You may want to monitor your home computer if you want to make sure your kids are doing their homework while you’re out of the house; or if you want to make sure they’re not visiting adult sites while you’re away. On the other hand, you may be in charge of a small office and want to monitor certain employees computers for similar reasons. There are a number of reasons for wanting to monitor a computer and there’s a range of software to help.
Computer Monitoring Software comes in a variety of types, from standard home monitoring software, to employee and classroom monitoring software, and all of which have a slightly different set of features to suit the environment, but all in all they will do the same think: monitor the computer stealthily and report on the results.
Standard home monitoring software is available from developers as a direct download from the internet; and once installed will be completely hidden from all users. Even the most technical of kids won’t see any sign of the software, so everything they do will be monitored without their knowledge. You can open the software by typing a combination of keys that only you know (usually control+alt+something) and a password. This will start up the user interface so you can look through the logs.
The logs (depending on the developer) will usually be arranged by the type of action that has been monitored. You’ll also be able to see screen shots that are taken periodically, or when a specific action is take, for example a new web page being opened. You’ll usually be able to look through reports of any document/file activity, any applications used, any websites visited and anything typed into any of these (passwords and emails included). All of this will be logged with times and dates, along with items like anything printed or copy and pasted.
Of course, different developers will have different features and some software will work completely differently to others. Some for example will have great remote reporting functionality, so that you can look through the logs via email or internet while on the move, and others will have extra features like web cam or GPS monitoring. Most will have a free trial so that you can test the water before taking the plunge.