NetIQ, a systems and security management software vendor recently released new versions of two key products that enable IT organizations to more efficiently manage and secure Microsoft Active Directory environments. These new products are NetIQ Directory and Resource Administrator 8.5 and NetIQ Group Policy Administrator 6.1. Both products are designed to help IT organizations solve the challenges they face when tasked with the native management, administration and security of Microsoft Active Directory. As they push the limits of this technology, ensuring security and internal controls becomes most critical to not only manage user access, but to eliminate human error, demonstrate compliance, and improve service delivery.
NetIQ Directory and Resource Administrator 8.5 granularly controls and delegates administrative and end-user privilege. It centralizes auditing and reporting, automates repetitive activities such as user provisioning and password and privilege management, and enforces security and management policies.
NetIQ Group Policy Administrator provides a secure off-line repository for modeling the impact of potential group policy changes on the overall Active Directory environment. Active Directory does not provide this modeling capability natively and once a change is made there is no provision for easily going back and reversing it. With the advanced granular off-line modeling and analysis capability provided by Group Policy Administrator, organizations can better predict the impact of Group Policy Objects to their production environment, more efficiently achieve compliance, and minimize service interruptions.
Erin Avery, product marketing manager for NetIQ, tells 5 Minute Briefing that "as organizations become larger, it becomes more complex and difficult to secure and control the administration of Microsoft Active Directory natively. In order to help with this, NetIQ Directory and Resource Administrator and Group Policy Administrator have been developed to provide controls and checks for Active Directory deployments. Directory and Resource Administrator provides very granular levels of control to manage and view the system access privileges of every user in the organization. It also has expanded auditing and reporting capabilities and leaves a complete audit trail of all user privilege changes over time. Group Policy Administrator enables administrators to configure security standards across an entire company and to model the impact of potential changes before they are put into production. Both products help to minimize the potential for human error in managing Active Directory by offering expanded automation for provisioning and updating system access privileges."
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