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McAfee meters for Microsoft

McAfee introduces a toolset that adds software license metering capabilities to Microsoft's Systems Management Server and makes it easier to centrally distribute software.

McAfee (MCAF) will introduce a toolset that adds software license metering capabilities to Microsoft's Systems Management Server (SMS) and makes it easier to centrally distribute software.

SaberTools SMS, to be introduced on November 18, includes enhanced utilities that add features previously not included in SMS. McAfee's metering capability, unavailable in SMS, has been added to the Microsoft management platform and integrated with the SQL database within SMS so that metering information can be viewed on an SMS management console.

Software license metering is an important function for network managers because it allows them to monitor software usage on desktops and share software licenses across multiple servers on a network. Reports can also be generated with the metering utility that allows an administrator to change license agreements to fit the needs of an organization.

SMS currently provides desktop inventory, remote diagnosis, and software distribution capabilities. However, McAfee's WinCompare distribution utility, now optimized for SMS, makes distribution simpler for SMS administrators.

McAfee officials said administrators have requested the increased functionality tied into SMS for some time, indicative of increasing acceptance of the Microsoft desktop management suite.

SaberTools SMS also includes a menu interface for desktops that lets administrators assign what kinds of icons can appear on a user's Windows 95, Windows NT, Windows 3.x, or DOS desktop. SaberTools SMS also includes McAfee's Remote Desktop 32 application, which lets an administrator troubleshoot a desktop across a network.

SaberTools SMS software includes client and server components, with two-year licenses starting at $30.70 per node for 100 nodes. The suite will be available at McAfee's Web site starting Monday and will ship in a box in two weeks.