Ask LH: Can I Set A Sometimes Password On My Media Centre?

Dear Lifehacker, I have a Windows 8/Plex Media Centre PC that is always on but requires a password every time it is restarted. I don’t want to disable the password entirely in case it is stolen but having the password is inconvenient at home because I have to use the keyboard instead of my remote.

Is there any way to disable my password when connected to my home network but re-enable it if the PC was somewhere else? Something like Tasker on Android? Cheers, Password-Phobic

Dear PP

As far as we know, it’s not possible to remotely reactivate your media centre password in the event of theft. Is there any reason why you need to keep the password enabled? With the possible exception of photos and home movies, the data contained on media centres isn’t particularly sensitive or useful to thieves.

In any event, media centre reboots are not that frequent, so it shouldn’t really be too much of a hassle. If you’re paranoid about data loss, consider backing up to a NAS, or setting up a streaming media centre — you can read our comprehensive media streaming guide here. If our readers have any suggestions for PP, make sure to send them through!


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