Permanently marking case for security?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by Allgonquin, Aug 30, 2008.

  1. Allgonquin macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2008
    #1
    My son has a newly acquired 13" white Macbook, which he's taking to school soon. There will be lots of other Macbooks at his school, and we know from past experience that the occasional theft does occur.

    While I know it's probably heresy, I'd like to be able to mark the case of his computer permanently, first to easily be able to identify it amongst the other computers which will be around and about, and second for security purposes, so that someone who picks it up with the idea of theft might pass it up in favor of a lower hanging fruit, so to speak.

    Since these computers look so nice, we don't want to just hack the case with a security engraver, etc. and I'm looking for something more permanent than stickers or Sharpies. And we're thinking of only marking the bottom. I know I could send it out for having it professionally engraved, but I'm hoping to hear some ideas for doing it at home, where I'm reasonably well equipped, tool wise.

    Thanks for any ideas.

    Rgds,
    Allgonquin
     
  2. operator207 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    #2
    All of my tools are engraved by me with a hand held engraver. I have used the same engraver to engrave plastic, though not a MB. With a steady hand, and if you mark it out with a thin marker or pencil first, it can look pretty professional. Just do it somewhere that you will not be bumped or disturbed. That is what usually made my engravings look sloppy.

    Other things that would not be physical but could help for theft:

    http://www.orbicule.com/undercover/
    http://www.foozoodesign.com/lockdown.html

    Another option would be some sort of RDF chip you put inside the case of the laptop. Though that may be a bit extreme, and would not be visible.
     
  3. ProwlingTiger macrumors 65816

    ProwlingTiger

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2008
    #3
    I have not done this myself, but it seems logical to engrave it inside the battery compartment. Wouldn't spoil looks, plus if the battery is removed the engraving is still there.





    I'm Dan, and I approve this message.
     
  4. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    Location:
    NYC
    #4
    My friends look after my stuff and I look after theirs.

    I engrave some stuff with a carbide tip.
     
  5. mlemonds macrumors 6502a

    mlemonds

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    Location:
    Lexington, KY
    #5
    i dont think marking it physically would be the way to go unless you make it hideous to where no one wants to steal it. (put a big dell sticker on it) LOL j/k


    the best way at getting the computer back would be to use software that can help you locate the laptop.

    http://www.engadget.com/2008/05/11/stolen-laptop-recovered-with-back-to-my-mac/
    Back to my Mac isn't intended for this purpose but the results were positive.


    http://store.apple.com/us/product/TS718LL/A
    sold at apple stores and online
     
  6. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    #6
  7. Benjamindaines macrumors 68030

    Benjamindaines

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    A religiously oppressed state
    #7
    You can set a firmware password that prevents erasing the hard drive.
     
  8. M4CBOOK macrumors regular

    M4CBOOK

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    #8
    lol
     
  9. janey macrumors 603

    janey

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    Location:
    sunny los angeles
    #9
    I had my MacBook laser etched. The white ones don't look that great when laser etched (it looks a dull brownish yellow), but it's worth a shot if you do ever consider it.

    My laptop sticks out like a sore thumb everywhere, plus everyone knows its mine and it's prolly less likely to be stolen because it's so unique and unremovable (short of replacing the entire plastic casing). Better yet, you could get the name on there so it's even more obvious.

    [​IMG]


    Also, all the products like Undercover are sort of useless, there are some ways to get past some of their protections, and in general you're not going to have much luck getting it back if you lose it (vs. someone explicitly stealing it). I suggest getting laptop insurance if the laptop isn't going to be covered by your homeowners or similar insurance. It's fairly cheap and covers more possible scenarios.
     
  10. bartzilla macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2008
    #10
    I'd agree with putting some additional stuff in the battery compartment for this very reason, but they'd still want something on the outside case to act as an obvious deterrent.
     
  11. xJulianx macrumors 6502a

    xJulianx

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    Brighton, UK
    #11
    Best advice yet. Simple.
     
  12. mlemonds macrumors 6502a

    mlemonds

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    Lexington, KY
    #12
    i was thinking the same thing, but having it where it is not visible isnt going to help on a university campus. It would take a very large man to take my laptop, and rip out my battery without me interfering.
     
  13. Fonzijr1964 macrumors 68000

    Fonzijr1964

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    Maryland
    #13
    Get it painted at www.colorwarepc.com and put undercover on and ur name on the back
    best bet
     
  14. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    NYC
    #14
    Since the firmware password is stored on the HDD, taking the drive out and wiping it will leave one with a blank computer. ;)
     
  15. Fonzijr1964 macrumors 68000

    Fonzijr1964

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    #15
    Criminal mind ^^^
     
  16. mlemonds macrumors 6502a

    mlemonds

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    #16
    great idea...

    i am thinking of getting my MacBook painted after my warranty runs out.
     
  17. Fonzijr1964 macrumors 68000

    Fonzijr1964

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    #17
    i may get my Air painted and when i pic up a new MBP and iPhone i will get them painted prolly too

    I makes it unique so it will not be stolen
     
  18. mlemonds macrumors 6502a

    mlemonds

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    #18
    do you know if their painting technique will cover up any of the small scratches that the macbooks are prone to?
     
  19. Fonzijr1964 macrumors 68000

    Fonzijr1964

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    Maryland
    #19
    yes they will cover up small ones if u mean if u send urs in

    but if u buy one from them it will be very hard to scratch (and of course after it is coated if u send it in)
     
  20. mlemonds macrumors 6502a

    mlemonds

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    #20
    thanks </hijack>
     
  21. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    West Suburban Boston Ma
    #21
    I checked that site; their base fee is $450 for color on a macbook. It's hardly worth paying that kind of money to deter theft. Insurance would be cheaper.
     
  22. Fonzijr1964 macrumors 68000

    Fonzijr1964

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    #22
    but it makes it look cool too
     
  23. OrangeSVTguy macrumors 601

    OrangeSVTguy

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    #23
    You could always do something like this. :D Will only cost you like $50 in parts. And is reversable too.
     
  24. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

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    NYC
    #24
    A new keyboard, top case, and display bezel will cost a lot more than $50!
     
  25. Fonzijr1964 macrumors 68000

    Fonzijr1964

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    Feb 26, 2008
    Location:
    Maryland
    #25
    yeah like 250
     

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