Last Updated on 26 Aug. 2010, Company: Ecora Software
Ecora Patch Manager automatically identifies and patches critical server and workstation operating systems, databases, and applications. across your enterprise. It's features include: reporting center, test center, sure-scan, 3-d patch view, policy manager, alerting and patch rollback, amongst others. It has support for Sun Solaris, Windows NT/2000/XP/2003, MS-SQL Server, MSDE, Exchange 5.5 & 2000, Office 2000/XP, Windows Media Player, IE, IIS, and MDAC.
Ecora is by far the "Best of Breed"
I tested all the major products. Shavlik, Patchlink, St. Bernard, Hercules, BigFix and the list goes on and on. I took three things into consideration when testing and evaluating: functionality, reporting and cost. Although each Patch Management tool has different bells and whistles, I was only concerned with the core patching product. You should not judge a patching tool on whether it can make folders and files available on your network. You should judge a patching tool on how it patches your environment. Ecora is one of the only companies out there that offer agent based and agentless architecture. So you have the option of deploying agents or pushing patches out manually. There recent release of Patch Manager Version 4.0 puts them light years ahead of the competition. Ecora's GUI is easy on the eyes and easy to set up. I had everything installed and patching in my environment in four hours. What really sets Ecora apart from the competition is there reporting capabilites. No one touches there reports. I think there are 25 base reports and you can manipulate each report which gives you thousands of reporting options. I know WUSUS is free, but if you need accurate reports that are easy to read for admins or top level management, there's really no choice but Ecora. The pricing structure listed on this page is wrong. I was able to buy licenses for a 1,000 nodes for about $19,000. That included a year of maintenance and service. There perpetual maintenance and service plan is roughly 20% of the original cost for each additional year. Unlike St. Bernard, you don't have to purchase the software every year. There's also no "one time server fee" like Patchlink. They price everything per node (either a server or work station). I grilled these guys about the road map and they assure me that they'll be capable of handling most of the MS Legacy software by June 05' (Win 98 etc..). I would highly suggest running a POC on Ecora's Patch Manager 4.0 before buying one of the bug ridden competitors. Good luck and Happy patching!!
Horwitz Industrial Services
Ecora Patch Manager
Wow, you managed an in depth study of the newest version of Ecora less than 2 days after release! Kudos to you!
I'm also looking at Ecora for a large deployment (6k system), so I'm hoping you are right, but it would also be nice if you didn't work for Ecora.