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Don MacVittie replies: Opsware approached us after we started testing, and we considered including its product. But the vendor focused largely on the inventory function, whereas we were looking for advanced asset information.

It's interesting that you find the application to be labor-intensive. Opsware tells me that the product automates the distribution of agents so that it's not so time- consuming.

Most of the packages I evaluated will do a "differential inventory"--that is, store the inventory on disk and report only those things that have been added or removed. This helps with the client-performance problems you're seeing in Opsware. Ask the vendor about that. Nothing can eliminate performance problems, because the application has to look at every file on the machine to do a software inventory, but I've found better performance with differentials than with complete inventories.

In my tests, the only duplication problem I saw involved NetSimplicity Visual Asset Manager 2004, which let me import ADS twice with no warning message.

Reporting of multiple copies is scary--I wonder what's causing that in your application. Perhaps it's leftover, post-upgrade information.

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