Apart from porting files and folders between computers, you can use USB drive to increase the system’s processing memory, install Windows XP and run Google Chrome OS from it etc. Did you know that your USB stick can be used for locking or unlocking your Windows computer?
Here, in this article, we’ll discuss an interesting feature of USB stick. By installing a small utility you can lock or unlock the computer with a USB stick. Though there is already the shortcut
Win + L for locking the Windows screen, this is much advanced and reliable.
Predator, a tiny Windows application makes your USB flash drive eligible to lock the computer. After setting up this application in your Windows operating system, the computer automatically gets locked when you remove the USB drive without closing the running session. If you want to unlock, just insert the USB stick.
Setup Predator to Lock Down or Unlock your Computer using USB Drive
Download the free edition of Predator from here and install it on your computer. When downloading, make sure to choose the right version according to your operating system.
After completing the installation you need to manually start the Predator from the start menu or using the desktop shortcut icon. At the starting, you will get a message box like this.
Insert your USB drive and click the ‘OK’ button. Now, the ‘Preferences’ window appears.
Here you can set the screen darkness, start-up mode and other options. But what you need first is to create a key on your USB drive. For that, select the drive letter for your USB drive from the drop-down (if multiple USB drives are available otherwise, it will automatically detect the USB stick) and click the ‘Create key’ button.
Fill up the ‘New Password’ filled. If you want to set the manual password input when unlocking, tick the ‘Always require’ checkbox.
Head to the ‘Alarm’ tab to customize the alarm settings. Once completed, click the ‘OK’ button from the top-right corner of the window.
Check in the system tray. If the Predator icon is green then everything is okay and ready to lock your system.
How Does the USB Stick Lock and Unlock Your Computer
1. Predator locks down your computer when you remove the USB stick. It does not close any running instance – all the running process keep running. It just darkens the screen and the keyboard and mouse become inactive. When you return back and insert your USB drive the Windows gets unlocked automatically.
2. You can check the access log to know whether any person tried to access your computer in your absence. You can also setup an alarm system to get instant alert for unauthorized access. Predator uses the USB drive as an access control device. It does not perform any type of modification in the existing data in your flash drive. It keeps changing the security code record in your USB drive frequently. If any intruder copies your USB security stick it will not work because in the same time the code of your own stick changes itself automatically.
3. The Task Manager is disabled by Predator when you remove the USB stick. So no body can terminate any process in your Windows by pressing the keys
4. If you accidentally lose your USB drive, you can unlock your PC with the password you set at the time of starting the software first time.
5. You can replicate the logs with your twitter account by remotely monitoring all the access-control activities.