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I'm looking for some Open Source [free] or relatively inexpensive solution for monitoring specific folders on a file system and 'Windows' network with several shares. When a file is added or changed, I would like to be able to notify myself and/or others that there is a new file, or changes to the current files. We have a SBS 2003 Server with a couple of shares, in a small non-profit office.

I would prefer:

  • Runs on Server Side (we have both Windows and Linux servers)
  • Notification on different time scales - hourly/daily/weekly
  • Notification sent via e-mail to different addresses

It would be entirely possible to 'roll my own' using bash/php/program of choice but I am curious as to any current solutions to avoid re-inventing the wheel. Also would love to hear anyone using a current system or how they have implemented this idea in their office.

Also most office workers are non-computer literate so git or other version control system isn't an option at this point.


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4 Answers 4

up vote 3 down vote accepted

For your linux server you can use inotify-tools based on inotify. For your windows server I haven't a solution.

+1 for inotify for Linux systems. Also check out which is a perl script that uses inotify. –  StackKrish Jun 23 '09 at 14:24

If you wanted an Open Source tool, I'd recommend OSSEC (works on both Windows and Linux), which also offers commercial support if required.

A commercial option is Verisys. It's easy to use and a lot cheaper than Tripwire (from your question I would say that Tripwire would be way too expensive, and bloated for your requirements).


You could use WMI events to make this happen (note: a common mistake is to use __InstanceModificationEvent rather than ("SELECT * FROM __InstanceOperationEvent) but I'd suggest implementing windows sharepoint server. SBS 2003 however has some unique issues if you want to upgrade to the latest version rather than using the version included. See WSS v3.0 Installation on SBS 2003 and Installing Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 on a Server Running Windows Small Business Server 2003

With sharepoint you get all notifications you or your users could want and a whole lot more.

+1 for SharePoint; seems to meet the requirement better. –  MFAH Jun 23 '09 at 14:39

The following tools are worth considering

If you are open to commercial software, then you can have a look at Tripwire enterprise. The OSS version AFAIK can not be run on Windows.

Tripwire enterprise -


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