25 July 2011

What you need to know about Undercover on Lion

Apple released Lion 5 days ago and many of our users have already upgraded their Macs or are planning to do so soon. In this post, we would like to address some common questions and misconceptions about Undercover on Lion.

Reinstalling on Lion
We recommend all our users to download Undercover 4.5 and run the installer, even if Undercover has been installed previously. This will make sure you are running the very latest version. Reinstalling Undercover on a Mac will not use additional license seats if you have a household or site license.

FileVault 2
With OS X Lion comes FileVault 2, an update of Apple's data encryption program. In FileVault 2 a Mac cannot boot unless an admin password is entered. Therefore, third party apps such as Undercover (and Undercover copy-cats) cannot run. Basically in OS X Lion, you must choose between using FileVault 2 or having the chance to recover your Mac using Undercover. We are sorry to have to write this, but this is how Apple designed FileVault 2. If you want to continue using Undercover and data encryption is important to you, there are many other file encryption apps available.

Location menu item
In Lion, a new location menu is present in the upper right corner of the menubar (the arrow icon). This menu lists all apps that have accessed your location in the last 24 hours. Since Undercover uses location, it will show up there as well (under the uclocator name). If you think this menu gives a potential thief too much information, you can easily remove the menu item: drag the com.apple.locationmenu.plist file in /System/Library/LaunchAgents/ out of the LaunchAgents folder. You can always bring the menu item back by moving the plist file back to its folder.

Firmware password
Setting a firmware password will prevent thieves from formatting your startup disk, as the password is needed to boot from another disk than your default startup disk. That's why we recommend to set a firmware password when using Undercover. You can access the firmware password in Lion by booting from the recovery partition.

Update: added information about the firmware utility on the Lion recovery partition. Thanks to everyone who pointed this out.

Update 2: corrected information on FileVault 2

24 July 2011

Undercover tracks MacBook Air in Hampshire, UK

Undercover helps recovering another MacBook Air in the UK. Our favorite quote from the story:
When officers turned up at the thief's home in New Milton, Hampshire, 100 miles away, they were even able to match the wallpaper in his living room with that in the background of the photograph.

Read the entire story in the Daily Mail.

19 July 2011

ZipRage thinks Witness is hot

ZipRage just reviewed Witness: "I could see it being a fantastic option for those of you living in a dorm room". Read the review...

15 July 2011

Witness 1.2 ready for Lion

After releasing Undercover 4.5 two weeks ago, we are now completing our Lion compatibility lineup with Witness 1.2. Besides providing full compatibility with Lion, Witness fixes a couple of other issues. We recommend all our Witness users to upgrade to version 1.2. Simply download the installer from the Witness website and run it.

UPDATE: Some users are reporting issues with alarm activation on Lion. We are looking into these issues, and we will release a fix as soon as possible.

08 July 2011

First Witness success story

Only about three months after its introduction, Witness managed to witness its first theft. It snapped pictures of an iPad theft at a hospital in Virginia, US. Thanks to Witness, our customer now has his iPad back, and the police have arrested the thief who had previously stolen money at the same the hospital. Read the entire story...