Home How-To How to use your USB flash drive to lock your PC or...

How to use your USB flash drive to lock your PC or Laptop

Locking or unlocking your PC using a USB drive looks cool as well as more secure than standard login passwords for PC users. Because we all have a bunch of USB drives lying around our PC and they are not much use to us because we all have portable hard drives now. So, why not use these drives as a key to lock or unlock your PC?

1. Predator (Free | Windows)

Predator for Windows is the best tool for making your PC secure using a USB drive. Predator keeps on monitoring that is your USB drive is plugged in or not. If the Predator gets to know that the USB drive is ejected, it will lock the computer immediately. It will keep asking for the password repeatedly until you plug your USB back in.

Predator comes with lots of options to play with like screen darkness while password prompt, minimize all windows, read interval, and much more. Predator is a freeware with all the features working but only for non-commercial purposes, for commercial purposes you need to buy the license. The only drawback of the Predator is that it is only compatible with Windows.

Steps to use your USB drive as Key with Predator:

  1. Download and Install Predator on your PC.
  2. Run it on the desktop.
  3. Plugin the USB drive when prompted and click on OK.
  4. The predator will ask to set a primary password to lock your PC.
  5. After setting a password, the Predator will go to the system tray and start monitoring the USB you chose.

The Predator saves a file to the USB drive and doesn’t alter or damage any pre-saved files from the USB drive. And to keep working without any password prompt just keep your USB drive plugged in. Now whenever you eject your USB drive, the predator will ask you to insert the drive back again.

2. USB Lock (USD 3 | Mac)

Now comes a treat for Mac, USB Lock is the locker screen tool only for Mac and if you want it on your Mac, then you have to pay a little amount of $3 (the cost is low according to what it does). USB Locker has the same features and functionality as the Predator for Windows. The interface of the USB Lock is the most basic one with only two or three options.

Steps to lock your Mac using USB Lock:

  1. First, download and install the USB Lock on your Mac.
  2. Run USB dock.
  3. USB dock will ask you to insert your USB drive.
  4. Add a password to work with your USB drive to lock/unlock your PC.

Now your Mac will get locked at the same time you eject your USB drive.

3. Rohos Logon Key (Paid | Windows)

Rohos Logon Key is another paid tool to lock down your PC from other people; Rohos Logon Key also comes with more features but for that, you have to pay INR 1754. But if you are paying this amount, you’ll get some more goodies with it like 2-factor login, emergency login, and restriction to a computer which is based on the USB key.

Protect your PC using Rohos Logon Key:

  1. Your PC should be protected with a password first.
  2. Now download and install Rohos Logon Key.
  3. Launch it from your desktop.
  4. Plugin your USB drive which you want to use as a key.
  5. It will ask you for your PC’s current password.
  6. After filling in the password, click on “Setup USB Key” and your USB will now work as a key.
  7. Now whenever you want to login to your PC or unlock your desktop, just plug in your USB drive and see the magic.


Rohos Logon Key is not as useful as Predator because if anybody gets to know about your PC password, he can log into your PC without the USB drive. Rohos Logon Key should be used if you don’t want to type in your password again and again on the Windows login screen.