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Network and Classroom Management Thread, USB Monitoring Software in Technical; ...
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    AngryITGuy's Avatar
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    USB Monitoring Software

    Does anyone in a school use any software to monitor and control what files students bring in to school on portable media?

    I think such software exists in fact I'm sure it does as I remember having a demo of it quite sometime ago the name just escapes me at this moment in time.

    I want to know how well the software works within a school environment and some recommendations so I can research a project I have going on at the moment.

    Students and USB media isn't a huge problem here at the moment but its starting to become annoying!

    Group policy seems to only restrict access to executable file types leaving students free reign to bring in flash games, music and videos on portable media and mobile bloody phones.

    We'd love the ability to control file access on removable media but I don't think the school is willing to fork out for the luxury.

    I'm looking at creating an application to do this for me or at least provide some of the functionality that the paid for packages provide.

    I've already got code which can scan a removable device when it is detected and delete any banned file types it finds. Only problem with the code at the moment is that it deletes the files without warning to the user!

    I'm looking to develop this further so that the application is able to warn the user if banned file types are detected giving the user the option to remove the device before the files are deleted. I'm also looking to scan the content of the drive and output to file a list of all the filenames found on the device.

    I'm sure the school will be allowed to delete banned file types from removable media if the school AUP is updated to state this, what I'm unsure about is if we can scan the content of the media and make a record of this along with the name of the user who has plugged it in as itís likely to be classed as personal property of the user?

    Is anyone able to shed any light on this for me please?

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    Theblacksheep's Avatar
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    One of the chaps is working on one here.... for flash and inbedded flash.

    The test version hides the files on the USB sticks. They cant change the property in school and its not gone.... just not available in school

    Our AUP states we scan anything plugged into the school computers.... the program emails suspicious files and when it has taken action.

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    AngryITGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theblacksheep View Post
    The test version hides the files on the USB sticks. They cant change the property in school and its not gone.... just not available in school
    Are the files unhidden automatically when the deivce is removed from a school computer?

    Can they not just navigate to the file using the Windows Explorer address bar as the file still technically exists on the USB stick or do you restirct that via GPO too.

    Its an interesting take on the problem, I may even pinch the idea as an alternative option for my app!

    Cheers

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    Theblacksheep's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AngryITGuy View Post
    Are the files unhidden automatically when the deivce is removed from a school computer?

    Can they not just navigate to the file using the Windows Explorer address bar as the file still technically exists on the USB stick or do you restirct that via GPO too.

    Its an interesting take on the problem, I may even pinch the idea as an alternative option for my app!

    Cheers
    They are not unhidden, we didnt bother with that... it can change readonly files too. the program emails when it finds files it takes action on a known file.... it also emails on unknown and gives you the hash if you want to add it to the blacklist.


    Yeah, restricted by GPO.

    We've patented it, sorry

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    AngryITGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theblacksheep View Post
    We've patented it, sorry
    Never mind, so it the software still being tested or have you deployed it at the school?

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    Quote Originally Posted by AngryITGuy View Post
    Never mind, so it the software still being tested or have you deployed it at the school?


    version 1 is being used in school, but it doesnt get imbeded flash.

    version 2 is being tested which is catching embedded files ok. Still in test.... i'll see if we can release it when its done if you want, drop me a PM if you are interested.

    P.s. quality blog, always makes me chuckle.

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    AngryITGuy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theblacksheep View Post

    version 2 is being tested which is catching embedded files ok. Still in test.... i'll see if we can release it when its done if you want, drop me a PM if you are interested.
    I might just do that once you finish testing it cheers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Theblacksheep View Post
    One of the chaps is working on one here.... for flash and inbedded flash.

    The test version hides the files on the USB sticks. They cant change the property in school and its not gone.... just not available in school

    Our AUP states we scan anything plugged into the school computers.... the program emails suspicious files and when it has taken action.
    Gee, what an interesting concept. Does it work only for USB or other removable media?

    And we have kids working in CS3 who have a legitimate reason for handling flash files - are you able to cater for them?

    Cheers
    Geoff

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    Um, i think Impero will do what you want and theres an endpoint tool by GFI that seems to work quite well?

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