General discussion

  • Creator
  • #2177847

    Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!


    by jsamuelson ·

    What do y’all use, how much does it cost and does it really work? What do you use for tracking Help Desk requests on a budget — and we’re not talking Heat or Remedy being in the budget!? Is there a better product for imaging than Norton Ghost? What do people use for server tools i.e. to notify Admins when something is badly wrong? Is there a good, solid, reliable product that can back up critical system files without imaging the entire hard drive to conserve on server storage space? What’s out there, and what do you recommend? I work in a healthcare environment so money is a definite issue — along with IT being widely regarded as a necessary if expensive evil. Thanks.

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  • Author
    • #3080221


      by bfilmfan ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Could look at TrackIt, which has a small Help Desk package.

      No, there really isn’t a better imaging package than Ghost in my opinion.

      What server operating systems are we discussing managing and backing up? There are a number of different methods and tools depending on the OS. Need more information to assist you.

      Also, recall that HIPAA comes into play with health care and you will have some special requirements to meet.

      • #3080173


        by jsamuelson ·

        In reply to Advice

        … we’ve considered Ghost however the price tag is considerably higher what with having to buy a license each time an image is deployed. For server management, we have 25 NT 2003 servers so it’s MS across the board in a SAN environment. For server utilities, what would you use for sending out a page or cel phone notifiation that something is down, for example? Or to diagnose the error codes. We’ve had a T1 line go down twice within the past month but errors on the server side didn’t exactly pinpoint the problem (if you catch that drift). Thank you again,


        • #3079957

          T-1 down

          by northbikerjr ·

          In reply to Thanks

          Okay j, here is the deal.
          T-1 going down is not good. Your provider should call you when it goes down if they are a good company. I would consider switching providers. I have had too many bad experiance with poor providers and T-1’s.

          We use ghost, yes the licensing model sucks now. When we first purchased ghost it was unlimited. There are other licensing issues in using ghost too. Really, you are not suppose to ghost oem software version of MS windows xp. You must have a full license. Of course this is crappy, but MS states it in the EULA.

          There is They might be a little cheaper. I don’t know, we are locked into ghost and I know it works well.

 Site license approx 395+195 for NT Event log monitoring. If you want http web monitor its another $195.File and directory monitoring $155. Check it out, it can email you, page you, pretty much do whatever you need. We tested many packages and found this one to be the cheapest and really easy to use and maintain. It is probably not the leading edge, but works great for us. We use it to monitor 7 servers plus Internet connections.

          Looking for a product to manage your workstations/assets.
          We use They were really the only SQL solution under 1K that I could find and their product works very well. There are a few hiccups with it, but it has worked great since we purchased. OF course they could have increased their licensing costs.

        • #3098688


          by pmidnite ·

          In reply to Thanks

          Have you looked at a program called “Servers Alive”? I use it to monitor connections and Servers. It is inexpensive and it just works.

      • #3098607

        Reply To: Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

        by mike ·

        In reply to Advice

        For helpdesk we use Track-it as well and it has a host of options and can scale or be small. Starts at about $700 and goes from there.

        For basic network monitoring I have heard good things about IPMonitor and Ipswitch WhatsUp products , again reasonably priced.

        For the imaging issue, not really sure of an alternative to ghost…

        • #3099589

          Track_It Question

          by support monkey ·

          In reply to Reply To: Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

          Wasn’t Track-It sold or is for sale? I rolled out Track-It at my last employer and it did wonders. We were a mid sized shop with a need for a replacement for Remedy. Track-It supplied us with a Knowegebase, Purchasing tool, HelpDesk Tool (its primary use) and a desktop Auditing tool. It was great, I only had to go to the well once! I’m now at a new job and I probably will go with Track-It again.

        • #3099474

          Track-It is now a Quicken product

          by arley.beyond ·

          In reply to Track_It Question

          BlueWater sold out to Quicken. So Track-It now comes from Quicken.

        • #3099918

          Quicken – Intuit

          by support monkey ·

          In reply to Track-It is now a Quicken product

          It’s actually for sale again from what I hear. it was Intuit that bought it from Blue Ocean, they own (Quicken and Quick books). I heard that Intuit was selling them again. I’m a little aprehensive to buy it now because of the instability of the company.

