Saturday, June 26, 2010

Top 5 Pranks

We're going to take a step away from the serious topics, and dive into some fun experiences I've had with very simple code. Here are the top 5 most memorable computer pranks I've played on friends, family, coworkers, and other students.  All of these are for Windows computers.

1) Fake Desktop.

Take a screenshot of their desktop, set the image as their background, and hide the the start bar and remove all the icons on their desktop. The result is a desktop that looks exactly the same as before, but nothing can be clicked on.

2) Swap the mouse buttons.

This can be done either through the mouse option in the control pannel or through the registry.

For the registry, you can save the following as a .reg file and run it:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Mouse]

3) Fun with VB Script

Save the following as c:\prank.vbs:
while( true)
If MsgBox(" is Awesome",vbYesNo) = vbYes Then
WScript.sleep 90000
End If

Then, save the following as prank.reg:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

and run prank.reg (double click on it).
Should be good fun... every 90 seconds it'll prompt them to confirm you are awesome, and will start up when they restart.

4) The browser trainer.

Ocassionally you have the friend that still uses internet explorer. This little script will help train him to use a better browser.

save the following as a .vbs file and run it.
dim obj
set obj = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
if obj.AppActivate("Internet Explorer") then
MsgBox("Access denied, please use a better browser!")
end if 


This can be set to start on boot the same as #3.

5) Remote Control

While I wrote my own application to do this which was a little more undetectable when finding an excuse to learn socket programing(but only allowed me to send button and mouse events and didn't display what they were doing), this can be easily done through free tools like VNC. Simpley install VNC, connect to it from a remote computer and you'll be able to interrupt what they're doing. Maybe slightly move the mouse so they miss click, or type a random key from time to time. Regardless, it's enough to make anyone go insane who doesn't catch on to VNC running in the background.

Lastly, a quick tip for executing some of these pranks. Often, computers in computer labs have pretty strict security settings and won't allow you to easily execute some of these pranks. In many cases, you can open Internet Explorer > File > Open > Browse > Right click > new file > make a new file of the type you need > right click the new file you made> edit > enter the code > save and close > right click the file from the open dialog box > open/run

Many times the windows dialog box still has full access to do everything you need, to save and execute files.

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