Product Information

PC-Duo

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June 09, 2005
SC Magazine Best Buy
Vendor:

Vector Networks

Product:

PC-Duo (Group Test: Auditing tools)

Website:

http://www.vector-networks.com

Price

$290 for 10 nodes

RATING BREAKDOWN

  • Features:
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  • Ease of Use:
    starstarstarstarstar
  • Performance:
    starstarstarstarstar
  • Documentation:
    starstarstarstarstar
  • Support:
    starstarstarstarstar
  • Value for Money:
    starstarstarstar
  • Overall Rating:
    starstarstarstarstar

QUICK READ

  • Strengths:

    Comprehensive functionality, clear manuals, user interface.

  • Weaknesses:

    Very little.

  • Verdict:

    A good, all-round auditing tool that is easy to use, yet provides all the essential functionality.

We evaluated a previous version of PC-Duo and were generally impressed with its intuitive interface and no-nonsense functions. We are pleased to report that the previous strengths – an attractive and intuitive interface – remain. The functionality has also been well considered and will be truly useful in a broad range of operational scenarios.

Throughout the range of modules, one gets the impression that a lot of good work has gone into this evolution of PC-Duo. This extends to the PDF format manuals supplied on the CD – seven documents in all, which are informative and well written.

PC-Duo works in the familiar fashion of a host console, interfacing with client PCs to gather data, distribute software, create hardware and software inventories and perform other tasks.

Of course, it may be that some PCs are not online at all times. The PC-Duo architecture accommodates this via an intermediate offline area, to which data can be pushed by the client PCs and later accessed via the main console, or scanned via a scheduling process.

Remote software installation and updates are catered for, as are groups for clients with similar characteristics or operational requirements. There is also integration with Active Directory, with the automatic creation of groups from organizational units.

It has a straightforward architecture, and PC-Duo should easily integrate into most operational scenarios.

For many, the primary benefit of using this type of software lies in the easy and fast analysis of both hardware and software assets across the enterprise, plus the ability to monitor where software is being used (or misused).

PC-Duo makes all this possible, with a comprehensive level of hardware and software detection, coupled to clear on-screen displays and a very useful reports facility. In addition, policies can be created to associate specific software with groups or individual clients.

PC-Duo includes diagnostic and helpdesk functionality, and much more. Suffice to say, this is an excellent suite of truly useful audit utilities that is fuss-free in use and which demands no more than a minimal learning curve on the part of the user.

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