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Netscape expands network software

The company updates its network administration software, Netscape Mission Control, to manage cross-platform shared network resources.

Netscape (NSCP) announced today that it has expanded its network administration software, Netscape Mission Control, to manage cross-platform shared network resources.

Mission Control software allows Information Services managers to control and administer shared data, such as user and configuration information. The previous version of Mission Control worked with Netscape products alone, but the new version expands the software to provide an embeddable administration infrastructure for enterprise software.

Netscape also announced partnerships with companies such as Cabletron, Hewlett-Packard, Diffusion, Novonyx, and Silicon Graphics, which plan to embed Mission Control into their products.

"We've basically taken Mission Control, and made it available to third parties, so that they don't have to reinvent the wheel," said Marc Andreessen, vice president of products for Netscape.

Mission Control uses the cross-platform Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) and Java to allow IS managers a way to manage directories and security protocols as well as applications across different platforms and operating systems through a Java-based console.

According to Andreessen, Mission Control reduces costs for companies who need to manage directory information for different enterprise software products.

"If I'm an IS manager today, I have an operating system from one vendor and a router from another vendor," Andreessen said. "They've all got separate directories, separate security systems for access, separate management systems, and so the result is as an IS manager I have to go into each system individually, and that adds up really quickly on any kind of large-scale intranet or extranet. Mission Control tackles that problem head-on."

Components of the new version of Mission Control are available in current versions of SuiteSpot, and the Mission Control Console is expected to be available in the first half of next year.