Find out what co-worker did on my mac

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Rebellwa, May 26, 2008.

  1. Rebellwa macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    May 26, 2008
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    Pacific Northwest
    #1
    I work in an office with various macs. The machine I use is the latest G5 with leopard. While on vacation a coworker used my mac, someone I do not trust. How do I see what went on while I was on vacation?
    I can not password protect my machine, boss won't let us and he has no distrust since this individual is very canny.
     
  2. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
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    NYC
    #2
    Now how do you know co-worker used your computer?

    Apart from that, I guess if the guy/gal isn't careful and didn't delete his/her tracks, you could look in finder history, preview history, browser history, etc.

    If you want to decipher if, console logs maybe.
     
  3. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

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    #3
    Does he have admin privileges on this Mac? If not, he could not do anything to hurt the computer.
     
  4. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #4
    If it's a work computer, and it doesn't belong to you, what difference does it make what another employee did with it?
     
  5. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #5
    The way I know she was on my mac is that my daughter works for the same company and walked in on her using my mac. The woman has various other laptops she could have used, and a 3 year old G-5 in the reception area specifically set-up for this. Her excuse to my daughter was "the boss broke my laptop" My daughter checked the Safari history, but that is the only thing I know how to track.
    I simply want to see where she was on the machine. I seriously can not trust this person. That being said, how do I track the use of the machine?
     
  6. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #6
    ......

    exactly, it's not your computer to begin with. if it's the company's computer then you have no business snooping around what another employee did with company property

    if you want that much control over your computer, stick with personal machines that you own
     
  7. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #7
    Please treat this as a technical question, not an ethical one.
     
  8. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #8
    seeing how it is against the law to invade others privacy i think the concern is warranted

    a work computer is not personal property and as such the employer has every right to use and let other employees work on computer if they so choose especially if the need arises
     
  9. bartelby macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    #9
    Does the law cover company owned equipment in a work place, where it may be necessary for more than one person to use a computer?

    EDIT: ah, ok. Your first comment is some what redundant now.
     
  10. merl1n macrumors 65816

    merl1n

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    #10
    You can use the Finder's Find option. Just open a Finder window and type <cmd-F> and search by modified date, last opened, etc.

    I don't know if this will really help you though.
     
  11. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #11
    If it's a company-owned machine, neither the OP nor the coworker have a reasonable expectation of privacy. As it's the primary work machine for the OP, they have a reasonable need to see if anything untoward has been done to "their" machine to ensure that the work they routinely perform is not compromised.
     
  12. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #12
    I guess I will take my question elsewhere. Since I was asking a technical question I expected a technical answer. I do not need a lesson in the ethics of use of a work computer. I don't think I need to explain the ways she has tried to undermind me, how I have taken the situation to my boss, how I have confronted her on her motives, how she has been caught telling lies about my work performance.... this goes on.
    I KNOW that a work computer is the property of my company. I KNOW that technically anyone can use the machine.
    I simply wanted to know how to find out what has been going on while I was on vacation, and have NEVER had any reason in the 9 years I have worked for this company to even question the motives of a fellow employee.
    Thank you to alphod. You treated my question as a technical one.
     
  13. Dimwhit macrumors 68000

    Dimwhit

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #13
    This is my thought. You should be able to check which files were opened. Though any you've opened and modified since getting back won't be checkable.
     
  14. dukebound85 macrumors P6

    dukebound85

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    #14
    good point but most work computers are connected via a network which requires a login

    i would imagine that any decent company network would have privileges set up in a way to be unable to do admin like activities be it install and uninstall apps, music, etc and would pretty much not compromise the machine in terms of work related tasks

    as far as finder related stuff you can click the go->recent folders to see the most recent folders used
     
  15. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #15
    Thank you Johnnotbeatle, you nailed it. It is not always black and white.
     
  16. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

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  17. catachip macrumors regular

    catachip

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    #17
    It's not against the law to check the history, logs, etc. of a "public" use (workplace) computer, particularly if that computer is technically his (his in the sense that it is presumably at his desk or workstation; however, not his property).

    Furthermore, "privacy" is a rather loose term. And it is perfectly legal to invade someone's space, photograph them, track them, when they are in a space with "no reasonable expectation of privacy".

    ... The guy is just asking a technical question. Not for a lecture on the do's and don'ts of office protocol. I don't have an answer for him, but, no need to start lecturing the guy.
     