      • #3259164

        Here is my response….

        by thestonez ·

        In reply to Advice

        I like Acronis TrueImage better than Ghost and find it is more reliable (restorations on Ghost have been less than 100% reliable IMO). As for Help Desk software there is a litany of options. GWI, HEAT, HP’s Service Desk, Magic Solutions, etc. Just thought I’d chime in.

    • #3097196

      More Advice

      by rkuhn040172 ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      For smaller operations, I’ve used:

      and found it to work for HelpDesk software. But only for smaller operations.

      The free version is for 2 admins and 100 users (I think). After that, it costs but is still affordable.

    • #3098126

      Manage Engine

      by ijross74 ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!


      If you have 25PC’s or less ServiceDesk+ from is free. I also recommend getting hold of some PC Magazines as they have had Acronis Hard Drive Imaging app for free. Nlite is also very handy for creating custom unattended installs

      • #3097717

        Apps from magazine CD’s, Not wise.

        by feral ·

        In reply to Manage Engine

        I noticed that you suggested that it might be a good idea to obtain Acronis software off a magazine CD for free to use in your organisation.

        Just a word of warning, before you go suggesting that a user installs an application off a magazine CD.
        You need to be aware of the licencing issues involved, most magazines that include a full version of a software package are doing so because the vendor of that software has agreed to give the purchaser of that magazine a single user licence not so the reader can install that application on one pc for at home use.

        If you install one of these applications in a coporate network you will in all likelihood be leaving the business open to prosecution by the BSAA or some other organisation.
        Along with putting your job at risk and also the business itself, particularly if it is a small business that can barely afford to pay the fines it will incur.

    • #3098104

      This is our setup…

      by rogue leader ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      We use a product called Alchemy Eye (, $299 USD for server monitoring, along with the SMS plugin. We monitor essential services, such as Exchange, SQL, RPC etc. It’s able to use ICMP to determine if a server is responding and if not, sends an SMS, a NET SEND and an e-mail to nominated users. We’ve found it invaluable and has enabled us to respond to a failing server much faster than we would have done.

      We also use Microsoft SMS and MOM for server and desktop management and deployment – and they both give us an incredible amount of information. Costs are high – but worth it.

      To handle network monitoring, we use SolarWinds Engineer’s Edition ( $995 USD, again, not cheap (but not ridiculously expensive either!) but it allows us to pinpoint network problems very early. The only thing we’re missing right now is a desktop support tracking/support call logging type application, and I’ve not found one that comes close to my requirement. I think I may have to write one…

      Hope this helps!

      • #3098589

        Thanks Rogue,

        by jsamuelson ·

        In reply to This is our setup…

        I appreciate the practical feedback — this is great. re: Help Desk tracking software, we use an Excel spreadsheet that can’t be shared; it needs to be converted to Access but I’m completely inexperienced with customizing forms, designing buttons and dropdown menus etc. If you’d like to see what we use as a base, I’ll be happy to send what we have; it may or may not work for you.

        • #3098584

          Monitoring + custom tracking

          by rnickolaus ·

          In reply to Thanks Rogue,

          We use open source for our monitoring. Cacti, MRTG, and Nagios. It can do anything you want for the most part, but you may spend some time learning or hiring a consultant.

          If you need some help with creating your own solutions (such as the Access app you mentioned), you might try It is a way for you to specify smallish projects and have programmers bid on them. There tends to be fierce competition from abroad where the dollar means a little more than it does on US soil. There are also recent grads looking to build up their skills/portfolio.

      • #3099405


        by ijross74 ·

        In reply to This is our setup…

        If you are going to dev your own app:

        However, ServiceDesk+, is great.

      • #2856544

        Licensing and Support Costs for MS System Center

        by tahirawan ·

        In reply to This is our setup…

        Can someone give me an idea of microsoft system center licensing and support costs. I am looking at replacement of our current desktop management software and considering SC but not sure about the costs….also

        – does SC support vPro feature
        – does SC have Wake on Lan feature.



