a bit OT: used laptops, computrace rootkit

Michael Torrie torriem at gmail.com
Sun Mar 23 21:14:36 MDT 2014


On 03/23/2014 06:38 PM, plug.mailing-list wrote:
> I've purchased two computers in the past year.  Both PC's came with
> Win8 installed, but have been running Linux since then.  Here are my
> findings after reading your email (and linked article):
> 
> I purchased a refurbished Dell Inspiron 3520 from Costco (it had been
> opened and returned).  UEFI listed a single setting for Computrace as
> 'deactivated' (no option to permanently deactivate).
> 
> I purchased a new Lenovo T430 directly from Lenovo.  UEFI listed
> Computrace as 'enabled' but there was also a second setting that was
> 'deactivated'.  I was able to change both settings to 'permanently
> disabled' and 'permanently deactivated'.

My laptop shows Computrace as enabled and activated.  So if Windows ever
runs on it, it will be tracking the laptop.  If I was still running
Windows I think I would try contacting Absolute to get it deactivated
and then permanently disable the thing.  Windows never did run well when
I got it (OS would hang frequently).  I thought it might be a failing
SSD, but I now think it was CompuTrace.  Suffice it to say it runs great
on Linux, and Windows is now relegated to a virtual machine.



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