The Microsoft Management Console
, or MMC
is a utility that ships with Microsoft Windows
that allows for the use of administrative tools in a clear, organizable way.
The Microsoft Management Console can run in two different modes: user mode
and author mode
. The user mode loads a pre-made console
that contains any number of snap-ins
, ActiveX Control
s, folders, links to webpages
, tasks, and taskpad views. The author mode allows for the creation of a new console.
When run in user mode, the MMC
loads a console, which contains various administrative tasks, as described above. The console, saved as a .MSC
file, is loaded through the MMC, which essentially acts as an interpreter. Inside of the console are snap-ins. Snap-ins are interfaces to tasks such as the device manager
, the disk management
, the local and domain user management
, and the system services. In addition to this, the above listed items (ActiveX controls, etc.) can also be present in a console.
In Windows 2000
and higher, all of the Administrative Tools
use the Microsoft Management Console. The main reason for this is both to create a standard on Windows for managing system/administrative tasks, but also to allow administrators
to create their own MMC consoles and edit existing consoles for custom tasks. A particular upshot of this, aside from greater customization
, is that the administrator can create a console with specific tasks for users with less privledges than the administrator, without having to give needless permissions.
MMC consoles appear in a two-pane window with administrative tasks listed on the left in a tree-view
and details or options for the selected task on the right.