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Unlocking Laptops for Home Use

Novell Cool Solutions: Tip
By Kelly Karpenko

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Posted: 8 Nov 2000

Current version: ZENworks for Desktops 3

We just came up with a cool way to lock down our laptops while users are in the office and figured we'd share it in case any one out there may find it helpful. Basically we have a standard, locked-down desktop for all our users in the office. The main problem before was that on a laptop, if we locked you down in the office you were fine because you could run NAL, but when you went home, the lockdown and lack of NAL rendered the laptop useless. So we had to leave the laptops unlocked. This presented several problems for us - the main one being the MSOffice toolbar. It was in a lot of the laptop's startup folders and causing major problems with force-run distributions via NAL.

What we came up with are two .inf files - lock2.inf and unlock3.inf - that are basically registry-entry equivalents of the desktop policies that we have for the desktop users. We created a 95 User Policy that has two custom actions - Lock for In Office and Unlock for Home. They use the c:\windows\rundll32.exe setupx, InstallHInfSection RunIt 0 lock2.inf and unlock3.inf commands respectively. This works perfectly for us because now all the users' desktops are the same when they are in the office (we set a custom Start Menu, Programs and Startup Folder too, so that solves the Office toolbar issue), but the users are still able to have full functionality when they are home. Hope this helps!

If you have any questions you may contact Kelly at

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