Windows has very comprehensive network capabilities – a necessity in corporate environment, where it thrives. On other hand managing network settings is far from convenient. That hits notebook users especially hard and some manufacturers try to provide OEM software for network management with their machines.
Another alternative is using dedicated network settings manager app like NetSetMan.
What it does
App allows you to configure multiply profiles of settings for network adapters and switch between them. On top of core IP settings it can also manage multiply additional settings, including:
- PC name;
- active printer;
- adapter status (to turn off WiFi when not needed for example);'
- and more.
There are two interface modes. The one that shows at start is used for configuration. Compact mode is streamlined to only show profiles and switch between them.
Profiles can also be switched from tray menu or with command line parameters.
NetSetMans really goes extra mile with functionality. In addition to network settings it can also manage such advanced stuff like:
- mapped network drives;
- content of hosts file;
- run arbitrary user scripts (any OS-supported language, which makes batch best candidate or VBS for more complex scenarios).
There is native portable installation option and flexible administration options to run it under limited user accounts.
There is a menu option to quickly import existing network settings, but it fails with cryptic RPC error on both my desktop and notebook. Worked fine when I tried it at work, so I can only conclude it conflicts with some application or configuration option I use. Was unable to narrow it down so far.
Free version limitations
Free version has no limitations, but is licensed for non-commercial use only.
There is also paid commercial version that adds few more functions like domain settings and proxy management.
Very solid and highly functional application, slightly held back by non-commercial license.