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I bought a new PC and if I ever lose it or it is ever stolen from me I want to have a way to find it or recovery it. Is there any software you can recommend for this purpose?

For instance, perhaps something I could install that would let me lookup what the nearest wifi router to it is. Thanks in advance.

marked as duplicate by Tom, Community Mar 21 '16 at 0:57

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I've heard about Prey but haven't actually tried it myself. They have a free tier to do basic tracking and a paid tier for extra features (like remote wipe, etc). See https://preyproject.com. However, I'd be concerned about the security of an application like that.

The real issue is that PCs don't (usually) have automatic 24/7 connectivity via a cellular network. Without this, if someone steals your laptop and never brings it online, how would it report its location? Or, if you're using normal software installed on the hard drive, the person who stole it may never boot your OS and could just wipe the drive, rendering most normal software useless.

EDIT: Oh yeah, if you use Windows 10 and login via a Microsoft account, you can check on the last known locations of devices at account.microsoft.com.

  • One trick, if you do find something, is to create a second guest account, with only access to a web browser. This means that that if your stolen machine is used, it can be visible on the Internet without giving away too much. I’ve done that on my MacBook, though I don’t know how you would do that on Windows. – Manngo Mar 21 '16 at 0:56
  • I believe it's the same with Windows 10. Otherwise, you'd could use a second, fake web site account (Google, Facebook, etc) that is setup to auto-login (but not with saved password) and set to your homepage. This way, if the thief used your browser (or you force it to autolaunch on login), you could see the login IP and location on the account. (As long as you didn't save the password, which would allow the thief to change it and lock you out of the fake account and, therefore, the location info. – sraboy Mar 21 '16 at 1:34

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