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Home BOINC information Locating stolen computers

Locating stolen computers

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Because BOINC reports back to project servers automatically it may be possible to use BOINC to help you recover a stolen computer. If a computer running BOINC is stolen:

  • Go the the web sites of your attached projects, and click on Your Account > View Computers.
  • Check the 'Last contact time' of the stolen computer; wait until the last contact time is after the time of the theft.
  • Click on the computer ID, and click on Show IP Address

This will show you the IP address from which your computer last connected. If you supply this information to police, it may help them locate the computer.

Mapping IP address to ISP

You can perform a "WHOIS" query to know which ISP owns the rights to assign an IP. Depending on the continent, you can perfom the query from one of the following websites:

  • Europe: http://www.ripe.net/db/index.html (just copy the IP number displayed on the participant account in the "RIPE DATABASE SEARCH" textbox and click the "Go" button)
  • North America: http://www.arin.net/ (copy the IP number displayed on the participant account in the textbox above the "WHOIS" button)

Tracing the route

In addition to looking up the ISP, you can use the command line `traceroute` utility to learn more about the location of a computer based on the IP address. For example:

 
% traceroute 128.32.18.189 
traceroute to 128.32.18.189 (128.32.18.189), 30 hops max, 38 byte packets
1 gateway (192.168.1.1) 2.441 ms 1.554 ms 1.606 ms
2 10.93.224.1 (10.93.224.1) 10.026 ms 7.574 ms 9.840 ms
3 gig-0-2-lbrtnypok-ubr2.hvc.rr.com (24.164.161.30) 9.920 ms 12.462 ms 8.004 ms
4 24.164.160.62 (24.164.160.62) 8.778 ms 8.639 ms 7.939 ms
5 gig-4-3-lbrtnynwb-rtr2.hvc.rr.com (24.164.161.26) 12.104 ms 9.659 ms 9.782 ms
6 pos-1-0-lbrtnynwb-rtr1.hvc.rr.com (24.164.160.145) 9.446 ms 8.809 ms 9.873 ms
7 pos-6-3-nycmnyrdc-rtr1.nyc.rr.com (24.164.160.74) 13.328 ms 12.997 ms 18.808 ms
8 tenge-0-0-0-nwrknjmd-rtr.nyc.rr.com (24.29.119.94) 15.558 ms 13.131 ms 11.833 ms
9 ae-4-0.cr0.nyc30.tbone.rr.com (66.109.6.78) 12.228 ms 17.715 ms 61.374 ms
10 ae-4-0.cr0.dca20.tbone.rr.com (66.109.6.28) 70.707 ms 16.539 ms 18.519 ms
11 ae-1-0.pr0.dca10.tbone.rr.com (66.109.6.165) 30.868 ms 18.375 ms 19.870 ms
12 gi1-23--0.tr01-asbnva01.transitrail.net (137.164.130.209) 17.632 ms 18.113 ms 23.821 ms
13 137.164.129.11 (137.164.129.11) 40.034 ms 39.727 ms 40.148 ms
14 137.164.129.2 (137.164.129.2) 109.249 ms 99.754 ms 99.310 ms
15 te4-1--160.tr01-plalca01.transitrail.net (137.164.129.34) 111.017 ms 100.869 ms 99.893 ms
16 calren-trcust.plalca01.transitrail.net (137.164.131.254) 103.691 ms 158.728 ms 113.899 ms
17 ucb--svl-dc1-egm.cenic.net (137.164.23.66) 133.893 ms 102.498 ms 100.835 ms
18 g3-17.inr-202-reccev.Berkeley.EDU (128.32.0.35) 109.132 ms 100.310 ms 100.037 ms
19 g6-2.inr-230-spr.Berkeley.EDU (128.32.255.114) 99.502 ms 102.298 ms 100.838 ms
20 * * *
21 * * *

This shows the route leads from the computer where `traceroute` was issued to UC Berkeley,
but no information about the route inside the Berkeley network.
 

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