Monday Terry reviewed a Mac application for checking out what’s on your LAN. Looks pretty nice – I may pick it up. But cheapskate that I am, I have to mention a couple of free (for a limited time) apps you can get for your iPhone/iPod Touch and iPad.
Update: Looks like the HD version is no longer free.
Net Master and Net Master HD (for your iPhone/iPod or iPad, respectively) will do many (but not all) of the things in the app Terry mentioned. I used Net Master to scan my local LAN, and it found everything. It was able to identify everything by at least manufacturer, if not the device itself. For example, it found all my Macs, my Tivos (and identified them as Tivos), my Airport devices, my printers, my Blu-Ray player (as a Pioneer device), my TV (as a Samsung device), and even identified the Windows virtual machine I have running as a VMWare device.
You can tap on a device and get more information about it, such as if it has any NETBIOS or Bonjour services listed. You can also do a port scan to see if there any any security holes open on the device (ports open you aren’t expecting). If the device supports Wake on LAN (and Macs do, if you check the box for it in the Energy Saver preferences on your Mac), you can send it a wake up packet.
The program also lets you mail the results of the LAN scan (in text only). There are also utilities included for pinging devices (often a good way to see if you can reach the drive) and for tracing the route to the device. There’s also a handy IP subnet calculator (if, like me, you need to do this – but only occasionally – you’ll appreciate having this; admins who do this a lot can do it in their heads). Most folks will never need it, but it’s nice to have. There’s also a port scan for scanning ports on devices outside of your local LAN.
You can turn on and off what you’re scanning for (if you don’t need some scans, like for NETBIOS, you can turn them off) and change the timeouts for scan/pings/etc.
The iPad version (the “HD” version) just makes better use of the real estate on the screen – it doesn’t do anything different.
You won’t get the details you get in the Mac app – but if you hurry, you also won’t have to lay out any cash.