Some questions about npc's

So yesterday just figured out that npc’s could do MUCH more than just hand out a mission. All this time and I didnt know npc’s could do more than handing out a mission from the starting npc in the beginning bunker. Now I found out they can come with you, help you kill stuff, loot stuff, carry stuff and all kinds of things. It feels like the game just opened WAY up now. I cant believe I missed that all h\this time. But I have some questions.
I had the starting npc come with me into town to help kill stuff. It went great. I didnt change any of his settings. So he didnt loot stuff but he would pulp the bodies. Anyways, last night, I went back to my bunker base and I told him to guard the base as I had a ton of items all over the floor, and somewhere in the npc’s text it said something about other npc’s could come and steal my stuff. I saved and turned the game off. I log in today and my floor was missing a TON of items and the npc was wearing a sheet that he wasnt wearing last night. I check the npc’s items, and he is now carrying a TON of the items that I had stored on the bunker floor.
Is there a way to prevent that from happening? Also I noticed while travelling that my npc will say stuff about being hungry, thirsty or tired. Do I have to feed/water and put to bed mt npc? And I had one big question too.
I remember a year ago or more, you could set dynamic npc spawn rates in the option and you could run into npc’s running around the game world as you were playing. They would get into fights with zombies and everything. But then the devs made a change to it all and I stopped seeing those npc’s, even when I put the spawn rate up.
I remember seeing them give an explanation about it, saying that the npc’s still spawned but that now they would immediately run for certain safe areas or something. Anyways, does anyone know anything about the dynamic npc’s and if they still work and how can I have them still be a part of the game? Can they or do they still move around the game world?

EDIT:Damn when I make the post here, I use paragraphs, but when I hit the submit post button, it posts it but it takes my paragraphs away. Sorry guys. I tried.

If you just want to prevent them from picking stuff up in your bunker, open the Zone manager (default: SHIFT+Y), [A]dd a new zone, select No NPC Pickup, name it (optionally), select one corner of your bunker, then move the cursor over to select the opposite corner. Press ESC to exit the Zone manager and make sure you save it.

If you don’t want them to pick up anything, talk to them, select b: I want to set some miscellaneous rules. and a: Don't pick up items.

At world generation, there should have been a Disable NPC Needs mods active by default.
If you removed that mod (or it somehow got overwritten by an other mod you chose), than yes, you need to provide food and water (or other beverages) to your NPC (give it to them to “hold on” or in a trade, they don’t need to be spoonfed) and a chance to sleep.
If you have a faction camp and your NPC(s) are there, they will take the food automatically from the defined stockpile.

There was a bug with NPC and nested containers which prevented them from eating and drinking and I don’t know if it was fixed by now, but I’d assume so.

Unless that changed, yes, randomly generated NPCs are still a thing (given that you didn’t set the Random NPC spawn time to 0) and you may find them on your travels (at “save” locations).
Once they found a place, they stay put and do not move around anymore, according to this post, which - to my knowlege - is still up to date.

It just occured to me: do NPCs use same nutrition/digestion system as player? If yes it means they can die from drinking too much… right?

I think the answer is yes and no…:
I believe they use the same digestion system, but I also think they stop drinking if it would kill them (or can’t get alcohol poisoning in the first place, if it’s that what you’re… “concerned” with).

Might be something to give a try…

So I had the npc that started in my bunker come with me and I found a plane crash. He helped me clear the area and after I filled up on loot we went back to the bunker to rest. He was kinda hurt, so I bandaged him up and we rested. He was tired so I let him sleep. When he woke up, I told him to guard the bunker. He said he would. I went back to the crash site to loot more and got jumped by more zombies. I ran back to the bunker for help, but that cowardly fool seems to be gone. Does anyone know where he may have gone and why he left when I told him to guard the bunker?

EDIT:Ok nevermind. I found him on the way to the crash site…weirdo.

If you tell an NPC to guard, it will follow any enemies it sees (and unseen noises) and might even leave the area.
They may also panic and flee if their enemies overpower them.

Usually you can spot them easily on the [m]ap.