    • #3098071

      You have to look at ZenWorks

      by mdisbury ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      ZenWorks from Novell is THE best tool I have EVER come across!
      It does application deployment, patch management, Asset control / inventory both hardware and software for just about all platforms, it does reimaging and complete OS deployment. The cost is very reasonable in larger networks and it comes free with the Small Business version for under 5 licenses, what a great way to try it out..
      Guys, forget about the label, this is really a great tool.

    • #3098065


      by steve ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      For a Help Desk how about Resource Tracker –

      I have installed it several times and prefer to use it to Remedy or Vantive. Best of all it costs nothing.

      • #3098410

        Very nice…

        by 32bitswide ·

        In reply to RT

        I forgot about this one….very nice…

    • #3098056

      My tools

      by feral ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Hi mate 🙂
      I manage 3 teaching labs in an Active Directory Domain in my local college.
      Ghost is what we use as we have licencing for it and its easy to teach the students when I need images rolled out.
      I also have support teams made up of students so we have implemented Liberum form its free and easily configured and is Open Source.
      Sybari also have a free help desk package however I have not used it.
      You could try this site as well.
      Also you could develop an MS access database solution that would meet the needs of a small business or you could search on TR as there was a similar Help Desk package posted in the downloads section.

    • #3098049

      Novell and Zenworks

      by jprescott ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      I have to second Novell Zenworks as an excellent soultion for Healthcare. I have utilized this product in a Healthcare Environment at Multiple hospitals, large and small.

      For a cheap helpdesk soltion, look at They have an excellent, full featured product for a reasonable price.

      Finally, If you want an email system that is set it and forget it, look at GroupWise and GWAVA. No more bugs, attacks, or downtime.

      • #3099454


        by rush2112 ·

        In reply to Novell and Zenworks

        The client can be configured to ONLY have the icons on the desktop that you CHOOSE them to have remotely.
        You can then remove an application or add one at your leisure.
        This process also works for drivers, and other changes to the machine.

        Basically setup a test machine, put your stuff on it you want it to have, then push it out to all the desktops in the particular group which needs those items.

        It is a very nice tool to have when managing hundreds of desktops.

        Sneakernet is pretty much a myth after you get the hang of it.

        Need to go to a specific machine and fix something or train a user? There is a way to do that too (remotely)

        MRTG is the best priced monitoring software on the market. $0.00 but it does require that you set it up. It will monitor and graph what you tell it.

        Writing your own helpdesk software is the best idea if you have the resources to make it go because you get to put in your own specific items/features etc without having to customize or bastardize an existing one that costs a lot of money.

        You may want to check out an open source one to get some ideas for your own program.
        Here is an example:

        Here is a try-before-you-buy deal

        there are many free ones out there …google some up.

      • #3258885

        Thanks! Wish we could do Zenworks

        by jsamuelson ·

        In reply to Novell and Zenworks

        however our network is 2000/20003 NT Server only. I’ve worked with that and GroupWise in the past and agree, it’s a much more stable mail system than Outlook!!

        • #3088522

          ZEN works in a windows only environment

          by lupu ·

          In reply to Thanks! Wish we could do Zenworks

          I currently manage a 6000 nodes ZEN installation running of W2K3 servers managing WIN XP nodes. works beautiful. We did run in a few glitches along the way, most of them related to the fact that not all systems were built with the company’s standard image, but we have no problems at the moment.

          The current implementation is used for App deployment, Remote control, Inventory and Asset management, Patch management. We are looking at expanding in to server management and handheld management. When adding the cost to do all the above with separate products, the cost of ZEN becomes extremly attractive. Good suport also.

    • #3098048

      Cheap is hard, but not impossible

      by jim_maclachlan ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Cheap is hard, but not impossible. I know my company has been demanding it for years.

      For an alternative to Ghost, try g4u, Harddisk Image Cloning for PCs –

      For monitoring my T1’s & server, I use which has a monitoring service for $22 per year (I think). It’s not going to check event logs or anything, but I have it on several critical Windows servers & a Windows workstation which is outside the regular, corporate firewall. (I think there is a Linux client, too) The service updates every 7.5 minutes & if it doesn’t 2 times running for a device, I get a text message & an email. Depending on who & how many are down, I know if the problem is my firewall, T1 or a particular server.

      I originally got know-ip’s service to be able to find my home PC’s IP address from work. That’s free & works great, too.

