Spiceworks is an IT monitoring and inventory system. Spiceworks Desktop is a web application that allows you to inventory, monitor, report on and troubleshoot your network. It features a lot of useful capabilities that some paid software can provide, at zero cost. Yes, Spiceworks is free to download and use.
Spiceworks welcome screen shows the dashboard where you see reports and snippets of the network. It can show all scanned network devices of the network, the printer devices, software inventory, antivirus deployed, the type of OS used on the computers, the hard disk level of scanned HDDs and storage from servers and PCs.
To be able to run a network-wide scan, you can set the IP range of the search, the administrator user credentials, and you will be able to start scanning your network. This feature is seen on standalone paid inventory software. You can check the OS installed on the system, and get all relevant information about that device. Windows computer events and errors can be displayed as well. Common functionality of the inventory included is to check the brand, the model, serial number, and warranty information.
One of the best features of this free tool is sending notifications to email. To IT admins, having these tool will greatly change the way they respond to non-user initiated checking request as the system can check important events of the network and report it immediately to the admin. By setting up the email on the setting, you can start receiving hard disk threshold reached notification, printer cartridge level low, warranty expiration warnings, suspicious traffics trying to connect to your server, and a lot more of options in its notification settings.
There are also add-ons that can be integrated to Spiceworks. One notable add-on is an add-on capable of reporting Active Directory changes.
For smaller networks, scanning is fast. However when trying to run a network scan on big networks, some devices are not found or the Spiceworks service would fail unlike paid or trial network scanner. However, having a working notification mechanism for network devices is still promising in aiding support staff about their network.