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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My employer is very concerned about spread of the COVID-19 virus. So they are currently testing a remote system with virtual private network before they send us home to work.


I'm not thrilled about using my own desktop PC for work, for reasons of privacy and wear and tear on personal equipment. My PC has dual boot since I have a standard hard drive and a solid state drive.


You might say I should just be happy that I am healthy with a job. Well, I am. But it is my only PC and it might be my only link to the outside world some day.



I figure on dedicating the hard drive for work related stuff and using the solid state drive for personal. Will an IT administrator somehow be able to access my personal solid state drive while I am using the other hard drive for work related?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That was my mistake in telling them I owned a PC like my other co-workers. They came around and asked. But I also told them I don't use Windows and I don't have a monthly Internet plan. Which is true. So they are looking into that. I suspect a few people will use their PC's for awhile and then just say their PC 'broke'
 

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I figure on dedicating the hard drive for work related stuff and using the solid state drive for personal. Will an IT administrator somehow be able to access my personal solid state drive while I am using the other hard drive for work related?
Depends on how your machine was set up and if your employer can log in remotely/monitor.

You can set permissions on all the critical folders of the ssd so only the os/login on that drive can access. May require a professional version of windows to do it.
 

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Since you have two drives, you can put all of your personal files on one drive and your work files on the other.

This isn't a foolproof solution but you can turn off "Sharing" on your personal drive.

If nothing else, you can unplug your personal drive until you are done with work and you log out of the VPN.
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Your company IT folks would to be far too busy dealing with having a bunch of non-corporate computers connecting to their network to have time spying on what you have on your computer. The idea of having a possibly virus-laden home computer connect to a corporate network gives me shivers. I hope that any company that I own stock in isn’t doing that.

Since presumably you have a work computer, are you sure that they are not testing a remote control system that would allow you to sit at your home computer and run your work computer as if you were sitting there? That is very easy to do and involves little risk of viruses on home computers getting onto the corporate network and no ability for the company IT folks to see what is on your computer.

Chris
 

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I'm not thrilled about using my own desktop PC for work........
I predict you will be after a couple of weeks.

A 5 step, 15 second commute to work. No dress code. Nobody walking in while you are concentrating on something and asking "could you please...."

I find the disappearance of interruptions as a huge productivity improver.

This computer has been on basically 24/7 since 2009. There is no wear and tear on a computer from doing calculations. Markings on my keyboard are starting to lose some ink, but my keyboard is from maybe 2005. Although true that hard-drives have a finite lifespan. Move the porm to a password protected folder.
 

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I worked from home for a long time. And on the road. Granted it was not my personal PC all the time, but it was at first.

As someone who worked in the IT area, they are not concerned about what is on your personal space. Heck, we were not really concerned with you watching **** at work. Unless of course you downloaded it then we got miffed. Wasting a company resource.

We worry more about what virus and other stuff you could bring in to our network. And what you do bring on your flash drive that you plug in.

There is no wear and tear on your personal computer Just remember to turn it off and shut down periodically. And close your browsers at least twice a day. If you are running an SSD, just do a restart with everything open and they should reopen once it restarts.
 

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I would ask for a computer from work. What about the computer you use at work? Why not take that home? Do they expect you to leave their computer behind and use your own?
If I could not get a computer from work and faced lay-off without having one, I would buy a cheap reconditioned computer from Amazon. I would rather spend a day or two of pay than be out of work.
 

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1. i stopped using HDDs as boot drives a long time ago. not worried about "wear and tear". I have had my monster PC running for years continuously with no signs of issues.

2. if you are concerned, spin up a VM and do all your work stuff from there. problem solved.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Let me answer your questions.


They sent some employees home to work Friday to test a remote system with VPN and software. I believe it's the setup Chris616 described in his response where we sit at our home PC as if we were at work. They say we have to leave our work PC turned on (but not logged on to make this work).


We have thin clients in our cubicles at work with dual monitors.I was told in confidence that they are afraid we'll 'break' the equipment if we take it home. I was also told they might change their mind and let us take the equipment home. If we don't operate with dual monitors, it will be difficult to do our jobs with all the applications we use



I do believe running a PC 8 hours a day, every day, does take its toll. I've seen work computers start to have problems in 2 years and get replaced. I'll have to wait till tonight to respond after work
 

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There are a number of approaches. Remotely controlling a work machine is technically simple, although there may be bandwidth issues depending on the type of work.

