Product Reviews

Tapping into Active Directory’s Full Potential

Once you set up AD, who’s going to maintain it all? These four tools address delegation and management challenges.

OnePoint Directory and Resource Administrator is a proxy-based AD delegation tool in the same vein as bv-Admin. NetIQ, however, has thrown in a few bells and whistles to sweeten the deal. For example, the product features an excellent HTML interface to ease the distribution of software deployment for all the new delegation going on in your enterprise, and it has a highly polished look and feel. While the base Directory and Resource Administrator product doesn’t work with Exchange directories or perform migrations, NetIQ has product offerings to fill those gaps if you need them.

OnePoint Directory and Resource Administrator installation went without a hitch and even set up Web-based administration pages and IIS metabase settings. Reporting is implemented via a runtime version of Microsoft Access. While this certainly saved the developers at NetIQ some time, it does leave the user with a somewhat disjointed experience as remote users can’t as easily gain access to reporting as they can to their administrative tasks via the HTTP interface.

OnePoint Directory and Resource Administrator
OnePoint Directory and Resource Administrator has one of the better-designed interfaces. (Click image to view larger version.)

It’s obvious that more time and effort went into the interface and usability of OnePoint Directory and Resource Administrator than into several of the other products reviewed combined! But potential buyers are once again warned to make sure they fully understand the repercussions and scalability concerns of deploying a proxy solution before heading down that road. I hope NetIQ will better integrate reporting capability into its product; but if you want a mature AD delegation tool, OnePoint Directory and Resource Administrator shouldn’t be overlooked.

About the Author

Chip Andrews, MCSE+I, MCDBA is a software security architect at (Clarus Corp.). Chip maintains the (sqlsecurity.com) Web site and speaks at security conferences on SQL Server security issues.

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