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Adeona: Open Source Lojack For Laptops - page 2

Adeona Phones Home Stolen Laptops

  • May 6, 2009
  • By A. Lizard

After going to all this trouble, Adeona does not work as intended. You can not rely on it to send position information from your laptop or netbook to whatever machine you were hoping to monitor it from at this time.

There have been reports all over the Net that properly set up copies of Adeona do not retrieve data from the OpenDHT database with a failure like:
---error message

Searching for most recent 1 update(s) in time period [ 04/02/2009,16:48 (PDT) - NOW ]

Connecting to remote storage server...
Trying server 1...please be patient
Succesfully connected to remote storage server

Checking update scheduled on 04/04/2009,15:48 (PDT)
Update replica 0 not available
Update replica 1 not available

Checking update scheduled on 04/04/2009,15:33 (PDT)
Update replica 0 not available
Update replica 1 not available

Checking update scheduled on 04/04/2009,15:12 (PDT)
Update replica 0 not available
Update replica 1 not available

Checking update scheduled on 04/04/2009,14:51 (PDT)
Update replica 0 not available
Update replica 1 not available
. . .
--------end error message

The connection works about half the time. That would actually be good enough if any information could be retrieved. Unfortunately, of the dozens of times I've tried Adeona data retrieval, successful retrieval is decidedly unusual.

Since you're unlikely to see one in real life until after the Adeona fix is delivered, here's the important part of what a successful retrieval looks like.

Checking update scheduled on 04/03/2009,05:03 (PDT)
Update replica 0 not available
Succesfully retrieved update replica 1
===============================
Retrieved location information:
update time: 04/03/2009,05:03 (PDT)
internal ip: 192.168.200.201
external ip: 86.1.2.3
access point: accesspoint
Nearby routers:
no routers found>


Basically, Adeona sends out retrieval information to the OpenDHT server network several times an hour, and on 4/03 , the netbook had been plugged into the net for several hours. There should have been dozens of position updates, not a couple over days.

I tried this a day later, and the 4/03/2009,05:03 (PDT) location information that was visible the day before for mysteriously disappeared. I tried it again, and it reappeared.

Even if Adeona is ever made to work consistently, there's a conceptual problem with it.

If the thief can't log on, just how is software that works after the computer has finished booting going to work? While putting a post-it on the computer with a UID and PW on it would work, it's bad security. Though you could create a guest account with very limited functionality which would have no access to your personal /home tree and leave that as a post-it next to the trackpad. and make sure that your browser password file is inaccessible to unauthorized people.

There is good news about Adeona's current lack of functionality as a program.

I managed to contact the development team, and I was informed that they would try (subject to the usual potential development problems) to get a working version of Adeona out some time in July 2009.

All I can say is that if you do want to use Adeona for security rather than research, check the site, when there is no disclaimer based on an OpenDHT problem, the fixed version is probably ready to go. Or check the Adeona user forum available from the site.

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