Knowledge IT Support
Knowledge I.T

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?Proactive? Network Monitoring and Device Management

Monitoring and managing a network can be a mammoth task when dealing with differing operating systems and applications, which often span multiple locations. As with most dedicated I.T Support Services teams, we are expected to achieve more with less, with ever-tightening Operational budgets and strict Service Level Agreements (SLA’s).

Our customers often approach us looking to implement some form of reactive monitoring that provides them with an overview of service availability. Typically, this tends to be a requirement from senior management looking for information on targets and KPI (Key performance indicators).

With a multitude of monitoring tools available, such as Microsoft Operations Manager, WhatsUp Gold and Solarwinds, this can easily be achieved, but there are drawbacks. For example, monitoring tools come with an equal amount of required configuration; tuning and maintenance of these systems is often just as time-consuming to maintain as the monitored systems themselves.

Knowledge I.T has taken a different approach to monitoring and managing networks by adopting the Kaseya platform. We have invested a considerable amount of time and resource in developing this platform to meet the demands of our service delivery and customer’s requirements. We call this service, OneTouch.

With OneTouch, we’ve been able to implement a robust, scalable and automated monitoring platform. This platform has given us the ability to combine all of our remote management, reactive monitoring, reporting, patch management, deployment, auditing and much more under one single interface. This can be extended to our customers and even their end users to deliver a single pane of glass report on their availability and system status.

This move towards ‘proactive’, rather than ‘reactive’ monitoring, can be a difficult but necessary shift when trying to prevent downtime. With OneTouch, we are able to detect and correct incidents before they impact our client’s availability service levels. In addition, being able to identify events, raise alarms, collect relevant information and automate recovery across different servers, sites and even customers; has allowed us to take a huge leap-forward in proactive support. All of this can be done with little or no user interaction which drastically improves our resolution times thereby allowing us to deliver an unparalleled level of support and service to our customers.

In the past, maintaining such a powerful monitoring and management system meant a lot of configuration such as deploying management packs, thresholds, alerting and exceptions for each and every customer. With OneTouch, we’ve been able to dedicate our time to doing this on one single infrastructure that can then benefit all of our customers. This allows us to discover and correct issues on a global scale, which means system uptime is improved to ensure end users are able to get the most from their I.T, meaning they maximise their productivity.

As a Network Administrator, (or with my Net Admin hat on) monitoring security and user activity is one of the biggest headaches I have to deal with. There is a fine line between security event overflow and missing a key lockout, however, with the OneTouch system, we have the ability to integrate into Active Directory and are able to see and manage users more efficiently. Information such as the account state or what machine a user last logged into is available at the press of a button. We can also lock, unlock or reset passwords without the need to connect to site; this gives us real-time view on security and troubleshooting.

With mobile communication increasingly becoming the norm in enterprises and BYOD picking up speed, we’ve been given a new challenge to manage and support this rapidly expanding service. Again, OneTouch allows us to control and manage these devices across all the major mobile operating systems, giving the user end-to-end support whether they have an iPhone, Blackberry, Android or Windows phone. The ability to audit, track, enforce policies and of course, with sensitive data reaching out to these devices, the ability to wipe a device, is an absolute must.

Our move to OneTouch has not only brought all of our remote monitoring and management tools under one roof; it has also allowed us to truly implement some innovative solutions to complex problems. Great progress has been made and I’m excited to say there is a lot more to come.

By Paul Wilkinson (Support Services Team Leader, Knowledge I.T)

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Knowledge I.T .

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