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Quest Ships Spotlight on Active Directory 3.0

Quest Software chose the recent Microsoft Management Summit to announce shipment of the latest update to its Spotlight on Active Directory product.

Quest Software chose the recent Microsoft Management Summit (see http://mcpmag.com/news/article.asp?EditorialsID= for a related announcement) as the venue to announce shipment of the latest update to its Spotlight on Active Directory product. The Spotlight series of software provide diagnostics and monitoring for a variety of server software. In this case, the product can help you manage all of your Active Directory servers and their topology. As with the rest of the Spotlight products, Spotlight on AD is designed to not just catch errors, but to help you determine their root causes. If the software sees a server responding slowly to replication traffic, for example, you can drill in and find out what's going on.

The big news in this version is a new interface dubbed the Topology Viewer. The Topology Viewer shows all of your AD sites and servers, and the links between them. You can see the routes that replication traffic is taking, force replication across any particular link, and even reconfigure the AD topology from here. This screen looks like an impressive management tool for AD infrastructure, which can grow fearsomely complex to try to understand without graphics.

In addition to directory replication, you can also use the Topology Viewer to see how file replication and time synchronization are functioning. For any given server you can also view an entire screen of diagnostic information that includes LDAP sessions, LSASS and NTFRS funtioning, the size of the AD store, CPU usage, location of the FSMO roles, and more. Quest is targeting this product at the senior administrators and architects who need to understand the entire AD structure across an enterprise, as well as those who have to maintain AD deployments.

In addition to the diagnostic and troubleshooting features, Spotlight on AD can also help to educate staff on how AD works by showing graphically what's going on in all those servers.

The product is priced at $1495 per managed domain controller. It's shipping now, and you can download a 30-day evaluation copy from the Quest web site.

About the Author

Mike Gunderloy, MCSE, MCSD, MCDBA, is a former MCP columnist and the author of numerous development books.

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