In-depth network discovery made easy using runZero

(updated )   //   Review

Overview #

In this video, Tom Lawrence reviews the advanced network discovery features of runZero.

With its support for multi-tenant and multi-user environments, runZero is tailored to meet the needs of organizations of all sizes. Experience the convenience of scanning various network devices, including printers, switches, and servers, to gain a complete understanding of your network’s status and bolster its security.

One of runZero’s standout features lies in its versatile reporting capabilities. Utilize its subnet utilization reports to optimize network resources effectively. Uncover software discoveries with its software discovery reports, ensuring full visibility of your network’s software landscape. In addition, leverage the network bridge reports and network switch reports to gain valuable insights into network topology and performance.

Tom Lawrence enthusiastically encourages a hands-on approach. Embark on your network management journey by exploring runZero’s capabilities with our free trial offer. Whether you’re an IT professional, network administrator, or security expert, runZero is here to elevate your network management and establish a secure environment.


Hey everyone, it’s Tommy from Lawrence Systems. Today I want to talk to you about a tool called runZero. I did a video on this tool back in July of 2021, and I was pretty blown away with just how well it worked at doing asset discovery of devices on your network. It’s a pretty amazing product, and I just renewed my license, so I wanted to throw that out there. This is not a sponsored video. I actually pay for and integrate this into our stack of tools that we use at my company.

Now, I wanted to be up front and very clear about the purpose and any of the driving biases I have towards any of the products I talk about. Speaking of driving biases, yes, I’m biased. I like this product, which is why I’m doing the updated video.

Originally, it was called Rumble in 2021, and it was built by HD Moore. I found it on the Risky Business podcast. Those are a lot of little interesting tidbits that I’ll leave a link down below if you want to listen to the Risky Business podcast or listen to The Dark Knight Diaries episode to learn a little bit more about who HD Moore is.

Now, when certain people create tools, it creates a level of interest to me because, well, having the hacking background means they usually build really focused, useful tools. Fast forward to November of 2022, when we’re recording this video now, and the tool has matured quite a bit. It’s become a lot prettier, with a lot of integrations. The significant changes are going to be just how much they’ve expanded what they can discover, the protocols they use for distributions. It’s more than just Linux x64. It also does 32-bit, several variations of ARM and MIPS, PowerPC, and s390x IBM Z, so it’s pretty well supported here in terms of options.

Now, let’s talk about the registered explorers. It will tell you if the Explorer is out of date. So, the latest version is 33. This was only run once, and this was set up as a project. When you’re building out the client or the site that you need to do, you start with building it either as an organization or as a project. If we go here and we just create a new project, for example, the projects are a project that becomes read-only after 30 days and automatically deleted after 90. These are great for doing client discoveries. This is something we’ll use them for or limited engagements we have with a client where it’s a project that they want us to help redo something on a network and the first step, of course, is figuring out where everything is on the network, documenting it, and then coming up with a plan to do this. Hopefully, it takes you less than 30 days to get this done. Generally, it does, but at least starting as that. Also, projects can be converted over to organizations. There’s a way you can take these and take this project, for example, which is the IT Nation project, and down here, which says, “I wonder what I can find at IT Nation 22 WiFi.” You can put some descriptions in here, but if I wanted to, I can promote it to an organization. There’s a button right here. So, if that project takes longer, you want to promote it there or delete it later, that’s definitely an option.

Now, let’s talk about an organization that I’ve set up, which is called LTS Tom. Normally, I’d hit this pull-down, there’s a long, long list here. They have granular permission, so I created this user called YouTube demo and said you only have permission to these two things, but this does support multi-tenant, supports multi-user, so we have all of our users set up and configured, and you can decide what sites you want to give them permission to view. So, that’s running continuously, and you know there’s a problem with a product that you have to figure out is across your networks. Really great to be able to quickly find and drill into any of those types of assets, and this goes across really any of them.

Right next to it is the copy value to clipboard. This shouldn’t be overlooked. I mean, yeah, I can do this, and I do this way too much, but being able to just quickly click and copy to the clipboard that is often overlooked. I’ve talked about this in XCP-ng, and the team at XCP-ng puts this all over the place in there since I don’t know. It’s those little things that make a big difference on being a time-saver.

Another thing that’s a big time-saver on any of this is any of these how it says console, inventory, view assets. If we take this out of full screen, you can see this URL at the top. And this URL at the top is actually really handy because then I can also, with my other people that are logged in at my staff, throw this right back at them. And if you have it set up, you can actually tell it to open an application from there and launch SSH or HTTP to go right to the asset. It’s all these little conveniences because the goal is always having time-saving ways to get these things done, which is part of the reason I really like a lot of this.

Now, it’s IBC because I’ve got it zoomed in, scrolling quite a bit across, but you also have things like how it was detected, ping, our first seen, last seen, based on how long you’ve been running these. I actually started to do this demo video a few months ago with this particular demo client, then I got sidetracked, and renewing my license for the tool reminded me of, hey, I should probably do an updated video.

Now, going down here to software, it’s not doing, like, a software inventory necessarily of each machine. It’s not that type of software inventory. It’s a discovery software inventory for things like, “Hey, we’re running AirTunes on this particular device,” or “We see OpenSSL in GenX NTP.” So, it gives you a lot, and that’s really how you network. Those things are sometimes going, “Huh, that’s interesting.” I like having those discovery moments like that. I’ve certainly had it a couple of times with this.

Nonetheless, as always, if you want to have a more in-depth discussion about this topic or any other topic I talk about on my channel, head over to my forums. And I’ll see you next time. Thanks, and thank you for making it all the way to the end of this video. If you’ve enjoyed the content, please give us a thumbs up.

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