In this Group Test we have looked at a number of solutions, all designed to manage your critical policy management and to ensure corporate policy is adhered to across even the largest networks.
This particular solution is for Windows 2000 users only; it sets, manages and backs up policies across your whole network without the need for agents. Designed specifically to replace the built-in utilities that are provided with Windows 2000 networks, it also allows the management of multiple domains in unison.
Active Administrator enables the administrator to easily plan, deploy and troubleshoot group policy objects (GPOs) even before full deployment.
Default permissions on the objects in Active Directory are color coded so it is easy to identify modifications to written policies or rules. An administrator can also recreate GPOs in other domains with its 'copy' function - a feature that permits copying of a group policy to be placed in another domain for its use. This is particularly useful as you can create and test prior to copying it over. And, you can generate reports to enable a complete view of what permissions are in force for your user groups, view settings and a number of other very useful reports that will enable the administrator to wholly manage his or her system policy management.
When you install the software you can create a test environment enabling a successful deployment simply by using the copy feature. The resultant set of policy (RSoP) feature allows you to test your policy to ensure it is up to scratch making for an even easier trouble-free deployment. This will ensure all problems are ironed out prior to roll out and should save time and valuable resources. This, along with the many reports, ensures the administrator is well informed.
Active Administrator also has the ability to back up and restore individual GPOs or groups of GPOs, and all policies are therefore protected from system failures. It will allow the administrator to secure all domains quickly and effectively. All this can be achieved from a dedicated console to accomplish the management of all policies across the network.
With such granularity it isn't surprising that a search for individual permissions on groups and users can also be achieved; important if you want to find holes in your system that could provide a negative effect on your security.