Locating stolen computers

From BOINC
Jump to: navigation, search

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 to 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.