On your list of things to be thankful for this holiday season, you've probably not yet penciled in "NetPro's enhanced management and compliance solutions." But you might have reason to. Recently I spoke with NetPro's Rod Simmons, director of product management, about enhancements to NetPro's AccessManager, RestoreADmin, and ReportADmin for ACS. Features new to these solutions arose in answer to the question "How can we solve a problem that customers face?"

AccessManager 2.0 was created to help admins control security and auditing. NetPro recently added coverage for Microsoft SQL Server and added the concept of approval-based management using the workflow process. Simmons said, "A lot of things admins are running that aren't key to the business are still applications that are useful to the user. AccessManager 2.0 lets the user get access without having to bother IT for help. It empowers the end user and frees up IT from menial tasks."

RestoreADmin 3.5 added the concept of a recycle bin to AD. Customers are massively adopting ADAM (now known as ADLDS) but Microsoft didn't plan for it to be a business critical application, Simmons said. Into the void, also known as an opportunity, NetPro moved in to offer AD recovery capability.

ReportADmin for ACS beefs up Microsoft Audit Collection Services (ACS), which lets you stream audit data back into your system center. Microsoft offers reporting with ACS, but not detailed analytical reporting, Simmons said, and so NetPro's solution steps in. ReportADmin for ACS takes that streaming data and puts an analytic engine on it and a curve mechanism to help you build a way to look at data more granularly.