The Quietness of the Library

I am in the process of setting up a computer system in our church library. One of the first things I thought about in this process is “Locking down the computers”. I decided to observe a local county library’s way of doing the same. The library is just down the street from my home. This is a small library — Only 10 computers linked to their wired network. They have just installed wifi, but I am not going to check it for now. Just want to see how the “protected ” computers are setup.

Observations 

  • All are running windows XP professional.
  • all have sound enabled
  •  all have usb ports to allow you to save your work ( assuming you have a memory stick of some sort )
  • Limited programs are loaded.
  • start/run is disabled. no external bat, com or exe files are allowed.

There are some deficiencies noted (so far ) java applications are allowed if accessed through a web page. This means that if you create a web page on a memory stick that has java application within it, you can use your browser to access this application. Voila! An application that you can control.

I have tried the following java application types with good success.

  • 1. ssh client
  • 2. ftp client
  • 3. file browser

None of these cause any harm to their system. I am trying to think of other applications that would be useful if my system at home died. More on this is in a future post.