Originally Posted by BehindEnemyLine
You can try http://anon.inf.tu-dresden.de/index_en.html
(JAP Anonymity & Privacy). I believe it offers encryption and an anonymous proxy server for http (not sure about https, ftp, and other protocals). Just one catch actually - it might be slow - sometimes very slow depending your speed & the network's.
As for as "invisible" to the network administrators might be unlikely. Your computer is assigned an IP address that is probably linked to your account (the username and password) that you used to log on. They usually keep a log of the time logged on and logged off. But then again, I'm not IT or know much about networking. They're all my guesses
. Your best bet is to use encryption.
Give it a try to see how it goes.
Good advice. I would try PGP instead and use an SMTP server.
To encrypt your messages, the best encryption program that is widely used for e-mail and other things, very reliable and quite easy to use is the Pretty Good Privacy (a.k.a. "PGP"). You can get it athttp://www.pgpi.org/products/pgp/versions/freeware/
It's freeware, and the source code is available, which is a good thing, specially for developers
If you do not plan to use the smtp (or anything else your school may use) server that your school uses, you still can use another server to send your messages. You can run a server on your own computer, or even use one on the net, like Hotmail, Netscape (http mails) or anonymous smtp server. There are lots of them... (that is how spammers hide their addresses).
Anyway, every traffic you send to those servers can be easily seen at the school gateway. The use of their smtp server only makes it worse. The good solution is to use PGP with a high level of encryption (128 bits or more would do it).
For the http traffic (things you see through the net), sorry. They can see what you're doing, even if it's probably a privacy crime (at least in my country).
Hope it helps, David.
PS.: If you plan to use encryption, use PGP.