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Old 03-05-2009, 12:44 PM   #1
baldurpet
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What's can you do with public computers?


You all know those computers that are in public places like libraries and schools, where you can't access the "Start" menu (it's almost always a Windows computer) and the only thing you can do is use Internet Explorer.

I was just wondering what's possible to do with something like a Linux Live CD or a Live USB. E.g. the computers at my university are Mac computers which are running Windows (crazy, I know). The computer itself is hidden, but I do have access to a CD slot.

Is it possible to run a live CD on that computer? (I'm not sure because it doesn't give you the option to shutdown or restart) What cool stuff could you do?
 
Old 03-05-2009, 12:52 PM   #2
colucix
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The only thing you can do is to respect the policy of the institution providing the computer service. If it has been set up to run Internet Explorer only, you must use Internet Explorer only. That's it.
 
Old 03-05-2009, 12:52 PM   #3
*******
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If booting from CDROM has been turned off in the BIOS then you could try loading a CDROM with virtualisation on it (ie QEmu executable and say a .qcow). Maybe accessing the executable or a batch file or something WSH-like allows you to run stuff. In any case you shouldn't try anything excessive or damaging since the machines aren't your property. IMHO.
 
Old 03-05-2009, 12:55 PM   #4
colucix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ******* View Post
In any case you shouldn't try anything excessive or damaging since the machines aren't your property.
A guest user shouldn't try anything at all!
 
Old 03-05-2009, 01:00 PM   #5
rweaver
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Quote:
Originally Posted by baldurpet View Post
You all know those computers that are in public places like libraries and schools, where you can't access the "Start" menu (it's almost always a Windows computer) and the only thing you can do is use Internet Explorer.

I was just wondering what's possible to do with something like a Linux Live CD or a Live USB. E.g. the computers at my university are Mac computers which are running Windows (crazy, I know). The computer itself is hidden, but I do have access to a CD slot.

Is it possible to run a live CD on that computer? (I'm not sure because it doesn't give you the option to shutdown or restart) What cool stuff could you do?
By agreeing to use a publicly accessible computer you are agreeing to abide by the rules they set in place. Most of the library public computers I've used had fairly full featured usage, schools not so much unless you had a login.
 
Old 03-05-2009, 01:33 PM   #6
thorkelljarl
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It does depend on where you are.

The computers in libraries and educational institutions in Denmark are not generally restricted in what a user can do with the machine as such, but in what can be done with the programs installed, or to the programs on the machine.

Use of a linux live-cd might arouse curiosity if it were noticed, but doubtfully restrictions. The resources provided belong to the Danish commonweal and are as part of a basic understanding of that commonweal for the free use of its members. That is free as in speech, not free as in beer. It is a social contract; we invest, we enjoy. It's a way to make an us that is more than an I written many times. In addition, in that spirit, all libraries, both public and academic are open to all.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonwealth

This Forum is in fact quite Danish.

Last edited by thorkelljarl; 03-05-2009 at 01:44 PM.
 
Old 03-05-2009, 04:13 PM   #7
pixellany
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the question is how to bypass the setup of a computer owned and managed by someone else.

The only relevant answer has already been stated: Don't

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