      I’ll agree with using Track-It. I’ve been using it since version 3, I think. It’s been sold & remains solid & inexpensive.

      Get a subscription to, too. I bought a lifetime one there ($50) & it is really worth it. They have a lot of free programs & utilities. Their big service is making sure there is no spyware in the files & they do a good job rating them.


    • #3098653

      It’s the Process!!!!

      by processmanager ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      All the tools listed are great, but have you defined what you do? Does the company management know what your department doesYou may wish to look to the ITIL as a starting point. When you define your processes you benefit by:
      1) Defining the processes can drive the IT budgets as you can prove you need the dollars
      2) Defining the processes will drive the tools that you will need as well the other resources you will need (people etc)
      3) ITIL works well with other standards such as HIPPA, COBIT, ISO etc

      ITIL isn’t the end all, its a starting point and a framework.

      • #3098641

        two cents… or maybe three

        by arley.beyond ·

        In reply to It’s the Process!!!!

        I’ll second the comment that the FIRST thing to do is to clearly define what you are trying to accomplish and that the ITIL framework is a good starting point (you’ve probably already done your definition homework but you’d be surprised at how many people I see who don’t, so I always re-emphasize the point).

        That said…

        Ghost: I was one of the earliest adopters for Ghost (back when BinaryResearch first created it). It was great. But it hasn’t kept up with the times. Hate it now. Substandard, difficult and the new licensing makes the situation even worse.

        Acronis: I was initially skeptical when they first showed up (it just looked to pretty and was priced too low to be any good, right?) but they’ve convinced me. Great stuff from the start and now they’ve grown it up into enterprise-ready products. The company’s tech support leaves a lot to be desired, though.

        Symantec LiveState Recovery: Just moving from Acronis to this now. Almost didn’t look because I don’t generally have a favorable attitude toward Symantec products and because I was very happy with Acronis. But this looks very solid, can do _event driven_ incremental, live snapshots in additon to scheduled and works with VMWare images!

        Servers Alive: Have used this for a long time and it is rock solid and phenomenal bang-for-the-buck. Doesn’t scale well though. Company support is exemplary, all companies should be this good.

        Advanced Host Monitor: Moving to this one because of the scaling problems I’m hitting with Servers Alive. Seems great but I’m early in the experience curve with it.

        HELP DESK
        RT: Great, open-source and free (though I haven’t got a huge amount of experience with using it, so take my opinion appropriately).

        ServiceDeskPlus from AdventNet: Just selected this, trialed it and beginning to deploy. I’m astonished at how good it is so far. Can do self-serve ticket creation/statusing for end users via web and ticket creation via email. Also does asset inventory, purchase tracking, service contract tracking. Web site only shows subscription licensing but they do offer conventional licensing if you ask.

    • #3098619

      NetSupport DNA Helpdesk

      by gurnage ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      I use NetSupport’s DNA Helpdesk for help desk ticketing and tracking. It’s web based and priced per operator – a 3 operator is $1699. There’s a free demo at

    • #3098606

      Give this a shot…

      by howard.blake ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      This works and it’s free.

    • #3098601


      by jmark65 ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      I agree that Acronis is much faster than Ghost for imagining, For free help desk software go to, I have been happy with it’s performance.

    • #3098552

      Winternals for critical system files

      by frierog ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      For backing up critical system files with imaging the entire hard drive, we use Winternals Recovery Manager. We’ve used it to recover a few desktops that got corrupted and it works well. Haven’t had to use it to recover a server yet. Price isn’t too bad. Approx. $70 for Admin console license, $300 for Server license and $20 for Workstation license.

    • #3098412


      by 32bitswide ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Well, you didnt say how many people in your shop, or comfort level with working with different systems…but if you approach this from a low cost/free stand point your could entertain:

      g4l as a replacement for Ghost (free) – I use it with a great deal of success and it allows you to write the image to another partition OR ftp it to a central point for storage. I like it alot.

      Help Desk – at it’s simplest level your could fire up Office, add Access and use the db template they have to Help Desk ticket tracking. There may be more templates out on in the downloads section.
      There is also some Open Source products out there that I have seen…if you are comfortable with that… Personally, I don’t care for Track-It (but that is just my option), slow, cumbersome, difficult to report on. I’d pay about $70 for it, not $700.

