Disk-space management is an important but tedious task. You can add a 4GB disk to your storage array one week, and the next week receive warning messages in your Windows NT event log that you are again running critically low on disk space. If you seek relief from monitoring disk space, check out Simac Software Products' SpaceGuard 184.108.40.206.
SpaceGuard, a client/server application from Simac's disk-space quota management program, lets you set quotas for different directories on your server. Unlike competing products, SpaceGuard supports quotas on all NT file system types, including High-Performance File System (HPFS) and FAT. You need only one copy of the client application to protect multiple servers on your network. However, you must install the server application on all the servers you want to protect. You can then use the client application as an administration program to establish and maintain your quotas. Users can use the client application to monitor their quota usage.
You need only two components to install SpaceGuard: your NT server and a CD-ROM drive. After you insert the CD-ROM, you specify which components you want to install (i.e., the client, the server, or both), along with your name, the company name, and serial number. Installation is automatic; you don't need to reboot.
Establishing and Monitoring Quotas
You must use the client application to drill down to the point on your network's server and directory list in which you want to establish a quota. (The client software lists all hosts on your network, not just the SpaceGuard-protected hosts.) When you click Add on the Quota Menu, a four-tab dialog box will appear, and you can establish your quota policy. For each quota, you can set a warning and a maximum. The warning notifies users when they are about to exceed their quota, and the maximum defines the total amount of disk space allotted to the directory. The User and Administrator index tabs define possible actions to take when a user reaches the warning or maximum value that you set. You can send warnings to users via pop-up messages or email, and if necessary, revoke write access. When you revoke write access, you prevent users from saving any more data and therefore, save disk space.
After you've established the quotas, you can use SpaceGuard's monitor screen to monitor quota status. As Screen 1 shows, the monitor screen displays all the protected directories on your server. A small flag indicates the quota status for each entry. The screen also lists the number of files and directories and amount of disk space consumed.
A Single Restriction
SpaceGuard offers only directory-level quotas, so you can't set overall quotas for individual users (e.g., allot 5MB of disk space to users, regardless of where they save their files). However, most disk-space problems occur in users' home directories, so unless you have large temporary storage areas or common areas to facilitate file interchange between users, this restriction won't affect you.
SpaceGuard is an excellent product for NT systems administrators. Plus, at roughly the cost of a decent 4GB hard disk drive, the software will more than pay for itself in disk-space savings over time.
Note to readers: Simac recently released an upgraded version of this product (version 220.127.116.11).
Contact: Simac Software Products 31-348-431636 (The Netherlands)
SERVERxtras * 770-952-6356 or 800-689-8727 (US)
Price: $495 per server ($569.25 including 1 year of technical support)
System Requirements: Windows NT Server 3.5 or 4.0 or Windows 95