Parents have several options to monitor their children's Internet usage. The most effective method is to be there when the children use the Internet. This is however not always possible. Software programs try to fill this gap that can be used to control and monitor what children do and cannot do on the Internet. These parental control software programs are only as effective if the child is not able to overcome them.
Auto Screenshot is a portable software program that falls into the parental control software category. It can be used to monitor users on a computer system. More precisely: It can be used to take interval screenshots of a user's desktop whenever the user accesses the computer system.
The tri-lingual software program offers a few options to configure the process. The user - which in this case should be one of the parents or guardians - can configure the delay between screenshots in seconds and the number of screenshots that should be kept on the computer system. It is furthermore possible to set the download directory, delete duplicate screenshots and to compress images to save space on the hard drive.
The process of the parental control software is visible in the task manager. This means the software can only be effective on user accounts without administrative rights. Auto Screenshot (via To The PC) is available at the developer's website.
Update: A less drastic option to control the computer usage of children and minors in a household is the built-in parental control feature of the Windows operating system. This works best if every user of the computer has a unique user account. It is then possible to restrict access to specific times, block specific programs or games among other things.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.