Where I'd draw the line, personally, is if they wanted to start installing management software on my home machine to essentially make it like a work machine. By that I mean, to control what's installed. They're going to err on the side of caution, and load your machine up with monitoring and restricting software. As was mentioned, they're not going to be getting their jollies spying on you, but they are perfectly happy to kill the performance of your machine to protect their network and servers from you.

As an aside, I never installed dual monitors on my work computer, and never asked for the newest hardware. I saw so many IT people, especially developers, always demanding the latest and greatest hardware. They'd develop things no end user could use, and they'd be unable to work from anywhere but their own desk. If you learn to live with one monitor and a slower computer, you can easily work from anywhere, be it another office or home.
 

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The original packaging is long gone, so a certain percentage of monitors (and other equipment) will be damaged during transport if employees take them home, hence the reluctance. Dropping from a dual monitor setup down to a single will slightly affect your productivity, but not nearly as much as all the distractions available at home if you lack discipline.

The incremental cost to you in “wear and tear” on your personal computer is so insignificant it would be outweighed by just the cost of fuel in a short commute, not to mention a dozen other things that you’ll be saving money on by working from home. But really, it’s time to think about the big picture of why your company is doing this.

Chris
 

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Our son-in-law is a network IT manager for an organization. The organization decided to ensure business continuity by having key personnel work for home. Their main saving grace was a backroom full of old laptops they had not gotten around to disposing. The S-i-L and his team spent a frantic week of refurbishing and reloading. Normally he doesn't work from home but is permanently on-call for problems their help desk can't solve. They live in an area of limited band width so he tethers his phone (paid for by the company) to his computer.


Post retirement, I had a contract gig where they gave me a laptop, phone and car and told me to go forth and work. We were on dial up at the time and the VPN worked fine - slowly but it worked.
 

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Let me answer your questions.


They sent some employees home to work Friday to test a remote system with VPN and software. I believe it's the setup Chris616 described in his response where we sit at our home PC as if we were at work. They say we have to leave our work PC turned on (but not logged on to make this work).


We have thin clients in our cubicles at work with dual monitors.I was told in confidence that they are afraid we'll 'break' the equipment if we take it home. I was also told they might change their mind and let us take the equipment home. If we don't operate with dual monitors, it will be difficult to do our jobs with all the applications we use



I do believe running a PC 8 hours a day, every day, does take its toll. I've seen work computers start to have problems in 2 years and get replaced. I'll have to wait till tonight to respond after work
I use my computer for heavy computational work (CPU/GPUs loaded up to 80% load+ 24/7/365), and I burn up a $200-300 GPU every few years. usually something pops and it dies. more often it gets too slow before it dies and is replaced.

I've never lost a CPU to failure/instability.

for RDP/thin client work you could use the cheapest computer money can buy and it'd be overkill.
 

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You do not have to spend the money to commute in to work or to buy your lunch at a restaurant and you are whining about wear and tear on your computer? The only thing that will wear out sooner is the keyboard and that can be replaced for $30.

You should be glad that your employer is doing what they can to keep the business going and continue to pay their employees. Be glad you don't work for a company like Wal-Mart.
 

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I use my computer for heavy computational work (CPU/GPUs loaded up to 80% load+ 24/7/365), and I burn up a $200-300 GPU every few years. usually something pops and it dies. more often it gets too slow before it dies and is replaced.
I wonder if the videos cards aren't well cooled or have poor quality power regulation components.

Solid state electronics, especially processors themselves should last decades even under full load.
 

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I wonder if the videos cards aren't well cooled or have poor quality power regulation components.

Solid state electronics, especially processors themselves should last decades even under full load.
Most recently I lost my 7970 GHz edition - I came to the room and no screen ouput. I assume something on the card died but no visible signs/hints of magic smoke release. an RX 580 8GB replaced it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Since I run Linux at home, the IT people won't let me use that with their remote system. So the director said I will need to work in the office if they don't scrape up a spare laptop for me to telecommute with. So we can close out this discussion to avoid wasting anyone's time.Thanks.
 
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