Monday, November 18, 2013

Software: Sysinternals Free Utilities

Personally I am not a huge fan of using 3rd party utilities for performing most types of systems diagnostics. I like to rely on the OS's built-in tools as much as possible.  Primarily I don't want to be reliant on a utility that I might not have with me at the time or it requires some type of installation on a customer's system.

Although when I do have to rely on external utilities, one of the first sites I use is Sysinternals ( These are some of the better diagnostic and troubleshooting utilities available for Windows. Also, Mark Russinovich and his team are continuously updating the existing tools and creating new ones.

Besides being free and powerful tools, all (or most) of these utilities don't require that they be installed (this is known as being a 'portable application' because it can be moved between systems without installing it).

Sysinternals Suite
The tools on the site can be downloaded individually, or you can download the Sysinternals Suite which contains the latest versions of all the utilities in one package.  As of the writing of this article, below is a current list of the programs that come included within the suite (see below).    

Note: Text above is from the following page.

Sysinternals Live
The site offers a feature called 'Sysinternals Live' that provides quick access to the latest versions of all their free tools. You can download any of the utilities without having to unzip them. All you have to do is remember the following URL to download them
Tip: You can also attach like any other network mounted drive, and run the utilities directly from the Internet.
    • Open a command prompt (type CMD in the search field under the Start menu)
    • Type: net use * \\\tools\
    • You will see a message like "Drive Z: is now connected to \\\tools\"
    • Type drive letter and press return (i.e.: type Z: then press the Enter key)
    • Now type DIR and you will see all the utilities, or open the Windows Explorer and goto the Z: drive (or whatever drive letter the NET USE command gives you).

No comments: