Nmap (Network Mapper)

Nmap is an open-source network scanning tool widely used in the field of network security. It’s designed to discover devices and services on a network, providing detailed information about network infrastructure and security vulnerabilities.

Image of NMap code

From nmap5-samplescan-706×964.png (706×964)

Basic Use:

  1. Network Inventory: Nmap is used to create an inventory of all devices connected to a network, including servers, workstations, network printers, routers, and switches.
  2. Security Auditing: It helps in identifying open ports, detecting the operating systems and software versions running on network devices, and consequently uncovering potential security vulnerabilities.
  3. Network Mapping: Nmap is employed to map out the layout of a network, showing how various devices are connected and communicating.
  4. Identifying Unauthorized Devices: It can detect unauthorized devices connected to a network, enhancing network security.
  5. Service Upgrade Schedules: By determining the software versions on network devices, it aids in planning service upgrades or patches.


Zenmap is the official graphical user interface (GUI) for the Nmap Security Scanner. It aims to make Nmap easier to use for beginners while providing advanced features for experienced Nmap users.

Image of ZenMap GUI from zenmap-multi-scaled-915×525.png (915×525)

Basic Use:

  1. Simplified Scanning: Zenmap simplifies the process of running Nmap scans by providing a user-friendly interface, making it more accessible to those who are less comfortable with command-line tools.
  2. Scan Analysis: It offers features for analyzing and visualizing the results of Nmap scans, such as network topologies and host details.
  3. Comparing Scan Results: Zenmap can compare the results of different scans to track changes in a network over time. This feature is particularly useful for monitoring network modifications and identifying new or altered devices and services.
  4. Saved Profiles and Scans: Users can save specific scan configurations as profiles for quick and consistent execution of routine scans.
  5. Target Testing: It can be used to test a specific device or range of devices on a network, allowing for focused security assessments.

Both Nmap and Zenmap are critical tools in the toolkit of network administrators, security professionals, and penetration testers. They offer powerful capabilities for network discovery, security auditing, and vulnerability detection.