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Where I'm currently working there is a policy where various assets (including laptops) have to be cable locked and in the tech support department we have so many transient assets it's becoming unfeasible to manage all the keys. I need a new system and perhaps purchase equipment.

The problem is it's the nature of the department to take an asset or collection of assets, for example a fleet of new laptops, for a couple days. It becomes really hard keeping track of where the keys for the particular laptops go and if there's a change such as the laptops wont be going out for another week then it's easy to forget where the keys are. As far as I can tell there's no way to identify a particular key with a cable lock. The keys have numbers on them but the locks do not.

What I'm trying to do is keep the keys in a particular drawer of my desk. This hasn't been working well. I already have key chain for keys to shared cabinets and I'm thinking of getting a key chain to keep keys for cables locks on temporary assets. Also someone suggested getting a labeling machine to put labels on the cable locks, though I'm not sure how this would help.

Any suggestions? Things are getting really bad.

EDIT: all cable locks are supposed to have two keys (though this isn't always the case). What should I do with the second one?

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Put the key inside a ziplock baggie and tape it next to the lock. This is what I do with screws that go with a particular piece of hardware that I don't want to lose! ;) – Darth Android Jun 24 '13 at 20:40
up vote 5 down vote accepted

You need a key cabinet. You've probably seen them behind the counter at car dealers, car rental agencies, service stations with garages attached, etc. etc. I've seen server rooms which had one as it was a good central location for various office keys. Add some disposable key tags so you'll know which key goes with which lock for the duration of their stay. If tagging both is a problem, you can also get some of those little colored dot stickers to use to mark which lock goes with which key.

You can usually leave the cabinet itself unlocked during the day, not lock after each access, if there are people in the office and it's reasonably controlled.

Another alternative is to bag incoming keys & locks with a label to hand back out when the device leaves - use your own (static, unchanging) locks to secure devices while they're in your care. That way you're still keeping track of extra keys, but they're your extra keys, which can make it easier.

If you have two keys... keep them together and let the next guy worry about what to do with the spare :)

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buy a key box like this: Then you only have to keep track of the key to the box.

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