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I am responsible for random monitoring of 263 laptops running xp at a typical high school. Many of the students are sharp and know how to delete current history files. I would like to know where IE hides a complete history log that an Administrator can access when necessary. I understand this is possible but I cannot seem to find directions in any of my manuals.

For the sale of clarity, these are school owned laptops and the students and their parents have signed an "Acceptable use" policy agreement. I am not just snooping inadvertently.

Any help toward this end will be appreciated.

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Last Post by firekid1239
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Do the students take the laptops home? if not can you not just put a blocking program on the school network? I do think it would be better to achieve this actively rather than in a passive manor.

I can't find anything about a backup directory for IE history, probably because the developers couldn't see why they needed to create one.

You could try something like this (i have never used it but it seems to fit the bill): http://www.everstrike.com/lock_folder.htm you may be able to stop them deleting the file - but then i don't know if IE can still write to it.

At the end of the day, being a student myself, I know - there is always a way round anything an admin puts on to your pc. Especially because all they need to do is use a proxy and then you won't be able to track it at all.

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I am responsible for random monitoring of 263 laptops running xp at a typical high school. Many of the students are sharp and know how to delete current history files. I would like to know where IE hides a complete history log that an Administrator can access when necessary. I understand this is possible but I cannot seem to find directions in any of my manuals.

For the sale of clarity, these are school owned laptops and the students and their parents have signed an "Acceptable use" policy agreement. I am not just snooping inadvertently.

Any help toward this end will be appreciated.

And I have often hidden my tracks. :P I will check to see how it works at my school, but I know on a normal computer you can access everyone's cookies via the harddrive. This will tell you some of where they have been.
To see cookies (just in case you haven't already tried this):
Go to the harddrive, then Documents and Settings, and you should see a bunch of usernames. If there are none, let me know.

I'll still check out how my system works and let you know.

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I'm not sure if this is above your skill level or not, but give it a shot.

1. Open the Registry Editor.

2. Navigate to the following string:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Control Panel

If you get to the Microsoft key folder and don't see keys for Internet Explorer\Control Panel, you'll need to add Internet Explorer as a subkey of Microsoft and Control Panel as a subkey of Internet Explorer.

3. Go into the Control Panel key folder and create a new DWORD value (REG_DWORD). Name it History. Right-click the History value and choose Modify. Change the data from 0 to 1.

Immediately, your "Clear History" options will become grayed out in your IE Tool menu. When you open the History menu, you'll no longer see an option to delete selected URLs by right-clicking them. If the tweak isn't working for you, close and relaunch any instance of IE you have running.

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I just double checked the fix I posted above on my windows XP system to make sure it works, and it works Perfect!

Also... beware that all a student needs to do is install another browser such as Firefox, Opera, Safari, Netscape, etc... to get around this. They can hide the icons and virtually everything except for the program files folder and no one will ever know it's there. I would get the school to invest in buying some sort of windows control software such as Fortres. To keep students from installing unwanted programs. Winguard pro is another good option and it is free, the only problem with it is that it is easily disabled. All you need to do is go into safe mode and uninstall it.

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Thanx much. Already have a block of unwanted downloads/installs but the students can still open unacceptable sites and thats what we are concerned about. Don't want to overkill the web access but still need to randomly check usagte.

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Just a correction to what I said earlier... instead of making all the registry keys under HKEY_current user make them under HKEY_local Machine. That way they can't make another user account and use delete the history under that account.

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Just so I understand the system...
at my high school we have a system where we are on as power users (we can't install or create other user names, change passwords, etc.)
Through this all of our files are stored at the main office (not even in the same town as us) and we access them through vertual drives. Is this like what you have?

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Just so I understand the system...
at my high school we have a system where we are on as power users (we can't install or create other user names, change passwords, etc.)
Through this all of our files are stored at the main office (not even in the same town as us) and we access them through vertual drives. Is this like what you have?

Well what it sounds like Fragfighter is that the high school is similar to a magnet school where students are assigned a laptop to use for the school year. The school most likely has wifi set up for the laptops to access the web. I would assume that the students laptops are the User's Group so they wouldnt be able to install any programs or anything. I didn't think about that when I was posting the fix. If every account on the laptops are Administrators, well that would just be stupid. But even as a basic user, you can still delete the history from IE.

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