September 2012 - How to reorder column headers in results grids

This months Hints and Tips topic explains how to use 'drag and drop' column headers in grid style results.

Did you know that you can change the order of the columns in Traceroute results? Or Ping or Port Scanner? - there is an easy way to do it - use your mouse to click on the header, hold down the button and drag the whole column right or left. The column reordering is only good for the life of the session, but it's still useful.

August 2012 - How to use System Info - SMB to see Windows account information

This months Hints and Tips topic explains how to use NetScanTools Pro's System Info - SMB tool.

We sometimes get the question 'How can I see the user accounts on another Windows computer?' - there is no easy way. Several years ago the operating systems were tightened so that more privileges were required to access things that were formerly simple to get. Things like user lists, account policies, user groups, system time, shared open files, etc. Those things are all still available, but you need valid access credentials to access them - an even that's not a 100% guarantee that you will get everything you want.

If you go to the Manual Tools/System Info - SMB tool and put in a Windows computer name 'OldDell' (no quotes) or the actual IPv4 address, then press Get Info, you will likely see a bunch of errors in the list of possible results. Most often type 5 - access is denied.

Just to see what is possible to get from another computer, put in 'localhost' and press Get Info. The user account information shows up now.

In order to get the information from the computers that give you 'access is denied', we have provided a way to login by using 'Connect As'. You press 'Connect As', then enter the Windows computer name 'accounting\username' (no quotes, accounting is the computer name), then the password and press OK. If you can login, you will see Connection Successful. Now go back and press Get Info for that computer name. You should see much more information. Press Disconnect when you are finished. Obviously, you have to know an account on the target and for best results it needs to be an administrator privileges account.

This tool uses SMB (server message block) protocol to communicate over TCP/IP and NetBIOS sessions to retrieve the information - hence, the name of the tool.

July 2012 - How to Use NetScanTools Pro v11 Port Scanner

This month's Hints and Tips topic is about how to use NetScanTools Pro's Port Scanner tool.

If you haven't used it since v10, you may be in for a surprise. It was totally rewritten from the ground up and you may need some help understanding how to use it in v11.

First, familiarize yourself with Settings. The Scan Modes are the same as before. The scan speed control is there giving you access to the parallel test connections (each port is tested by a separate test element called a 'thread') and the Delay between launching each individual port test thread. If you want to ping the target before scanning it, you can change those settings too.

Scanning a single IP over a port range is pretty much the same. You input the port start and end, select the scan mode (tcp, udp or other), enter the target IP or hostname, check the timeouts then press Scan Range of Ports.

The results can be toggled between showing the results for all ports or just the responding ports by checking the box above the data.

You can also scan a list of ports on a single IP. Press Edit Common Ports List to see the current list of ports. Change the list to your favorite ports. Don't forget to select TCP or UDP. Then close the editor. Make all the same settings as for scanning a range EXCEPT press Scan Common Ports. Again, you can toggle the results view. Don't forget the right click option in the results for a number of other things you can do.

Suppose you need to scan a range or list of IPs using either the range of ports or the list of ports. That part really changed. Here is how to do it:

First you have to define the list of IPs. Press 'Edit Target List' to define them. You can create a range of IPs or import a list IPs or manually enter them in. You can change their order. Make whatever changes you need. You can export the list to a text file for later reuse if you change the list frequently. Finish your list and go back to the main Port Scanner window. Most IMPORTANT: before scanning, check the box labeled 'Use Target List When Scanning'. You don't have to enter an IP or hostname. Decide whether you are using Scan Range of Ports or Scan Common Ports and press it. Watch it work.

Press the Notes button to add a note of any kind to a scan.

Reports. The reports will be enhanced a bit in 11.31 to make the text exporting work better and you will be able to decide to see only the responding ports in the browser or text reports. Right now it shows all ports scanned, responding or not.

Viewing a single report. Press reports, then double click on it in the list of available reports. Your report will show up in the default web browser.

Viewing a range of reports (required if you scanned a list of IPs). Right click on the oldest report you want to see and select 'Copy Reference from this row to Starting Reference above'. Now right click again on the newest report you want to see and select 'Copy Reference from this row to Ending Reference above'. In the Multiple Test Report Filter Parameters group, select the 'Range' radio button. Now go up and press View Multiple Test Reports Using Filter Parameters. The report will show up in your web browser. 11.31 will have some changes to this operation as I mentioned above.