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Are there any power strips or products designed to defend against a "cleaning lady" attack (cleaning crew is vacuuming the floor and bumps the power strip switch, turning off all the connected equipment)?

I have some curious felines in my house that always seem to work their way behind my desk and accidentally step on the power strip switch.

Is there some sort of switch cover I can get, or a power strip that is less susceptible to this kind of problem?

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4  
tape the switch. –  MDMarra Jan 17 '12 at 20:52
    
Mount the strip to the desk. seriously? –  Paul Ackerman Jan 17 '12 at 20:54
    
diy.stackexchange.com –  Jeff Ferland Jan 17 '12 at 20:56
    
Thank you for the feedback, but I can't accept any one of these answers unless they are put in an actual answer :) –  naomik Jan 17 '12 at 21:03
    
@voretaq7 Closed, Reopened, Closed again, Reopened again. And now I can't vote to close again because "You have already voted to close this question" ಠ_ಠ –  Chris S Jan 17 '12 at 23:35

6 Answers 6

up vote 4 down vote accepted

One cheap way is to get yourself a dozen or so 9-12" zip-ties.

  • Use a staple-gun to place a 2-3 zip-ties on the underside/back of your desk. Place a couple stables spaced to the the width of your power strip.
    • Look at your power strip to get the spacing right.
  • Put the power-strip in place and then close the zip-tie.

zip tie

A bit neater is to simply get a few cable mount rings. If get 5-6 and space these out about every 8-12" then you can collect a large number of cables to the under-side of your desk. This should make the cables/power strips immune from vacuums and so on.

cable rings

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3  
+1 for cable management options. (though I would suggest Velcro straps (cut thinly) over zip ties. –  voretaq7 Jan 17 '12 at 21:24
    
Those too. I just mentioned zip-ties and staples because it is really cheap. You could do the entire project for less then a $1. Velcro would be a little more expensive. –  Zoredache Jan 17 '12 at 21:30

I always duct tape a quarter over the power button to keep the cats from switching it off.

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That could get expensive after a while. –  Michael Hampton Jul 28 '12 at 22:21
    
I've been recycling the same quarter for the last 10 years! Very cheap compared to the other options! Simple, too! –  Janet Jul 29 '12 at 5:42
    
I have a lot of power strips. :) –  Michael Hampton Jul 29 '12 at 5:43
1  
Better switch to goldfish. –  Janet Jul 29 '12 at 5:50
    
On some power strips the power switch is also the circuit breaker. Putting tape and/or coinage on such setups is a fire hazard. –  rnxrx Jul 31 '12 at 1:05

Hot-glue is the very best to fixate a power plug. Just be careful that it won't reach the contacts.

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Aside from completely replacing your power strip (with one that has a key switch), try a switch cover.

That particular site is where we got AC panel covers at my last job, but there are other places that probably have small versions suitable for power strips.

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You could use a master/slave power distributor. Put your PC/whatever your main device is into the master-slot, all other (secondary) devices to the slave-slots. If you turn on the device on the master-slot all other slots get power, too (and vice versa).

This works without a manual switch and should solve your problem.

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This stops the cat from walking on the power switch how exactly?? –  Chris S Jan 17 '12 at 21:31
    
@ChrisS well - there is no switch to step on. –  Nils Jan 17 '12 at 21:41

I always just open up the power strip and solder the two leads on the power switch together. I generally make a notation on the side of the power strip that the switch has been disabled.

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That sounds safe... –  Chris S Jan 17 '12 at 21:30
1  
I can't think of any specific reason it's not safe, but I admit, I've always had a slightly uneasy feeling about it. –  David Schwartz Jan 17 '12 at 21:31
    
It's safe if (1) you know what you're doing, and (2) you're not an idiot and doing it on live power. Given the choice I'd epoxy the switch in the "on" position instead: Nearly equal permanence, and I don't have to unscrew anything :) –  voretaq7 Jan 18 '12 at 0:25
    
@voretaq7: I didn't think of that. I like that better. It's easier, safer, and in the unlikely chance of some bizarre emergency, it makes it much more obvious that trying to flip the switch will not cut power. –  David Schwartz Jan 18 '12 at 0:47

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