Going with the flow
Network monitoring developer NetScout has brought the price of its nGenius Flow Recorder software down to around $4500 per port in order to reach enterprise workgroups. The software performs extended packet trace recording and analysis, and is intended to help trouble-shoot intermittent or long-term problems.

The company said it has also enhanced the software's analysis capabilities, adding data mining and data export features plus the ability to decode more packet types, such as HTTPS. It said the four and eight-port flow recorders are based on a multi-CPU appliance runnning hardened Linux software, and can be attached directly to a LAN or WAN or via an nGenius probe.

Assets in storage
Neon Software is to update its LANsurveyor tool with a number of features aimed at improving its ability to do software asset reporting. Chief among these is support for storing asset data in a repository, based on Microsoft SQL Database Engine or SQL Server, so even offline nodes can be included in reports.

Also new in LANsurveyor 9.5 will be the ability to use CDP (Cisco Discovery Protocol) and LLDP (Link Layer Discovery Protocol) for network discovery, enhancements to the Visio export function, a smart-truncation capability for really long switch port names, support for Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA) 2.0, and tooltips for network connectors shown on a LANsurveyor map.

Watching the surfers
Internet activity can be audited across a network, allowing admins to which websites are being visited and which search engines used, claimed Layton Technology as it announced a monitoring and reporting tool called ObsurferPro. The software, which costs $295 for 50 PCs, is a packet sniffer and analyser optimised to interpret HTTP traffic.

Layton's president and CEO Robert Ward said ObsurferPro does not block web access, but could for example be used with keyword detection and a blacklist of banned sites to help develop and monitor Internet usage policies, as well as helping admins to understand Internet usage patterns.

"While we aren't interested in taking the 'Big Brother' approach to monitoring an employee's every move, we do recognise the inherent value in detecting patterns involving the misappropriation of network and corporate resources," commented Ken Stewart, network administrator at Nelson Publishing and an early user of ObsurferPro.

Permission to modify
Administrators with lots of Windows servers to manage will appreciate the help of ScriptLogic's Security Explorer 5.0, the company claims. It said the software enables you to search, modify, migrate, export, backup and restore permissions on Windows NT, 2000 and 2003 servers, carrying out even quite complex tasks in a few clicks. The software is multi-threaded too, so you can do more than one operation at a time.

With version 5.0, ScriptLogic said it has added the ability to manage printer permissions, as well improving its ability to log and report its work for compliance purposes; for example, when removing permissions from dead accounts. The company added that Security Explorer is available as a 30-day free evaluation.