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On two of our selected systems, Retina simply went berserk, reporting hundreds of nonexistent TCP and UDP services, which casts doubt on the accuracy of everything it did.
SAINT generally did an excellent job, even finding some services that the others missed (for example, an SMTP server hidden on port 2525).
In testing outside the firewall, Nessus offers the best control, with six port-scanning techniques, from simple ping to SNMP discovery to actually trying a TCP connection.
e Eye's Retina allows you to scan a host even if it doesn't respond to ping packets.
Some are more devious, and will try to evade a network IDS.
Mapping the Network The first task of a vulnerability analyzer is to discover what's on the network, and what it's running.
Smarter products iterate between phases two and three, learning more and using that information to launch additional tests.
Many security managers first see the results of a vulnerability analyzer when a consultant drops an annual audit report on their desk.
But as January's SQL Slammer worm reminded us, exploits aren't timed to coincide with audits.
As the number of security threats to networks and servers grows, security managers have turned to vulnerability analysis tools to identify a wide variety of potential problems on their networks.
While host-oriented patch tools such as Update EXPERT from St.
However, its internal database was confused by a DNS trap we laid for it, and one system couldn't be scanned or reported on by IP number or DNS name.