A computer system to track cases finally worked for the FBI. After years of delays, the nation's premier law enforcement agency and its 13,000 agents are abandoning paper-based case management for electronic case files.

Sentinel, as it's called, makes new case information and intelligence available more quickly to agents and analysts. And the search capabilities seem impressive, at least to a group of reporters who watched a quick run-through of the technology at bureau headquarters on Tuesday. Sentinel was put on line for all employees on July 1.

Originally, Sentinel was expected to cost $425 million and be completed by December 2009. It ended up at $451 million and 2 ½ years overdue.