Sign up ×
Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I'm looking for an audit/inventory package that can run on all our PCs and identify all installed software.

I've found issues with the packages that I've tried in that most of the packages seem to simply list the contents of the Add/Remove Programs list, which is useless with any application that is just a standalone executable.

We have a few hundred PCs so the likes of Altiris may be too costly.

share|improve this question

closed as off-topic by masegaloeh, Ward, Jenny D, Katherine Villyard, BillThor Apr 13 at 1:30

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Sounds like Windows but we shouldn't have to guess or assume. Please use appropriate tags. –  John Gardeniers May 4 '10 at 21:39

5 Answers 5

If you're at all interested in indexing hardware too, we use a combination of OCS and GLPI, and it indexes everything on Windows, Mac, and Linux (Mac and Linux for the most part, anyway).

Here are instructions on how to get them setup to work together:

You want to use both because OCS is a great inventory program with an interface that looks like it was created by an 8 year old, while GLPI has a great interface, but the automatic inventory aspect is a little weak.

As I mentioned, it does hardware as well as software.

share|improve this answer
That's what we use and it works great. –  Maxwell May 3 '10 at 16:01

A while back I was looking at a program called Tideway Foundation (now called Atrium since it was acquired by another company) that seemed to have a really nice inventory program that went beyond just "Add/Remove" programs that you're talking about.

They even had a free "community edition" version that took the form of a virtual machine that could get you up and running.

I didn't get a chance to fully install and test out the free server since priorities had changed within my department, but I was very impressed with what I saw.

share|improve this answer

We have used iInventory for many years. It does a good job of searching all executables and has some built in reports for displaying the data.

It's not the Cadillac of auditing programs, but it's good enough to keep you in compliance...

share|improve this answer
Sadly that looks a little too expensive, though I guess if it's thorough enough it may be a possibility - don't get me wrong here we aren't wanting to do this for free, but ideally not for $15-20 per PC either. –  Hutch May 3 '10 at 16:18
Microsoft at one point had a free auditing software that would scan for any programs that were produced by members of the BSA (the software police). I never trusted that they weren't/going to use it for spying on your compliance, especially since it included the notice about sending of data to Microsoft. You might check their site... I received a disk in the mail one day, but have since tossed it. –  Scott Lundberg May 3 '10 at 19:05

As the vendor of JDisc Discovery, I am a bit biased :-).

But you might consider to test JDisc Discovery. JDisc Discovery is an inventory product that reads the software information from multiple sources in the registry. It also detects software and hardware for many different platforms (HP-UX, Linux, Solaris, AIX, MAC OS X).

Additionally, it also has some built in scripts to detect Oracle database servers (which do not use the Microsoft Installer).

If you have homegrown applications that do not use the platforms standard installer, then you might extend JDisc's Discovery by your own VBS scripts to detect those applications.

Find more information and a free download on

share|improve this answer
But the registry isn't an accurate source of installed programs - logging all executables is (however overkill it may seem). Let's say I have a machine with the PC Tools Password Generator on it, it's a totally standalone executable, it won't be in the registry, it won't be in Add/Remove Programs, but it does have a license agreement so we need to know it's there. –  Hutch May 3 '10 at 18:02

You really need to look at Network Inventory Advisor. It’s not free but the price is fair (nearly 4 dollars per one pc). It has good functionality for the software inventory and license compliance audit. It also performs the hardware inventory and generates reports in different variations, which can be printed. You can download it here:

share|improve this answer

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.