Spiceworks any good?

NetworkingStudentNetworkingStudent Member Posts: 1,407 ■■■■■■■■□□
Hello I’m looking for free network planning and management software for an organization that I’m volunteering. The organization runs server 2003, and from what they told me have 10 computers. Any good network mapping, planning, layout tools? I’m looking for something that would help layout the network and show how everything connects.
I say spiceworks, but not too sure if this would be a good choice, anyone have any experience with it? Sounds like it comes with alot of ads
Free Network Monitoring Software | Spiceworks Free Network Management Software
Also, is Viso a good network mapping/ layout tool?
Any good free tools for monitoring bandwidth usage?
When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened."

--Alexander Graham Bell,
American inventor


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    tbgree00tbgree00 Member Posts: 553 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Spiceworks is pretty cool and would be pretty perfect for you. It creates network maps and lets you track where the computers are. It also keeps inventory of your machines, networking equipment, and network connected printers. I get emails when toner supplies are running low.

    I think the coolest aspect is a gui interface to remotely shut down running processes on a machine. It stops me from having to go bring up task manager and do it locally.

    There are ads but they never really bother me.
    I finally started that blog - www.thomgreene.com
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    veritas_libertasveritas_libertas Member Posts: 5,746 ■■■■■■■■■■
    The RDP option is pretty sweet as well. You can click on a PC and it automatically brings up an RDP connection.
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    tengutengu Member Posts: 13 ■□□□□□□□□□
    Spiceworks is pretty nice. Let me chime in with some issues though. The computer you host SpiceWorks on is going to get slow especially if someone initiates a scan. Those scans are very resource intensive. Second, when it starts getting the installed software, there might be duplicates or outdated items reported. For instance: You upgraded a PC from Office 2000, to XP and then eventually to 2007. It will report all those pieces still installed. It sometimes will report Office XP Pro and Access as two different pieces of software and the such. If you have ever tried to script getting installed software, you know this is a nightmare. You can search the MSI database (will not grab other installers), the Program Files folder manually, or Look in the HKEY Uninstaller path. All of these have drawbacks and it's hard to get an accurate account of what is installed on a remote computer.

    Nagios is another good, free tool. Belarc is great as well for individual machines. Check them out and compare. Spiceworks, like any software, has it's pro's and con's.
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