Managing fewer than 50 PCs? Microsoft partner offers power management freeware

I'm actually surprised that more Microsoft-focused IT services firms haven't jumped on the power management platform. But one reason is probably that many of their customers tend to be on the smaller side.

I'm actually surprised that more Microsoft-focused IT services firms haven't jumped on the power management platform. But one reason is probably that many of their customers tend to be on the smaller side. NetWrix, a Microsoft Gold Certified partner in Paramus, New Jersey, has sidestepped this issue by creating two versions of its software: a commercial edition and a freeware version focused on environments with fewer than 50 systems under management.

The new NetWrix Workstation Power Saving Manager is a pretty simple utility: it automatically puts specified computers into a power-savings mode during off hours and then wakes them up again automatically at a designated time -- or when you need to use it. Doing this sort of thing can easily cut electricity costs by 30 percent, according to the company. (An average PC uses about $100 in electricity annually, according to the company's calculations.)

You can find the freeware version here. Pricing for the commercial edition starts around $5 per PC (for 150 systems) but adjusts for volume discounts.