      Network/Server monitoring. Check out Nagios. I believe it will also notify you by text msg or e-mail when a device exceeds limits or has problems it (free, Open Source). I also use MRTG (free, Open Source) for network device (bandwidth) monitoring, and yes, you can set it up on Windows. Prints out pretty little graphs that the Execs oh and ah then recycle…but more importantly it gives you a visual of devices that send you scratching your head why it is sending or receiving so much traffic.

      There is also a host of VNC products (free, RealVNC, TightVNC, UltraVNC, etc) that you can remote console into servers/wrkstns and take them over. Technically they violate the EULA, but unless Bill G is going to fly down from Redmond to fix a user problem I really don’t care. I typically use Terminal Server on the Servers for remote admin…and keep VNC as backup. Make sure you address encryption issues if you use VNC, RealVNC sends pw in clear text (so use an encrypted tunnel…)

      Hope this helps.

    • #3098405

      My Helpdesk and Monitoring on Budget

      by techrepublic ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!


      I am using Close Support helpdesk from for several years now and it works great.
      It has all the stuff in it where you have to pay extra by others… Enterprise Edition $ 995,00
      Unlimited users and techni within one domain !
      Only thing I miss is the remote inventory of desktops integrated.
      There I use the old version of there is a new one, but i don’t use it yet.

      For Monitoring, I use IPCheck and Traffic Grapher (Purchase the Monitoring Bundle SME $ 524,95 saves Money :-))
      Works also great.

      Compleet cost of the above bundle $ 1595,95

      But don’t take my word for it, download and test it yourself.

      • #3097986

        Helpdesk Software

        by soulman918 ·

        In reply to My Helpdesk and Monitoring on Budget

        I have to agree about using Liberum. I’ve been using it over a year now and it helps out tremendously. I run it off an XP workstation using IIS and Access for the database. You can access it from any web browse, have tickets assigned automatically to techs, and setup email notifications for new tickets, closed tickets…

        Also has a knowledge base you can setup for your users as well.

        I’ve also added on the Snitz forum (Same forum used on Liberum) so that users can assist each other.

        I also use VNC. There is one app called VNCCON which allows you to scan an IP range for VNC installed, tells you if the PC is on, if it’s running VNC, allows you to record default passwords for connections. Very helpful when supporting seperate locations. I use this from home as well (using a secured VPN connection).

        I have to admit that Ghost is very good. One problem I find is that when doing a multicasting session it tends to eat up the bandwidth on the network though.

      • #3100065


        by ijross74 ·

        In reply to My Helpdesk and Monitoring on Budget


        The Paessler products are great!!!

        • #3094002

          Paessler products are great absolutely.

          by shankar_hn ·

          In reply to IPCheck

          Thay are all low cost and very effective.
          1. PRTG Traffic Grapher for bandwidth monitoring.
          2. IP Check server monitor for monitoring the serverr.
          3. Web Server Stress tool for Web site testing before deployment and then later for monitoring.
          4. SNMP helper for monitoring many parameters of Window servers.


    • #3097898

      YES – Better than Ghost

      by david.puckett ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Do your self a favor and try it.

      • #3258618

        great tool – thanks David

        by londongooner ·

        In reply to YES – Better than Ghost

        Excellent, we are a small ISV – need to image the developer workstations as most of them are one of a kind installations. Normally imaging takes hours and the developer cannot use the computer while it is happening (and I am sick of wasting weekends doing this task).

        This tool hits the sweet spot!

    • #3097887

      System Management Technologies

      by luffy ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!


      We use for the management of all our desktops (800+), and servers (50+) & use their helpdesk product called ManagER.

      Their ITWorks solution which is GUI driven allows us to customise our builds in a completely automated environment. All our workstations as locked down so that a user can’t install anything, we push ever app (200+) out as a package. It’s cheaper and more flexible that either SMS or using AD to deploy apps.

      The helpdesk system allows us to manage our 1200 users and does everything we want & more. There is a web based front end for those folks who want to just log calls and a full package which allows us to log calls plus manage our desktops and servers.

      I highly recommend taking a look at these guys. They are US based, and we are based in the UK but we wouldn’t change them.


