Specialist network developer 10-Strike Software has released 10-Strike Network Scanner, a free tool for listing and managing all your network devices.
There’s a lot of competition around, but does the program bring anything new or interesting to the table? We downloaded a copy to take a look.
Installation was straightforward, no adware or other hassles. (If you need a portable version, copy the installation folder to a USB stick, and edit ExeFilePath in NetScanner.ini to point to the program’s folder.)
Launch 10-Strike Network Scanner as an administrator and you’re prompted to choose the network adapter and IP address range you’d like to scan.
There is an odd design issue here, as by default it adds the first adapter in your list and sets a massive scan range of 0.0.0.1-255.255.255.254. But if you delete that and select your real adapter instead, all should be well.
The program offers a lot of control over the scanning process. By default it uses regular ICMP pings, but you can opt to use ARP, or TCP with your choice of ports, and you’re able to search for printers, UPnP devices, SNP hosts and more.
Accept the defaults and you’re warned that the scan can take several minutes. 10-Strike Network Scanner’s interface is entirely unresponsive while this is happening, and the program warns you that if it stays this way for 5-10 minutes, you should manually close the process and start again. Which isn’t exactly reassuring.
We didn’t experience any problems, though, and after waiting for a while the program listed everything on our network, along with its IP and MAC address, host type, DNS name, manufacturer, description and more. This list can be saved as a report, or copied to the clipboard.
There are options to connect to network PCs, and – assuming you’ve administrator rights on those systems, and they’re set up correctly – you’re able to browse their Registry, view their installed applications, list running processes and check assorted other system information.
A right-click menu offers items to open a network system in Explorer, run ping or traceroute operations, and remotely turn devices on or off (if they support it).
Bonus extras include a simple manager for your network shares, and there’s even a basic monitor to help you see when they’re being accessed.
There are one or two odd bugs. If you don’t run the program as an administrator, for instance, then view a host’s properties, you may be unable to close the dialog as it doesn’t have permission to modify its own configuration files.
Still, we like the configurability of the scanning process, and 10-Strike Network Scanner isn’t bad for a first release. Worth a look if you’re not already happy with something similar.