Prey is free and tracks your laptop, but is proprietary. Are there any open source alternatives?

Edit: I'm talking about something which, if your laptop is stolen, you can use to track its location, take a picture of whoever is using it, and so on

  • 1
    We will need much more information to give good recommendations here – asking for "a tool like X" is never giving enough details, even if linked. You should always list your requirements explicitly (what specific features do you need etc). Please see How to ask for an alternative to some software and the questions linked to it for details.
    – Izzy
    Nov 28 '17 at 13:43

Looking around the web, couldn't find the best to recommend according to your mentioned requirements. But the closest candidate to try is Pombo (which is a bit aged). GUI version see here and installation proceedure

Pombo can help you recover your computer in the event it's stolen. It works on Windows, GNU/Linux and Mac OSX.

How does it work ?

Pombo works silently hidden in the background, sending tracking information to a webserver of your choice.

If your computer is stolen, just log into your webserver to get the lastest file uploaded by Pombo, decrypt and hand it to the police. They will have all they need to catch the thief: IP address, date/time, nearby routers, screenshot, and even a photo of his/her face if you have a webcam !

Pombo protects your privacy: Tracking information is encrypted with rock-solid GnuPG and only you can decrypt it.


  • Protects your privacy: Tracking information is encrypted with a public key before sending, and only you can decrypt it with the corresponding private key. Secure: No port to open, and does not permit remote access.

  • Does not rely on third-party sites/services: You control the client and the server. You can change servers anytime.

  • Totally free: No software fee, no service subscription.

  • Opensource: You can hack it, adapt it.

  • Reliable backends: Pombo does not try to re-invent the wheel and uses solid backends (eg. no home-made encryption, uses rock-solid GnuPG)

  • Only takes a snapshot if an internet connection is available.

  • Discreet: Uses zero CPU, zero memory and does not appear in process list when not active (not a daemon).

Information collected:

System name - Machine vendor/type and serial number - Public IP address - Date/time - Information about all network interfaces (wired and wireless), including hardware address (MAC) of WiFi access point the computer is connected to. - Current network connections - Nearby routers information - List of all nearby WiFi access point, with their hardware address (MAC), SSID and power. - Screenshot - Webcam snapshot(if you have a webcam)

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