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Symantec offers NT 5.0 plug-in

Symantec will launch what is sure to be one of several software plug-ins for Microsoft's Management Console.

Symantec will launch what is sure to be one of several software plug-ins next week for Microsoft's Management Console (MMC), a component of the company's Windows NT 5.0 upgrade that is currently available for use.

Starting in June, Symantec will release a Norton System Center piece of software as a management tool for all of the company's products. That software will snap into the MMC, an overarching management software "framework" intended as an central console for a wide array of third party administrative applications for NT.

The Norton System Center will be offered as a free add-on for customers using Symantec's license-based pricing and will initially incorporate the company's Norton Antivirus suite. Subsequent offerings will include support for the rest of the company's software: Norton Utilities, Norton Your Eyes Only, and pcAnywhere.

The MMC component of Windows NT 5.0 shipped with a package of NT 4.0 enhancements late last year called the Option Pack. It serves as a central management component for NT-based networks. The Symantec snap-in will appear as a single icon, or entry point, into management of all of the company's software, according to company executives.

The Norton System Center consists of a console as well as a series of client "agent" software that communicates with the console and performs functions such as software delivery, updates, and software configuration.

Operating systems supported include Windows 95 and the forthcoming 98 as well as Windows NT Workstation and Server 3.51 and 4.0 with the installation of certain service packs. Plans are in the works to support Novell NetWare, Lotus Notes, Apple Computer Macintosh, and Windows 3.x systems.

Windows NT 5.0 Workstation and Server are expected to be released sometime early next year.