ARI AdvancedRemoteInfo (ARI) lets you access all kinds of information remotely from a Windows machine. You can do similar things with Windows’ Computer Management tool, but ARI represents everything in a clearly arranged table which allows you to get an overview of a Windows machine quickly. Furthermore, ARI has some additional features like the batch mode or the remote screenshot feature.

ARI has eight panes: Overview, Process, Services, Drivers, Software, Shares, User and Groups. The Overview displays information such as the DNS name, MAC-Address, UP-time, registered owner, logon server, logged on user, and many more. You can also send messages to the user who is logged on. Please check out the screenshot for more.

The process tab lists all processes of the remote machine and enables you to start and end processes remotely. The services pane has the same functionality. Under “Drives” you see all storage media with their size and their available capacity. The software pane displays all installed programs, but not all of them can be uninstalled via ARI. Actually, I didn’t find a program which could be uninstalled. The shares tab allows you to add and delete shares. The last tab shows all users and groups. Unfortunately, you can’t add or delete users here.

ARI also allows you to start a couple of Windows management tools. You can launch Computer Management, initiate a Remote Desktop connection to the last scanned computer, edit its registry and access the event log.

It is also possible to take a screenshot from the remote desktop. However, this only works if you install the screenshot extension on the local computer. I suppose it wasn’t integrated into ARI because of privacy considerations. The user on the remote desktop doesn’t notice if you take a screenshot. Thus, I would be careful about using this feature. Don’t do it without the user’s permission!

Another interesting feature of ARI is its batch mode. It allows you to perform several operations on multiple computers. Computer names can be added manually or imported from a text file. You can send messages to users, shut down and restart computers, and scan computers for information and installed software. The results will be exported to a text file.

ARI has one major downside. It doesn’t support Windows Vista. You can run the tool on Vista, but it will be a bit unstable. You also can scan Vista machines, but ARI will only be able to retrieve limited information. This won’t bother those of you who want to skip Vista anyway. But it is annoying that every time one starts the ARI, it asks you for downloading the latest version even though there is none. However, I really hope that ARI’s author, Matthias Zirngibl, will update the tool again. This review is about version 0.6.5.7

I wonder if there are comparable tools out there that support Vista. If you know of a free one, you can submit it here, leave a comment to this post, or leave me a note via my contact form. I will have a look at it and add it to the 4sysops list of free admin tools. If you have a favorite commercial tool with similar functionality, it would also be nice if you’d share your experience.

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AdvancedRemoteInfo

17 Comments
  1. Jackie 14 years ago

    I can’t run ARI on my Windows XP.

  2. What error message did you get?

  3. Jackie 14 years ago

    I forgot the exact message, it looked like some files were missing.

  4. ARI hasn’t been updated for quite some time. Perhaps it is not compatible with all language editions.

  5. Matthias Zirngibl 14 years ago

    Hi all,

    thanks for your review.

    I updated ARI last weekend! At the moment, i dont have the possibility to test with Vista. I hope that i can do that soon and fix the issues…

  6. Matthias, thanks for the info. What did you change? Did you add new features?

  7. Matthias Zirngibl 14 years ago

    No, just some minor bugs killed and the version info updated… Next update will come soone because of false positives of some virus scanners.

  8. RoninV 14 years ago

    This sounds great, based on the write up here. I use Solarwinds IP Address Tracker to note all the available IPs in our subnets, which was suppose to do away with my spreadsheet listing of IP/computername/username. IP Address Tracker does not always give the DNS (computername) of each computer, and it does not give the username of the user logged in at the time of the scan. I have to (1) go to Computer Management to confirm the username/computername combination, (2) go back to Solarwinds and hope that the computername is listed with the IP address, which then allows me to remote in to the “ailing” computer. If ARI can do its thing, that would be great. Of course, I am part of the ARI downside (Vista). Is the Vista “compatible” version available?

  9. RoninV 14 years ago

    I just rec’d an email from Matthias Zirngibl, indicating that version 0.7.0.1 is available. The download link on the website redirects you to Rapidshare FileHosting, where it can be downloaded for free. Not sure if it solved the Vista issue, but I’m hoping…

  10. Matthias Zirngibl 14 years ago

    Hi,
    i’m also reading the comments here. Please remove my E-Mail-Adress from the comments. I like to keep spam out of this mailbox…

  11. Matthias, there is a link to the subscription manager in every e-mail. There is also one below the comment box. Besides, there is no such thing as a spam free mailbox. 😉

  12. Matthias Zirngibl 14 years ago

    Yeah i know. But please remove the clear text E-Mail-Address from Comment #10.

  13. Sorry, misunderstood you. I removed your email address now.

  14. Ronin Vladiamhe 14 years ago

    My bad! I included the email address, when I received the response regarding Vista compatibility because, (1) I was not sure the Zirngibl that responded to my external email inquiry was the same as the one posting here, and (2) the app had to be downloaded from RapidShare, and until now, I had never downloaded anything from that site (cautious).

  15. Matthias Zirngibl 14 years ago

    I’m the same Zirngibl 😉 I uploaded ARI to Rapidshare to preserve the bandwith of my Server. You can also download it from there if you want: http://masterbootrecord.de/files/ARISetup0701.exe (it’s always the same naming convention for new versions).

  16. RoninV 14 years ago

    Support for this app is nearly non-existent, and the FAQs are in German (there is a link to a free translator). Two questions: (1) Which fields can one use to search the network? For example, if I wanted to use ARI on a user’s computer, could I input the user’s “username” and have the other fields populate once ARI has found the system on our network? (2) Of course, is this portable?

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