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#1 etrustxps  Icon User is offline

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What language?

Posted 19 November 2013 - 09:56 PM

Hello, new to this forum. I'm a general IT guy not a programmer/developer, need some guidance for a non-for profit organization.

This is to be outsourced and need to know what language to look for.

I need to find out what do you guys/gals suggest as a base language for this software.

What is needed is a lightweight client side application that gathers PC usage information, things such as; applications used, amount of times used, web sites most visited, how many hours computer was used, number of users that logged in per day and how many hours idle on. We would like this to be able to report to a web based site dashboard in cloud, something like Amazon web or other host.

Have no idea what language would be able to do this the most efficiently possible.

Thanks everyone for your time and help!

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#2 modi123_1  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 19 November 2013 - 10:04 PM

I assume you mean only windows boxes? I am guessing something along the lines of c++.
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#3 etrustxps  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 19 November 2013 - 10:06 PM

Yes, Windows boxes XP and Win 7. Although in the far future if possible mobile devices iPhone/tablets...
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#4 modi123_1  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 19 November 2013 - 10:12 PM

The mobile platforms will need their own native languages for something that sort of low level.. even if it is possible at all and they are able to break out of the sandbox each app runs in.
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#5 Skydiver  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 19 November 2013 - 11:43 PM

Except for the websites most visited, you can get most of that information from Windows using WMI which is accessible from almost any language that can talk to a COM interface. The websites most visited will probably require installing a proxy on the machine or some type of network device driver. Fiddler is an excellent example that a proxy can be written in C#. I think that only leaves the network driver which will need to be in some thing that is unmanaged and require C/C++.

As a quick out of the box suggestion: Have you approached Microsoft directly? They are very generous about donating software to non-profits, and if you move quickly I think you can catch the tail end of this year's giving campaign. I think that Microsoft Systems Manager or whatever it is called nowadays will fulfill most of what you need.
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#6 etrustxps  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 20 November 2013 - 09:24 PM

View PostSkydiver, on 19 November 2013 - 11:43 PM, said:

Except for the websites most visited, you can get most of that information from Windows using WMI which is accessible from almost any language that can talk to a COM interface. The websites most visited will probably require installing a proxy on the machine or some type of network device driver. Fiddler is an excellent example that a proxy can be written in C#. I think that only leaves the network driver which will need to be in some thing that is unmanaged and require C/C++.

As a quick out of the box suggestion: Have you approached Microsoft directly? They are very generous about donating software to non-profits, and if you move quickly I think you can catch the tail end of this year's giving campaign. I think that Microsoft Systems Manager or whatever it is called nowadays will fulfill most of what you need.


Thanks everyone for your replies.

Yes, the mobile aspect is far down the road if at all, just a thought.

Skydiver; Would just getting time browser used, which browser ect.. require driver work as well or can be done with WMI? Regarding the Microsoft approach, what department or area would that be? They are mega corp and don't even know where to look, I never see contact info on their pages. Thanks again!
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#7 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 20 November 2013 - 10:39 PM

I can't offer any specific suggestions, since Windows is not my bag, but what Skydiver says sounds reasonable.

I would point out that you're getting advice in terms of existing software packages, and not in terms of new development. This is the correct direction for you to be looking. Software development is expensive and difficult, and it takes a lot of time and a lot of attention from both the developer and the client. Unless you have no other choice, it's really best to stay away from it, as it's likely to take a lot of effectiveness away from your organization's actual goals.

In this case, it's very likely that other people have needed similar sorts of functionality, and it will certainly be easier to find those people and find out what they did to meet that need than to commission a new product.

At most, you might need to piece together some sort of reporting tool that would gather up data produced by existing packages. For this, you might consider a tool like splunk, which is used for "diving into and exploring" log files. If you find a constellation of packages which produce logs that are interesting to you, then splunk can be a very useful tool for analyzing that data.
I'm thinking, for example, that this might be useful if your network traffic is routed through a central point on its way to the world.
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#8 Skydiver  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 20 November 2013 - 11:06 PM

Here's a link to a page that should give you a starting point: http://www.microsoft...ware-donations/
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#9 etrustxps  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 21 November 2013 - 05:05 AM

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 20 November 2013 - 10:39 PM, said:

I can't offer any specific suggestions, since Windows is not my bag, but what Skydiver says sounds reasonable.

I would point out that you're getting advice in terms of existing software packages, and not in terms of new development. This is the correct direction for you to be looking. Software development is expensive and difficult, and it takes a lot of time and a lot of attention from both the developer and the client. Unless you have no other choice, it's really best to stay away from it, as it's likely to take a lot of effectiveness away from your organization's actual goals.

In this case, it's very likely that other people have needed similar sorts of functionality, and it will certainly be easier to find those people and find out what they did to meet that need than to commission a new product.

At most, you might need to piece together some sort of reporting tool that would gather up data produced by existing packages. For this, you might consider a tool like splunk, which is used for "diving into and exploring" log files. If you find a constellation of packages which produce logs that are interesting to you, then splunk can be a very useful tool for analyzing that data.
I'm thinking, for example, that this might be useful if your network traffic is routed through a central point on its way to the world.

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#10 etrustxps  Icon User is offline

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Re: What language?

Posted 21 November 2013 - 05:10 AM

Thank you for the replies!

We have looked for something that accomplishes this with no luck, that's mainly why we are looking for development, we have a lot of sites.

Do any of your experience with website that facilitate hiring of developer ? There are a few out there that provide this matching service and wondering if you have any tips.

Skydiver thank you for the link.
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