Spiceworks, provider of free, ad-supported IT management tools, has announced version 4.5
of their flagship product. The latest version brings a host of features geared both at increasingly larger networks and delivers language support for users around the globe. The update also streamlines trouble ticket processing, delivers secure remote support and lets users put some spit and polish on their network maps.
While Spiceworks began as a basic network inventory and scan tool, over the years it has grown into a full-fledged help desk and IT support community. The company claims to have over 800,000 registered users. The new version doubles the number of supported network devices to 1,000, raising the bar on the size of the organization that can take advantage of the free product. Also new to the product real-time monitoring for Microsoft's SQL Server, capturing performance statistics such as transaction load, I/O throughput and disk space consumption, both for real-time tracking as well as historical trending. Administrators managing multiple locations can now connect securely with full SSL support. Likewise, the new rules-based routing and queuing features for trouble tickets make it easier to assign the right person to a particular issue.
Spiceworks has also tapped its large user community to enable features within the product, either through the use of plug-ins or with the crowd-sourcing of projects. In the latest release, Spiceworks supports ten languages. These translations were provided by the users themselves, with the first language coming in within twelve hours of the tools being made available.
With the latest updates, Spiceworks begins its transition beyond its core SMB market and into progressively larger companies. With its ad-supported business model, a large and active user community behind it, and a near continuous stream of new features, even the most advertising-averse IT manager would be hard pressed to justify the thousands of dollars on competing management and help desk tools.