  18. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 26, 2008
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    #18
    Thank you catachip, though the last time I looked I was a girl (lol) Trying to convey the dynamics of work relationships was not the reason I came on this forum. And you are correct in saying that I do know that anything I do on this company machine, which incidentally was in my (locked) office and turned off, is the company's business. I take my personal Macbook Pro to work for anyting I would deem personal and I am the type of employee who does this on their lunch break.
    By the way, my office was unlocked apparently because someone needed to use my color printer, hmmmm.
    I did not think I needed to bore everyone with this ongoing odyssey of the worst case scenario coworker from hell. I just wanted a technical question answered.
    Thank you to those who did so.
     
  19. JNB macrumors 604

    JNB

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    #19
    But you do! This place is full of those stories! :D

    More to your point, though, as has been said, browser history, Console logs, and general searches using date as a filter ("Where Last Modified is after XX/XX/XX").

    That should be enough to give a sense, anyway, of what type of activity, if any, has taken place. If you can't add any other software, then other utilities (like Spring Cleaning), while very useful, are not part of a potential solution.

    Does everyone have unique logons to the machine, or is it a generic/no login required setup?
     
  20. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 26, 2008
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    #20
    Our logons are our names, yes, very stupid in a sense. This is an owner operated company with no history of misuse. I am a graphic artist who has not generated a thing on the company computer that would be of any interest to the other staff members.
    My bosses feel that I AM trust worthy enough to handle the email accounts, take all things off the fax machine and have the authority to pick their children up from school. The foundations of trust are solid with this couple who I have worked for for almost ten years.
    The employee in questions has solicited resumes to the boss from people who do what I do (though rather shoddy work) and told my boss that my workload is too much so that she can take over some of my responsibilities.
    And I have personally told her to back off.
    But my boss is rather passive aggressive and will not really reprimand her, she actually does have her worth for the company, and strangely enough I agree.
    I hope this "spilling of my guts" illustrates my desire to track what in the world she is looking for on my machine, and perhaps will explain why I need to keep on top of her. I am still trying to figure out why she is doing this.
     
  21. catachip macrumors regular

    catachip

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    Vancouver, British Columbia
    #21
    Hey, I'm sorry! It's probably no surprise that the vast majority of people who post on forums like this are male, however, it's not really good form for me to just assume that.

    Good luck with your quest. I know all about bad co-workers, and the fact that the computer was in your locked office does constitute valid justification for your determination to find out what (if anything) happened while you are gone. It's not like this was sitting in a common area.

    Anyways, what is your worst-case scenario?
     
  22. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    #22
    My worst case scenario? Oh my, I was hoping I wouldn't have to go there. But I am so deep into this on this forum, why not. (Seriously, I only had a technical question, wasn't looking for a therapist, lol)
    I am firstly concerned that she will connive her way and somehow convince my boss that I can not handle the same workload I have been "handling" for years, trying to get rid of me. I am the employee who has been there the longest and has built a good working relationship with my coworkers.
    And then there is the "something" that most men do not understand, but are such victims to. That is to "use" whatever God given "parts" she possesses to get him to listen, sympathize and want (sorry! not all men are this way). He is really no different than most men of that nature, married or not, who can be visually and suggestively swayed, without knowing what hit them, though lets not get into a nature vs. nurture talk.
    Don't get me wrong, this is not a jealousy thing, I have it all over her in the attributes department, I just don't flaunt it at the workplace or feel it is in anyway ethical to advance myself on anything besides my qualifications. Low cut shirts and short skirts are for one's personal time, not a staff meeting on developing a mission statement.
    Women can be vicious and cunning. Guys seem to be up front with their confrontation with whatever issues they have with one another.
    She is a piece of work for sure.
     
  23. HLdan macrumors 603

    HLdan

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2007
    #23
    Good luck to you, I understand your concerns since your boss (for some strange reason) doesn't want to password protect computers in the workplace.

    One thing to note, even if you find what she allegedly had been doing I hope you understand that you can't accuse her, there's no proof, even though someone close told you she was using the computer. At this point find what you are looking for but then just let it go.
     
  24. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #24
    Recent Items generally is a good look at the last 10-15 items someone opened on the machine.

    Along with the recent items lists in Word, Quicktime, etc.

    I think you can also search for a range of last opened items also using spotlight (aka, Last opened within last x days.)
     
  25. Rebellwa thread starter macrumors newbie

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    May 26, 2008
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    #25
    Thank you all. I plan to return to work, check things out, and then not dwell on this anymore than I have to. I also believe the adage that given enough rope an individual will eventually hang themselves. Oh by the way, I am not the only other female coworker she has targeted. I would not have made such a big deal if there had not been some sort of precedence, from the woman in the office next to mine.
    Thanks again guys (and with that I am only assuming you are all guys)
    Rebell
     

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