      • #3097845

        Network Monitoring

        by jd_russell2003 ·

        In reply to System Management Technologies

        We use ActiveXperts Network Monitor. The link: This is probably the best single software investment we’ve ever purchased. Not only can you verify your server availability but many services as well. You specify port numbers, protocols, frequency, notifications, etc. We utilize email for our primary notification as well as an audible alert and for critical systems and applications a text message is sent to our cell phones. The application can use SMS and other methods as well. We usually have the issue corrected before someone can finish filling out a helpdesk request. The SOX compliance team that audited us said this was one of the most impressive pieces of software they’ve seen as well.

        For helpdesk we are using a web based software on a hosted server called The Wonderdesk. It is inexpensive and customizable. However it does have limitiations when it comes to SOX compliance and the new CRM program we are using has a built in case management system. The key is keep it simple, safe, and secure.

        We are a small shop and the cost of the licenses for Ghost and with the EULA requiments with OEM products from MS prevent us from using it, although I have to agree it is the best. Also depending on your setup many webhosting companies have Asset tracking tools and helpdesk tools that can be utilized if you have any hosted solutions.

        Hope some of that helps.

    • #3097830

      Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools

      by oldrocker53 ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      I work in a healthcare environment also and I know how the budgets are. In my work we have begun to use Microsoft SMS server for remote tools, software deployment and reporting. We use to use WinVNC for desktops, Dameware is agood product for servers and desktops and it’s affordable. GFI languard has good products at aaffordable prices. I liked their Network server monitor and we purchased their Security Event log monitor. Also with SMS we will be deploying images of pc’s later 2nd qtr. I hope this helps, you may email me directly at for any more help.

    • #3259051

      DTP Tools

      by ceitst ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!


      Have you had a look at Altiris, bit pricey, but very good. All depends on how large your organisation is.

      Lotta funtions.

      Good luck

    • #3258683

      Must take a look at this – opManager and service desk

      by londongooner ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      If you want it cheap but not dirty I would be looking at ManageEngine OpManager and Adventnet ManageEngine Service Desk Plus.

      These are two great products and feature rich, it dosent have as many pre-loaded vendor components as others but you can set up your own very easily.

      The trade off as with all freeware/shareware/open source is – if you can setup the product as you want it, it may take more time than the fee paying cousins but could cost you a lot less in the short/medium and long term.

      The investment in time is not lost as you can purchase a commercial licence for both products so all of the hard work does not go to waste

    • #3257621

      healthcare and IT…

      by jrjuiliano ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Ah, yes, wondering healthcare and IT. It’s funny in some places how IT is treated… I work in a billing office for ER doctors, and luckily I don’t feel like a “necessary evil”. Anyway, on to my point…

      If you’re patient, and have some linux experience, there are a lot of open-source software packages you can use for various issues:

      Someone mentioned RT, and there are several other helpdesk software you can install on a web server (apache or IIS even) and it uses a MySQL or Postgresl backend.

      For server monitoring, and I’ve set this up before to test it — try out Great monitoring tool but it is a BEAR to set up completely. But it does provide a few methods for notification like e-mail and pager, etc.

      Imaging, sorry no help.

      I also deal with having to use Excel on my inventory pages for computers, but I have less than 50 computers to deal with, so it’s not so bad. In a hospital environment it tends to get bigger, I’m sure.

      We also use HFNetChkPro for our patch management. We’ve paid for the licenses and support, but I think it’s well worth it, and much less expensive than either SMS or MOM and doesn’t require IIS be installed on the console machine, which is nice.

      Hope that helps you.

    • #3258219


      by richard.ashe ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Altiris can provide all of what you are looking for, allows you to purchase its solutions by individually or together as a suite. All work together thru integrated backend infrastructure controled from single console.

      Best price to value ratio

      • #3088521

        Altiris vs ZEN

        by lupu ·

        In reply to Altiris

        Both suites are extremly good. If I have to do an evaluation starting from scratch, ZENworks and Altiris would be my top two choices.

