Hack 15 Top Five Tools

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Here's one IT professional's take on five third-party tools for Windows 2000 every system administrator should have.

There can be no doubt that with every release of Microsoft's operating system the need for third-party utilities becomes less and less. One major complaint about NT was its lack of disk quotas, something Unix has included since day one. A number of companies noticed this oversight and produced a product that did the trick. The release of Windows 2000 saw disk quotas become part of the OS, thus making the need to purchase this type of software an irrelevance for the majority of companies.

Whether you agree with Microsoft's policy of continually adding features to its products that were once available only from other sources is one for debate. But in my role as a network administrator, I still find a need to seek out additional software to help make my job a lot easier. I'm sure everyone has their favorite must-have utilities, but these are my top five must-have add-on products for Windows 2000.

Server Monitor Lite

Server Monitor Lite is an invaluable monitoring product that allows you to monitor your servers centrally and get notified if a problem occurs. I use this utility to ping all my servers periodically, watch for low disk space, keep an eye on critical services, and make sure the company intranet is still accessible for my users. For more information, see http://www.purenetworking.net/Products/ServerMonitor/ServerMonitor.htm.

Lost Password Recovery

Have you inherited systems for which nobody knows the local administrator password, or do you have users that need access to Word, Excel, or Access documents that are password-protected and nobody knows the password? Well, this handy little product will save the day. It lets you reset the password on a huge array of systems. For more information, see http://www.lostpassword.com.

Data Replicator

Do you need to copy files from one system to another on a regular basis? Data Replicator makes this job much easier?it allows you to watch files or folders for changes, and then replicate them to another location. You can copy files across a LAN, WAN, or via FTP, which makes Data Replicator a great alternative to traditional backup software. For more information, see http://www.purenetworking.net/Products/DataReplicator/DataReplicator.htm.

Virtual Network Computing (VNC)

Take control of your remote servers from the comfort of your desk. VNC lets you control Windows, Unix, and Mac machines. For more information, see http://www.realvnc.com.

Network View

With this handy tool, you'll never need to draw out your network. It automatically generates a network diagram for you within minutes. For more information, see http://www.networkview.com.

?Janet Ryding