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Microsoft updates Sysinternals with multiple desktops

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Microsoft has released several updates to its Sysinternals application suite, including version 2 of its popular Process Monitor tool.

The update brings real-time monitoring of any TCP and UDP connections made by processes, including the operation type (send, receive), IP address and DNS names.

The application was originally created from a collection of features taken from two pre-existing applications; Filemon and Regmon, which were developed by Mark Russinovich and Bryce Cogswell, and hosted on the private website, Sysinternals.

Microsoft purchased the site and the tools in 2006, and has offered the software for download from its own site since then.

As well as the recent release of Process Monitor, Microsoft also updated Sysinternals with the Desktops v1.0 tool, which allows 


Windows users to setup four separate desktops as in the Linux operating system.

"Unlike other virtual desktop utilities that implement their desktops by showing the windows that are active on a desktop and hiding the rest, Sysinternals Desktops uses a Windows desktop object for each desktop. Application windows are bound to a desktop object when they are created, so Windows maintains the connection between windows and desktops and knows which ones to show when you switch a desktop," says the application description on Microsoft's website.

However, the application has some rather severe limitations that make it less powerful than its Linux counterpart.

"Windows doesn't provide a way to move a window from one desktop object to another, and because a separate Explorer process must run on each desktop to provide a taskbar and start menu, most tray applications are only visible on the first desktop. Further, there is no way to delete a desktop object, so Desktops does not provide a way to close a desktop, because that would result in orphaned windows and processes."

Sysinternals co-founder Russinovich achieve notoriety in 2006 when he discovered that Sony had included a rootkit monitoring tool on some audio CDs.

Matthew Sparkes

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