        • #3226613

          Altiris Kills Zen

          by jeremysmithdallas ·

          In reply to Altiris vs ZEN

          Zenworks hasn’t had any major updates in a while and Novell is struggling. Meanwhile Altiris keeps winning awards and our local user group keeps growing and growing (they showed a slide at the last user group showing 91% of Fortune 100 uses their products).

    • #3088325

      LANDesk and Track It!

      by rnickolaus ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      After looking at the products in this list, we came down to Track It and LANDesk for our use. We didn’t like the Track It package because it had no “flow” and looked like a bunch of disconnected applications. The LANdesk gave us the ability to manage Windows, Mac, and Linux from one console. The help desk ticketing system is noticably absent (although they provide connectors to higher end products) but we felt that we could deploy an open source ticketing system and not have too many issues with running two independent products as long as we are generating tickets via e-mail. All in all, we found our costs per managed device will be returned if we can save about 3 hours per year per device. We are estimating roughly 2-3 times that so we are looking at close to a 300% ROI. Of course, only time will tell.

    • #3150500

      Bozteck VNC Scan

      by sbostedor1 ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      We use Bozteck VNCScan ( It is very powerful and cheap!

    • #3226608


      by jeremysmithdallas ·

      In reply to Top 5 or 10 Desktop Management Tools!

      Altiris focuses on Asset, Client Management, Server Management, and Security. With concerns of SOX, HIPPA, GLB, etc. they provide you solutions that are easy to implement, very powerful, and have a focus on security. If you’re a Dell, HP, or Fujitsu shop this is a no brainer because Altiris was OEM’d for all of their client management tools (Dell Client Manager, HP Client Manager, and Fujitsu Siemens DeskView)

      Checkout their awards:


      Sinclair Community College in Ohio uses Client Management Suite to help secure their network. The college was recognized by Campus Technology for their efforts.

      Client Management Suite wins the 2004 InfoWeek Switzerland Editor’s Choice award in a comparative review of desktop management suites.

      Network Computing magazine honors Client Management Suite with Editor’s Choice award. Client Management Suite is recognized for “multiple components that integrate flawlessly,” including “excellent reporting, license monitoring, patch management and usability.”

      Readers of W2Knews vote Client Management Suite as their favorite configuration management solution and the winner of a 2005 W2Knews Target Award.
      Read complete story

      Client Management Suite wins the 2005 Network Computing Germany review of leading desktop management products.

      Client Management Suite wins the Network Computing 2004 Well-Connected Award for desktop management suites. This marks the second consecutive year an Altiris product has won the award. According to Network Computing, “Altiris’ superbly integrated suite has lots of add-on modules topped with a cherry of a patch-management system.”
      Read complete story

      Altiris is recognized as the 2002 Network Industry Awards Finalist as a company leading the way in the networking market.

      Client Management Suite shows a strong innovation and solutions approach with a keen orientation to government customer requirements, according to FOSE, which awards the suite The Best New Technology Award in the Enterprise Application Software category in 2002.

      Altiris wins its second consecutive Network Computing Editor’s Choice award for Desktop Management. Client Management Suite is recognized for being “at the forefront of desktop management innovation” and includes “a number of features that will make tech support personnel salivate.”

      Network Computing awards Client Management Suite its Well-Connected Award and recognizes the suite as a winner in both the Network and Systems Management core area and the Desktop Management categories. Altiris offers “revolutionary desktop backup” and is an “excellent tool for service-desk personnel,” according to the magazine.


      SVS beats out more than 200 products to win the Microsoft TechEd 2006 Best New Product award. Read the press release here.

      SVS wins the Best of Microsoft Management Summit 2006 as the best new product. Read the press release here.

      In its Jan. 10, 2006 review of the most innovative software and development tools of 2005, PC Magazine shines the spotlight on two products?one is Altiris Software Virtualization Solution 2.0. “Altiris’s Software Virtualization Solution could reshape the PC landscape at the IT level,” the magazine stated. (PC Magazine Technical Excellence Award Logo is a registered trademark of Ziff Davis Publishing Holdings Inc. Used under license.)
      Read the complete story

      SVS was awarded the PC Magazine Editors’ Choice Award. Read the review here.

      SVS takes top honors as Overall Best of Show at FOSE 2006. Read the press release here.

      SVS is rated ‘Excellent’ by InfoWorld. Read the review here.

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