GFI LANguard is a product that has been around for a LONG time, I remember using it way back at version 3 or 4 and it was always my choice of platform if I was auditing a Windows based network.
Especially internal Windows LAN setups with a domain, for Linux I always felt there were better choices – but as far as Windows went LANguard was my choice.
Fairly recently GFI released version 9 of their scanner (overview here) with improvements to the scanning engine and the interface (including the monitoring dashboard which gives you a good heads-up of the scan results).
One of the big positives for me with LANguard was the ability to detect patch levels and automatically roll out patches over the network. This makes it a very comprehensive solution, the recent versions also include checks to ensure 3rd party software such as Anti-virus solutions are also up to date (full features here).
It’s as easy to install and get up and running as ever, if you do have any issues the Installation Guide is here [PDF].
Getting started with a scan is as easy as clicking 1 button, the interface has been simplified from what I remember and it’s a lot more attractive than it used to be. In fact it’s simple enough that non-security IT folks could use it without much problem.
After a scan is complete you have a choice to Analyze or Remediate. The Analysis section will give you fairly detailed instructions on any vulnerabilities found (including a vulnerability level) and full system information including shares, patch levels and so on.
The Remediate section will inform you of missing patches and allow you to apply these. Other than the standard MS patches and service packs you can also deploy 3rd party applications and uninstall rogue software.
Most things in the scanner can be scheduled too so for example if you want to scan outside of office ours or roll out software/patches at the weekend you can set LANguard to do that.
The dashboard is a nice addition which gives you an overview of the network security and the changes in vulnerabilities over time.
It also comes with the generic network utilities like Whois, DNS Lookup, Traceroute & SNMP Walk.
All in all I think it’s a great tool, especially for those managing Windows based networks. It makes your life a LOT easiest and it makes it easier to manage patches and software across the Domain.
It’s not a hardcore security tool, which means it also appeals to people more in the Sys Admin & Network areas of the industry. If you have any Windows machines do give it a look, perhaps start with the free version below.
You can download the latest version here:
Pricing is done on a per-IP basis with prices starting from around $32USD per IP for a 10-24 IP block.
There is also a FREE version available here: