Network Inventory User's Guide

Managing Software Products

In Network Inventory, a Software Product record identifies a single application or a software suite that is tracked in your company’s software inventory. Each record contains software recognition rules used by the Automation Server to identify software products when processing audit snapshots. When a rule's condition results in a positive match, the Automation Server adds the corresponding product to the list of discovered installations for the audited computer.

When the Automation Server is unable to match information from the audit snapshot to any existing Software Product, it automatically adds a new product to the Software Catalog and generates its primary recognition rule based on the installation information from the audit snapshot. Depending on the operating system of the audited computer, the installation information for such primary rules is captured as follows:

  • Windows computers The Windows Inventory Analyzer collects installation information from the Uninstall section of the registry. This is the same information you can see in the Windows Add or Remove Programs tool.
  • Linux computers — The Linux Inventory Analyzer collects installation information from the package management system.
  • Mac OS computers — The Mac Inventory Analyzer uses software information provided by the System Profiler tool. This is the same information that users can see by clicking More Info under Apple Menu > About This Mac.

For example, Alloy Navigator 8.3.0 detected in the Windows registry will produce the following auto-generated rule:

(Product Name in Registry IS Alloy Navigator 8.3.0) AND (Product Publisher in Registry IS Alloy Software, Inc.) AND (Product Version in Registry IS 8.*)

Additionally, the Automation Server populates the Software Manufacturers list using the publisher information from recognized software products.

Auto-generated software recognition rules differentiate only product major releases to keep Software Catalog uncluttered. When minor releases are important, you must change the auto-generated recognition rule by replacing the asterisk (*) in the default value of the Product Version field with the minor release or update identifier that you want to distinguish.

All auto-created Software Products are initially marked as New. You can use this flag to easily identify newly detected and added products. After you have reviewed these products and customized their recognition rules as needed, you can clear the New flag.

INFO: For details, see Modifying Software Products, Classification of Software Products, and Modifying Software Recognition Rules.