Equipped with Android remote control apps for network analysis, port scanning, remote access and PDF viewing, you and your tablet can become the A-team of the IT department.
IT management and administration apps
Analyzing networks and ports with Android remote control apps
Android tablets are excellent tools for analyzing wireless networks. There are two types of network analyzers: One type checks signal strength and available channels, and the other finds computers and the services they offer on the network.
One app, Wifi Analyzer, produces graphs that indicate the signal strength of surrounding networks. These graphs make it easy to tell if you have set up your access point properly, or if you need to change the direction of the antennas on the access point. Wifi Analyzer is even helpful before you set up a new access point; it will indicate which channels are busy and which ones aren’t.
There are also many port scanners available, which you can use to connect to a Wi-Fi network and start scanning. They produce a basic list showing all the devices currently within the same IP subnet (including those devices that are connected to the subnet via cable). From the base list, you can find the MAC address, name and type of the device, as well as the IP address. Selecting a device will show you more detailed information, such as the NetBIOS network information and the services the device offers.
These scanning and analyzing tools even run on smartphones, but the advantage of an Android tablet is the size of the screen, which helps make information and graphs more readable.
Android remote control and more with tablets
You can also connect to other computers and devices from your Android tablet, which comes in handy if you need to troubleshoot a user’s problem or access a server to monitor activity or change certain parameters. One great app for Android remote control is the free TeamViewer app. You can connect to any device that runs the TeamViewer control agent (which is also free).
Your Android tablet can still connect to a remote computer using the virtual network computing (VNC) system, which runs on any platform and allows users to establish a remote connection. Different VNC apps are available for Android tablets, including VNC Viewer.
To connect to a Linux or UNIX server, you can use ConnectBot as an alternative. This free secure shell (SSH) client connects to any server that runs an SSH process.
This was first published in January 2012