10 great free downloads for your network

They're useful, easy to learn ... and you certainly can't beat free

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Advanced Net Tools (ANT)

Here's the Swiss Army Knife of network utilities, and you won't have to pay a penny for it. This freebie puts a whole suite of tools at your fingertips, including ones for conducting ports scans, DNS lookups and pings, and scanning for network shares, checking on routing tables and more.

The security modules are especially useful for quick-and-dirty network scans. There's a network port scanner that can scan all computers on your network and report on their open ports, and a share scanner that reports on all the shared drives on your network.

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Advanced Network Tools is the equivalent of a Swiss Army Knife.

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The information modules are also useful. With them, you can examine your routing table and add and delete entries in it. You can also find out what IP addresses are available to be assigned on your network. Other modules do advanced DNS lookups, let you view all the network adapters connected to computers on the network and add and remove their IP addresses, and more.

DreamSys Server Monitor

Want to know if your servers are up and running? Then get this utility that will monitor whether your servers are alive and, if they're not, take a variety of actions that you can choose. At a specified interval, it will check your servers to see if they're still running. You can also check the servers manually at any time.

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DreamSys Server Monitor checks whether your servers are alive and sends out alerts if it detects any problems.

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You can also tell the program to take a variety of actions when it identifies a problem server, including sending an e-mail, rebooting the machine, starting a service, playing a sound or running a command. It can also play a sound or run a command when the server is running.

Be aware that it can be a bit confusing setting up the program to monitor a server. If you're going to monitor a server via TCP/IP, when you add a new server to monitor, make sure to click the Options tab and type in the TCP port you want to monitor. If you don't, you'll get an error message.

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