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PRODUCT SUMMARY Symantec Norton Administrator, Version 1.0
Company: Symantec Corp., based in Cupertino, Calif., can be reached at (800) 441-7234 or (408) 253-9600.
List price: Ranges from $325 (five-user pack) to $44,000 (for 1,000 users).
Requires: Novell NetWare, Versions 2.x, 3.x, and 4.x (it does not support NetWare 4.0 Directory Services); Banyan Vines, Version 4.5 or later; Microsoft LAN Manager, Version 2.1 or later; IBM LAN Server, Version 2.0 or later; or Windows 3.1 workstation with 5MB of free disk space.
Pros: Easy-to-use Windows interface; comprehensive inventories; flexible software metering and distribution.
Cons: Printing bug; inadequate technical support.
Summary: If you are looking for a Windows-based network workstation management package, Norton Administrator for Networks is easy to use, flexible, and a fair value. It does not have the workstation monitoring features of Intel's LANDesk, but it has better software distribution and metering.
You can look at network management in many ways, and every vendor seems to take a slightly different perspective. Symantec Corp.'s Norton Administrator for Networks, Version 1.0 leaves network monitoring to other utilities and focuses on workstation management, network inventories, and application metering.
We found many impressive features in this Windows-based package. It has a slick interface and is easy to use. But Norton Administrator does not quite match the range of management tools offered by competitors, such as Frye Computer System Inc.'s Utilities or Saber Software Corp.'s LAN Workstation. We also ran into a frustrating printing bug.
We tested Norton Administrator on a Novell Inc. NetWare 3.11 network and based our scoring on the criteria used for our July 12 (page 58) product comparison of network utilities. We used a slightly different report card to accommodate Norton's lack of monitoring tools.
Norton Administrator's management modules are nicely grouped under the administrator's console. Tool icons on top of the console let you switch between inventorying, software distribution, scripts, charting, metering, and printing.
Clicking on the inventory module pops up a table view of the inventory …