Product review: eTelemetry's Locate: DNS for People

It solves the anonymous IP address problem and more

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If you use LDAP or Active Directory and have done a decent job of keeping it up to date with accurate user information such as phone numbers, e-mail addresses and office locations, then Locate can leverage this information in its reports and present you with this information and a clickable link to fire off an e-mail to the offending party. Privacy issues are always a concern, but if your company has clear policies in this regard, you should be protected.

If you run a 24/7 shop or have your network spread across buildings that are open past 5 p.m., then the product will pay for itself in the off-hours when problems arise and you don't want to return to the office to debug them. Finally, if you have mostly unmanaged switches on your network, this product will be able to give you visibility down to the port level, let you manage the switches, and give you port and MAC addresses for your users.

All of the reports are available via an ordinary Web browser. The product gives you both historical data as well as current information about your network, so it becomes more useful the longer you have it around. You can find out the top bandwidth hogs by department, for example, which is something that the old Sniffers could do (though they didn't do it as easily as Locate does).

You can find out if employees are running on computers they shouldn't be running on, or if they're bringing in their own laptops and jacking them into ports at work. You can see the time of day that employees logged in, which computers they logged in from, or if they left work and didn't log out of their PCs (usually a security no-no).

Product review: eTelemetry's Locate: DNS for People

This graphic shows a report for all the particular IP addresses in use for one department. It shows the MAC address, user name, switch port and e-mail address of each user.

(Click image to see larger view)

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