How To Make Your Computer Catch People Stealing Your Porn

Here’s how we rigged our computer to make a video of itself and caught the Geek Squad stealing porn from it.

Disclaimer: These instructions are for intermediate to advanced computer users and we will not provide any support nor be liable for anyone who turns their computer into a scorched pile of rancid silicon.

1) Load up a base Windows XP system, and fill it with sweet, sweet “honey”. As a baseline, our Poohbear system was a 1.2 GHZ AMD Athlon with 256MB of RAM, about the minimum system requirements you’ll need.

2) Set up software that would allow us to review the actions that took place during repair.

3)

Send it out into the field.

Two main pieces of software make up Poohbear’s guts:

• TightVNC (or any VNC program)

• Pyvnc2swf

TightVNC operates as the recorder, providing an interface to output the desktop of the PC. Pyvnc2swf captures the results of those images and archives them into a file for later retrieval. Pyvnc2swf provides several methods for archival. As Poohbear had minimal CPU/Memory, we opted for raw dumps to a VNC file. A beefier system could allow for straight dumps to a compressed SWF file.

TightVNC setup

tightvncsetup.jpg

After installing TightVNC, configure the helper application, including password and allowing for local loopback connections. Once you’ve used the helper application, disable it from start-up. You don’t want it to show up on the taskbar or it may give the recording away.

Pyvnc2swf

The real work comes from pycnc2swf, which we will need to launch from a batch file. The batch file provides an easy way for to randomize the output files and it can be spawned from a helper service. The helper service, srvany.exe, is a program that allows regular Windows applications to be deployed as a service in Windows. Once your batch file is defined, you can follow these instructions to setup the file to launch at start-up time. As part of the process of defining a service, you’ll want to make sure that the name you give it sounds kinda Microsoftian, like “Windows Image Capture Service.” In our video, when the technician looks through the service names, he passes right over it.

Here is a copy of what our pyvnc2swf launching batch file looked like:

pyvncswf.jpg

(Note: The second line is wrapped)

As referenced in the batch file, you’ll need to set up an empty file of your choosing so that pyvnc2swf knows what password to log into VNC with. The file we chose, password.txt, contains nothing but the password on its own line. The %RANDOM% parameter guarantees that pyvnc2swf won’t accidentally overwrite its own files when it is booting up a second or third time. Feel free to substitute your own variable, like %TIME%.

After everything has been set up, verify that your custom service is set to “Automatic”. If the instructions have been followed correctly, then every subsequent reboot of your PC should immediately start recording the contents of the desktop to a directory you’ve defined on the system. You can later retrieve these files and use the pyvnc2swf “edit” utility to convert that file to your specific needs.

PREVIOUSLY: VIDEO: Consumerist Catches Geek Squad Stealing Porn From Customer’s Computer