an inexpensive one?

Thanks in advance for a quick, “Proxies for Dummies”

*I just couldn’t help but thinking about this thread.

**long, boring story why I am doing this, no porn, sorry.

https indicates that a secure link is made between your computer and the other end. Looking at, it looks like that that’s a chargable extra.

if you want to use a free proxy server, in internet preferences under IE (I am using a mac, IE) there should be a form for entering the proxy servers address. Note that the lists of free proxies are often out of date quickly so don’t expect to hit a working proxie straight away.

I am not sure whether they work for https but worth a try

SOCKS is an application/communication protocol that can be used as a firewall or IP router. I am no expert, but it acts to insulate one part of your network from the outside world. However, it can also be used as a proxy server for outside requests if it is set up that way