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Author Topic: Can anyone suggest to me a very good lock timer for windows 7 (free/opensource)?  (Read 15500 times)

Offline Dr. Junix

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Can anyone suggest to me a very good lock timer for windows 7 (free/opensource)?
I want to limit the use of other users on my PC. I would like to lock them for a certain amount of time before they can login and use the computer again.

And once it is locked the have no choice but to shutdown and wait for time they are allowed to login again.


 

Offline RD

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Your internet provider may allow you to limit internet access to particular times of day,
[if the excessive user does not require internet access for their use than that's not going to work].

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_content-control_software

There is a free "net-nanny" made by Microsoft for Windows which may limit computer use, and can "grass" on your kids ...

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Activity Reporting - Parents can obtain a list of the websites visited. In addition, computer usages time, programs run, files downloaded, and games run will be reported via Windows Parental Controls.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Live_Family_Safety
« Last Edit: 29/06/2011 12:02:17 by RD »
 

Offline Dr. Junix

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what I really needed is to Shutdown the computer at a certain time lets say at exactly 9PM the computer will shutdown, whoever is logged on to the PC. I already created a batch file for that.

What I want is to prevent people from logging in again from 9PM to 8 am, which they won't have a choice but to shutdown the computer. Thanks for your time RD..
 

Offline CliffordK

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You might look at the user/login controls.

I am sure you can specify login times (by time of day) for the domain version of Windows, and I would assume you could do the same for the personal versions.

So, you could make an "open time" from say 8:00 PM to 9:00 PM, which would be controlled by user account.

Specifying, say 2 hrs in 24 hrs may be more complicated to do.

If you maintain administrator rights on the computer, you would have to make sure that your password isn't cracked.  Sorry,I don't have Windoze 7 here...  perhaps I'll try booting up Windoze XP.
 

Offline Dr. Junix

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I haven't stumbled across that feature yet in windows 7. I'll try to find and tweak that. thanks.
 

Offline CliffordK

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I thought it was in XP.
But, I'm not finding it...   :(

I'm sure I saw the feature...  somewhere...  But it could have been with a very old version of Windows, or some other program, utility, or device.

I'm trying to snag a version of poledit.exe.

But, Microsoft seems to have it buried, and it probably only works up to XP anyway.   [xx(]

Unfortunately I don't have access to the domain level management tools at this time.

There are a number of helpful tools in a package called adminpak for Windows XP, but I don't see the feature you need.

Windows Vista and Windows 7 has apparently renamed the toolkit as "Microsoft Remote Server Administrative Tools (RSAT)".

http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=7887

Look at the user and policy management tools.
 

Offline Dr. Junix

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Oh, I also can't find it in Windows 7. BTW, the PC at home is stand-alone, I do not usually connect it to the internet and it isn't connected to any network. So using remote administration is out of the question. What I wanted to do was to shut it down at the exact time which my batch file does.

Well for now it will do the job.
 

Offline RD

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The windows inbuilt task scheduler can be triggered by events, rather than by a timetable ...

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Task Scheduler 2.0 also supports calendar and event-based triggers, such as starting a task when a particular event is logged to the event log, or when a combination of events has occurred. Also, several tasks that are triggered by the same event can be configured to run either simultaneously or in a pre-determined chained sequence of a series of actions, instead of having to create multiple scheduled tasks. Tasks can also be configured to run based on system status such as being idle for a pre-configured amount of time, on startup, logoff, or only during or for a specified time
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Task_Scheduler

NB: the person whose use of the computer you are trying to limit must not have administrator privileges otherwise they can undo any restrictions , i.e. their account should be "standard user" or "guest".
« Last Edit: 30/06/2011 10:53:33 by RD »
 

Offline Geezer

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Of course, you could simply hardwire the computer into a power line supplied via a time-switch in a secure area. That could only be defeated by leaving some fairly obvious clues.
 

Offline grizelda

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If you encode the hard drive with TrueCrypt, only someone with the password can access the operating system and files after the machine is turned on. After the password is given, the computer works normally for all users. The machine can still be started with a boot disk, but the hard drive appears empty.
 

Offline CliffordK

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Of course, you could simply hardwire the computer into a power line supplied via a time-switch in a secure area. That could only be defeated by leaving some fairly obvious clues.
Like an extension cord under the mattress?
 

Offline Bo

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Here is a nice time limit software:
newbielink:http://limit-computer-time.com/ [nonactive]
It is not free but can be used for free with some small limitations in the features. Should be fine for your needs.
 

Offline Geezer

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Like an extension cord under the mattress?


Won't be much use if the computer's power supply is locked in the closet with the timeswitch.
 

Offline Dr. Junix

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LOL.. maybe I can just turn off all electricity at home... thanks for your input guys.. I'll try using trucrypt..
 

Offline RD

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I'll try using trucrypt.

Truecrypt doesn't have any timer, (your brief seemed to require one), and I don't think it is capable of fulfilling your requirements.

I'd be careful using truecrypt (or any other full drive encryption) as Grizelda has suggested: it would be possible to lock yourself out with no way of accessing any of the data on your computer, (not even the FBI could help you).

I still think the inbuilt Windows task scheduler is the way to go ... http://stackoverflow.com/questions/4596422/task-scheduler-show-me-a-message-when-i-lock-my-computer
« Last Edit: 07/07/2011 12:25:19 by RD »
 

Offline grizelda

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The drive should be cloned to an external drive before encrypting to enable restoring the operating system in case of malicious damage. The drive can be unencrypted occasionally to re-clone it to keep the backup current. Of course, normal backups of data should be made to DVD or flash drives.
 

Offline Dr. Junix

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thanks grizelda but that seems a lot of work.. I now installed ChildrenCare software.. very easy to use..

I am just observing for the effects on my immature users.. LOL..
 

Offline Geezer

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What you need is a "coin-in-the-slot" electric meter. Hard wire the PC into the meter and make them spend their pocket money to buy time on the computer. This will give them a valuable lesson in economics while simultaneously creating a useful revenue opportunity for you.
 

Offline RD

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What you need is a "coin-in-the-slot" electric meter

If you want a physical token, Truecrypt and other encryption systems can use a USB stick as a key ...

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USB Memory Key Authentication - Configure a USB memory stick as an authentication key to encrypt the required drives. This key must be plugged into the system whenever the system is started to access the encrypted drive(s).
http://disk-encryption.comodo.com/overview.html

However I doubt these type of USB "keys" have time-limits though, analogous to the coin operated meter.

NB: if you only have one USB key and lose/erase it you are up the proverbial without a paddle.
« Last Edit: 08/07/2011 14:23:10 by RD »
 

Offline yor_on

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This one might help if you want to control your kids curiosity parental control XP. And this one is for Vista (and up) Vista. But to limit the kids actual time logged in, not caring when, you'll have to use third party software like TimesUpKidz. or you can try A freeware alternative that probably is even more advanced.

But the absolute best is to be there, and comment on what the kid does, also telling why you don't like certain sites. When kids surf they often try to 'compete' with friend impressing with the most 'ugly' etc sites. And telling them why you don't like those, and the 'mindset' of guys/gals setting them up will have a more lasting effect than just 'locking them'.
 

Offline Dr. Junix

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that would be too technical, and economically speaking not wise.. Unless I can manage to make a homemade a coin-in-the-slot device on my own.
 

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