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Comdex Light on Products, Big on Windows

LAS VEGAS -- Comdex attracted a mere fraction of its peak attendance, but that didn’t stop Windows third parties from crowding the Microsoft Pavilion and announcing new wares. In fact, the Microsoft booth was one of the few show floor areas that drew consistent crowds.

Help Desk Technology Corp. released HelpSTAR 8.0, help desk software that can track software assets, and help maintain license compliance. A new hyperlink-oriented interface is said to speed navigation.

WIBU Systems, know for the SecuriKey authentication device, launched a software license compliance and digital rights management system dubbed CodeMeter. The device plugs into a USB port, and holds encrypted license information for software and content. Now WIBU has to convince ISVs and content owners to support the dongle-like device and build a volume market, a process the company believes could take several years.

IMlogic showed off IM Manager 5.1, a tool that lets IT control the burgeoning base of IM users. Aimed largely at nipping IM viruses and attacks in the bud, IM Manager provides central control of IM accounts, reporting, and can block IT-defined file types. It can also scan for viruses, and block spam.

Computer Associates is looking to make friends in the Windows market by giving away free one-year subscriptions to eTrust EZ Armor anti-virus and personal firewall software. Aimed at home users, CA hopes pleased user will shell out $50 for the tool once the year is up. CA also shipped eTrust Secure Content Manager that blocks inappropriate content, spam, and viruses.

A new family of Windows-Powered NAS devices debuted from Fastora. The devices, starting at $995, work with Fast Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet.

Also on the anti-spam front, Mail-Filters released version 3 of its spam engine that powers SpamCure, SpamRepellent, and SpamCure SDK.

AdRem Software showed its recently announced NetCrunch 3.0, now in beta. The new software boasts physical topology mapping, SNMP management, a Web interface, and beefed up application monitoring.

Looking to protect PocketPCs from viruses, Global Hauri launched ViRobot Expert Wireless. The product is less than $20.

Microsoft, however, blew away all spam third parties this week by announcing that an anti-spam engine will be bundled with Exchange starting next year.

About the Author

Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.

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