Using Graphical Administrative Tools

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Archived content - No warranty is made as to technical accuracy. Content may contain URLs that were valid when originally published, but now link to sites or pages that no longer exist.

from Chapter 1, Windows NT Administrator's Pocket Consultant by William R. Stanek.

Windows NT provides several types of tools for system administration. The GUI-based tools are the ones you'll use the most. You can access these tools by selecting Start, then choosing Programs, and then using the Administrative Tools (Common) menu.

Most of the graphical administrative tools can be used to manage the system to which you are currently logged on, as well as systems throughout Windows NT domains. For example, in Server Manager you specify the computer or domain you want to work with using the Select Domain option of the Computer menu. Table 1-1, on the following page, lists the key graphical administrative tools and their uses.

Table 1-1 Quick Reference for Key Windows NT Administration Tools

Administrative Tool

File Name




Backup and restore files on tape devices.

DHCP Manager


Manage dynamic IP addressing with DHCP (Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol).

DNS Manager


Manage DNS (Domain Name Service).

Disk Administrator


Manage disks, disk partitions, volumes, and software RAID arrays.

Event Viewer


View status messages for the system, security, and applications logs.

License Manager


Manage software licenses for the network.

Network Client Administrator


Manage network installation of clients and client updates.

Network Monitor


Monitor network activity levels at the Frame and the Packet level.

Performance Monitor


Monitor system usage as an aid in performance tuning.

Remote Access Administrator


Manage Remote Access Services.

Remoteboot Manager


Administer remoteboot clients.

Server Manager


Manage network computers, resources, services, and domain controllers.

System Policy Editor


Manage system policies, which specify the permitted actions for users on a system.

Task Manager


Manage system tasks and processes. You can also view system performance.

User Manager


Manage local user and group accounts.

User Manager
for Domains


Manage domain user and group accounts.

Windows NT Diagnostics


View system settings and properties for the purpose of troubleshooting.

WINS Manager


Manage WINS (Windows Internet Naming Service).

Tools and Configuration

The administrative tools available on your system depend on its configuration. By default, Windows NT workstations and servers have different sets of tools. For example, User Manager is installed on Windows NT workstations and User Manager for Domains is installed on Windows NT servers. Tools can also be installed when you add services to a system. For example, if you install the Microsoft DHCP Server service on a Windows NT server, DHCP Manager is installed as well.

Installing Tools on a Windows NT Workstation

Additional network administration tools can be installed on Windows clients from the Windows NT distribution CD-ROM. The goal is to allow administrators to manage network services and resources from their primary computer whether it runs Windows NT Workstation or Windows 95 (these tools are not available for Windows 98). If you want to install additional tools on a Windows NT workstation, follow these steps:

  1. Log on to the workstation using an account with administrator privileges.

  2. Insert the Windows NT Server 4.0 CD-ROM into the CD-ROM drive.

  3. Execute the SETUP.BAT file in the \Clients\Srvtools\Winnt directory on the CD. The Windows NT Server management tools are installed on your workstation.

  4. Once you install the client tools on a workstation, you can run them from the command line or the Run utility. The tools installed are DHCP Manager, Remote Access Server Administrator, Remoteboot Manager, Server Manager, User Manager for Domains, and WINS Manager.

Seeing the Administrative Tools

If you want the tools to appear in the Administrative Tools (Common) menu, follow these steps:

  1. Administrative tools are installed in the %SystemRoot%\system32 directory. Access this directory in Windows NT Explorer.

    Note: Throughout the text, you'll see references to %SystemRoot%. This is an environment variable used by Windows NT to designate the base directory for the Windows NT operating system, such as C:\WINNT. For more information on environment variables, see Chapter 5.

  2. Create shortcuts for the administrative tools in the %SystemRoot%\ Profiles\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Administrative Tools (Common) directory. Drag the icon for each tool from the system32 folder to this directory.

  3. Rename the shortcuts as appropriate.

On a Windows 95 system, you can install the administrative tools as follows:

  1. Insert the Windows NT Server 4.0 CD-ROM into the CD-ROM drive.

  2. Access the Control Panel and then start the Add/Remove Programs utility.

  3. Choose the Windows Setup tab, then click on the Have Disk button.

  4. Enter the path to the Clients\Srvtools\Win95 directory (such as H:\Clients\Srvtools\Win95) on the CD-ROM.

  5. Choose OK, then select the Windows NT Server Tools check box.

  6. Select Install, then click OK.

  7. The administrative tools are installed in the \Srvtools directory on the same drive as the Windows 95 operating system. In the Windows NT Server Tools folder, you'll find icons for using the tools.

Using Administrative Wizards

Administrative wizards are designed to automate key system administration tasks. Wizards are presented as a series of dialog boxes that you can use to manage local and remote systems. To access the wizards, select Start, then choose Administrative Wizards from the Administrative Tools (Common) submenu on the Programs menu.

Figure 1-2 shows the main dialog box for the administrative wizards. As you can see, eight wizards are available. These are

  • Add Printer Configures local and network printers.

  • Add User Accounts Creates new user accounts in a specified Windows NT domain.

  • Add/Remove Programs Starts the Add/Remove Programs Control Panel utility.

  • Group Management Manages local and global group accounts.

  • Install New Modem Starts the Modems Control Panel utility.

  • License Compliance Checks a system's license compliance.

  • Managing File and Folder Access Manages folder permissions and share resources on local and remote systems.

  • Network Client Administrator Starts the Network Client Administrator utility, which is normally located in the Administrative Tools (Common) folder.


    Figure 1-2: Administrative wizards help you accomplish key administration tasks.

Using Command-Line Utilities

Many command-line utilities are included with Windows NT. Most of the utilities you'll work with as an administrator rely on the TCP/IP Protocol. Because of this you should install TCP/IP networking, as explained in Chapter 12, before you experiment with these tools.

As an administrator, you should familiarize yourself with the following command-line utilities:

  • AT Schedules programs to run automatically.

  • FTP Starts the built-in FTP client.

  • HOSTNAME Displays the computer name of the local system.

  • IPCONFIG Displays the TCP/IP properties for network adapters installed on the system. Can also be used to renew and release DHCP information.

  • NBTSTAT Displays statistics and current connections for NetBIOS over TCP/IP.

  • NET Displays a family of useful networking commands.

  • NETSTAT Displays current TCP/IP connections and protocol statistics.

  • NSLOOKUP Checks the status of a host or IP address when used with DNS.

  • PING Tests the connection to a remote host.

  • ROUTE Manages the routing tables on the system.

  • TRACERT During testing, determines the network path taken to a remote host.

Using NET Tools

Most of the tasks performed with the NET commands are more easily managed using graphical administrative tools and Control Panel utilities. However, some of the NET tools are very useful for performing tasks quickly or obtaining information, especially during telnet sessions to remote systems. These commands include

  • NET SEND Sends messages to users logged in to a particular system.

  • NET START Starts a service on the system.

  • NET STOP Stops a service on the system.

  • NET TIME Displays the current system time or synchronizes the system time with another computer.

  • NET USE Connects and disconnects from a shared resource.

  • NET VIEW Displays a list of network resources available to the system.

To learn how to use any of the command-line tools, type the command name at the prompt without any flags. Windows NT will then provide an overview of how the command is used.

from Windows NT Administrator's Pocket Consultant by William R. Stanek. Copyright © 1999 Microsoft Corporation.

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