Want to know if your computer was used while you were away? Do you have an important file or folder missing, or have you notice a change in Windows settings? Do you want to find who was there on your computer or due to any other reason? If yes then follow the steps below.
Difficulty level: Easy
How to find out when your computer was last used
In this tutorial, you will run a Windows component called Event Viewer. A utility that displays detailed information about significant events on your computer.
- Head to Start, click Run, type in the bar: eventvwr.msc and press Enter.
(Tip: Shortcut for Run is Windows Key +R)
- After pressing enter, you will see an Event Viewer window.
(Note: if you are using Windows Vista and UAC pops up, choose Continue).
- In the left pane, click on Windows Logs then Click on System.
- In the center pane, click the Date and Time column header to arrange the events in chronological order.
- After this, you can double click on any date and check out the event that occured.
- Scroll through the list and look for events that occurred during times you were away from your computer. Some events, such as those listed as “Automatic Updates” in the Task Category, were triggered on a schedule, so they don’t reliably indicate that another user was accessing your computer.
- Click any event to see more details in the bottom pane. In the General tab, the Source, Task Category and Descriptions sections help identify the event. When a system boots, it logs a “Kernel-General” source and is described as “The operating system started at system time…” If you didn’t boot your computer at that time, then someone must have.
Important tip: In the left pane, click again on System, click on Filter Current Log.., type the User (your Windows username) and click OK. Now you can only see a fair list of User-based events.
Image credit: DigitalTrends
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