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Old 02-17-2014, 09:49 AM   #1
Pete2Pete
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Teacher knows when Ubuntu is booted


Today I booted ubuntu from a flash drive at school, just to play around with it. Unfortunately, the computer teacher somehow found out after the fact, first pulling in a classmate and questioning him, then pulling me in. It soon became apparent that booting another operating system went against the school's electronics policy.

While I had no knowledge of this, I am curious as to how she knew that somebody had booted Linux. Students have to log into provided user accounts to access the computers, but to be honest I don't know much about this sort of thing.

Could explain to me how she was able to find out that somebody had used Linux?
 
Old 02-17-2014, 09:54 AM   #2
schneidz
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maybe the web-browser user-agent id string was logged somewhere ?
 
Old 02-17-2014, 09:57 AM   #3
dolphin_oracle
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I'm assuming this is a High-School. Most school systems have proxy filters set up, so your user-agent string from the browser, which will specify windows/mac/linux, was logged. Schools don't like booting from a usb because it takes the PC outside the controlled school ecosystem.
 
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Old 02-17-2014, 04:26 PM   #4
jefro
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Sounds like a good school. They ought to stop you from using the public's hardware to play with.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 05:14 PM   #5
FMCDH
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The new Core i3-7 chips have backdoors into the computer even when turned off. They do not rely on ANYthing on the HD to "come alive". He could have something monitoring each computer and you cannot stop him easily.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 05:18 PM   #6
TobiSGD
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FMCDH View Post
The new Core i3-7 chips have backdoors into the computer even when turned off. They do not rely on ANYthing on the HD to "come alive". He could have something monitoring each computer and you cannot stop him easily.
Any links on that?
 
Old 02-17-2014, 05:31 PM   #7
FMCDH
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TobiSGD View Post
Any links on that?

Google is your friend...........

“Secret” 3G Intel Chip Gives Snoops Backdoor PC Access

Intel Core vPro processors contain a “secret” 3G chip that allows remote disabling and backdoor access to any computer even when it is turned off.

*

The promo also highlights the ability for an administrator to shut down PCs remotely “even if the PC is not connected to the network,” as well as the ability to bypass hard drive encryption.

*

“Core vPro processors contain a second physical processor embedded within the main processor which has it’s own operating system embedded on the chip itself,” writes Jim Stone. “As long as the power supply is available and in working condition, it can be woken up by the Core vPro processor, which runs on the system’s phantom power and is able to quietly turn individual hardware components on and access anything on them.”

Although the technology is being promoted as a convenient way for IT experts to troubleshoot PC issues remotely, it also allows hackers or NSA snoops to view the entire contents of somebody’s hard drive, even when the power is off and the computer is not connected to a wi-fi network.

It also allows third parties to remotely disable any computer via the “secret” 3G chip that is built into Intel’s Sandy Bridge processors. Webcams could also be remotely accessed.

*

The ability for third parties to have remote 3G access to PCs would also allow unwanted content to be placed on somebody’s hard drive, making it easier for intelligence agencies and corrupt law enforcement bodies to frame people.

“The bottom line? The Core vPro processor is the end of any pretend privacy,” writes Stone. “If you think encryption, Norton, or anything else is going to ensure your privacy, including never hooking up to the web at all, think again. There is now more than just a ghost in the machine.”
 
Old 02-17-2014, 05:41 PM   #8
suicidaleggroll
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Sounds like IPMI to me, and all of the rumors also appear to stem from the ONE undocumented source, which is full of crap.

I mean c'mon, do you really think intel has slapped in a separate processor, flash, RAM, 3G modem, AND a 3G antenna capable of making it through the heatsink, through the CPU case, through your house, and to the 3G network, all without increasing the size or power requirements of the processor, with included data fees, for free?

See the comments section from the original Jim Stone "article", that ALL of the others reference:
http://www.popularresistance.org/new...ntly-hackable/

The sub-processor can USE your peripherals, including a 3G modem if you have one, but it doesn't have its own. That article is nothing more than sensationalist BS...just look at the site that it's on for god's sake.

As for the OP's question, I'm going with a proxy server and user-agent.

Last edited by suicidaleggroll; 02-17-2014 at 06:02 PM.
 
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Old 02-17-2014, 05:44 PM   #9
TobiSGD
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The Intel vPro technology is a feature of certain Intel chipsets (and yes, it is their version of IPMI). It has nothing at all to do with the Core i-CPUs.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 05:56 PM   #10
dugan
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Honestly, I think that the most likely explanation is that the teacher knew because someone told her.
 
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Old 02-17-2014, 06:20 PM   #11
evo2
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Hi,
Quote:
Originally Posted by jefro View Post
Sounds like a good school. They ought to stop you from using the public's hardware to play with.
Perhaps I missed something, but why do state that it is "the public's hardware"?

Evo2.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 06:30 PM   #12
dugan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evo2 View Post
Perhaps I missed something, but why do state that it is "the public's hardware"?
He's assuming (wrongly, perhaps) that it's a public school, which would mean that the computers are paid for with public (i.e. government) funds.

Last edited by dugan; 02-17-2014 at 06:40 PM.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 07:34 PM   #13
ericson007
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Another reason the teacher may know is because often in a computer lab environment, the mentor monitors each station in order to view progress etc. So they have remote desktop capabilities that puts all the clients online in their view, they can then simply click and view what the student is doing.

If the client does appear or does not connect like it usually does, it is normally pretty easy to understand the computer is not behaving. If the student seems busy working on the machine, then that could be cause for alarm as well.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 08:05 PM   #14
jefro
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If the school has a policy, does it matter? It is still wrong.

I suppose I could get past it. I am unwilling to assist in hacking. The simple discussion of the issue is in effect teaching the kid how to get past the rules.
 
Old 02-17-2014, 09:11 PM   #15
k3lt01
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In Australia the Federal Government supplied laptops and they had a light on the lid. Windows light on, others light off. Teacher sits at the front of the room counts the lights, 30 laptops 29 lights the options are
1. someone has not started their machine (a requirement at the start of the lesson).
2. the laptop has a broken light and needs to be sent in for repair (student is required to let school know as soon as there is a problem).
3. someone is using a different OS to the one that was pre-installed (student gets into trouble).
 
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