RT vs

Hi,

Let me first say I am being sincere here with my questions. I simply
wish to find reasons to keep RT over Track-IT. It’s solid and does a
good job.

Need your thoughts. I wish to keep RT, unfortunately it seems it’s not a
case of apple for apples, and my workmate puts together some good points
and Track-IT seems feature rich. Mind you that unlike what he says about
us putting RT in to get us started was crap. No one in their right mind
installs RT on Mandrake linux as a short term stop gap.

The way he puts things makes track-it definitely is much more feature rich.
From what he says below, Track-it seems to be much more than just a
helpdesk.

Any points in favour of RT?
Anyone usedTrack-IT or know about it?
Anything better than these two products?
Anyone contract offer setup support for RT? As the prices my workmate
found on the Bestpracticle site are beyond our scope

Your thoughts? Please note that when I drafted my email to him, I did
not know what exactly the product was he was looking at.

Begin my original message

  Over the weekend I enabled the following in RT:

  1. Job - Escalation

      o Jobs are escalated every 24 hours. They are set to highest
        priority after 4 days (I est 4 days to be when we have
        resolved most jobs by.)

  2. End user - Self service web interface - users can check / add
  jobs to the queue - requested by Pauld

  3. Reminded - via email - sends a list of open/new jobs with
  priorities to the help desk operator

      o You are reminded via email about the following:
      o New jobs from two days of creation
      o Jobs still open every 7 days

  Other requests Todo.

      o Knowledge base - is installed not yet configured.
      o Add sender's name to his/her job in the "new" jobs list in
        the queue
      o Enable Active directory authentication for Self Service web
        interface.

  Customisation
  The system supports overlays, so one can customize any aspect of
  the helpdesk with little interruption to future upgrades. Nice
  feature. ie. Someone on the list is working on a wizard interface 

(rather than
standard web interface) for users. Users can use a wizard to guide
them though the steps of adding jobs to the helpdesk.

  Clarification on Friday's meeting
  In relation to changing helpdesk systems, I'm not sure I explained
  my view clearly in the meeting, as the thought of replacing the
  helpdesk came as a surprise, especially after the pressure
  involved in getting it up and running earlier this year. I'd love
  to see what this other help desk systems offers, however at this
  stage, I'm not convinced investing $5,000.00+ for a new helpdesk
  will offer any significantly better benefits other than some basic
  features (remote desktop, etc) already offered by Microsoft and
  others for free.

  One question raised in the meeting was that of having time to
  enable helpdesk features in a timely manner. In addition to us
  looking at this other helpdesk system, I'd like to get costs for
  commercial support for the existing RT helpdesk system? As the
  company that offers this product away also offers commercial
  support. I think there are others too. I'd believe this could be
  cost effective way of getting all the features we need.




  Andrew,

  Can you email me web site of the new helpdesk mentioned in the
  meeting for assessment. TA

Workmates reply to my original email -------------------------------

I do not think that the RT Helpdesk has the ability to cover all aspects
of what we require. I think it is a great Free Package. But being free
does not mean that it is really free. The reason RT was deployed was
because we needed something to start tracking the work load and it has
done that job to an extent. It has also enabled us to develop a better
understanding of how helpdesk software works, and what we require as an
application with time for configuration and maintenance. Here is the
cost for installation support from the RT Helpdesk website_
http://www.bestpractical.com_ .

As the creator of RT and its related products, we are the most
knowledgeable company around when it comes to installing RT and RT-based
technologies.

      o $2000 for up to six hours of installation and
        installation-related troubleshooting.
      o Installation support does not include configuration over and
        above the defaults recommended by Best Practical.
      o If we believe installation will take more than six hours, we
        will attempt to notify you immediately so you can decide
        whether we should continue for an additional charge.

We also offer customized support packages designed to meet specific
customers’ needs.
Academic discounts are available.
And here is the Application support (I am not sure what currency that
this is in I would guess it is in US dollars)
Bronze Level Support ($1,500 per quarter, $6,000 per year)
For companies processing less than 1,000 tickets per quarter in one
ticket database.

      o Best Practical will respond to four separate incident
        support requests per quarter.
      o Best Practical will use reasonable efforts to respond to
        incident support requests within one business day of receipt
        of request.
      o Support requests come via e-mail, sent by your company's
        designated customer representative.
      o _Installation support <installation.html>_ is not included.
      o Additional support (e.g. for additional ticket databases)
        available at $200 per hour for a minimum of four hours.

I suppose that you could look at it like the difference between Cisco
and Alloy networking products, RT Helpdesk is like an Alloy switch that
will do the job but not have all the bells and whistles of the Cisco
Helpdesk like the Pacen Track-It helpdesk system.

The commercial products offer significantly greater amount of benefits
not only remote desktop support as can be seen by there brief
descriptions below. From reading the full feature list of RT it does not
come close to being able to compete with either of these helpdesk
management products.

I received an email from ManageEngine_
http://manageengine.adventnet.com/products/service-desk/helpdesk-screens.html_

Some of the features of this HelpDesk are: Self-Service Portal,
Knowledge Base,
Service Level Agreement to keep track of warranty Ends,
HelpDesk Reports,
Integrated NMS (Auto ticket generation on failure of network devices or
applications monitored by OpManager. Centralized tracking of all network
failure related tickets which is very helpful during auditing. Timely
notice ability and rectification of network failures which results in
maximum uptime of all your network devices and applications. )

Hardware and Software Inventory,
Software Licence Tracking,
Purchase Order Tracking,
Contract Management,
Inventory Reports,.

Another one probably the best I have come across is this one from
Intuit_ http://www.pacen.com.au/trackit/trackit.htm_
Some of the Features of this one

Intuit� Track-It!� 6.5 Enterprise Edition A perfect solution for IT
departments with three or more technicians who manage and support
thousands or more assets and large numbers of end users at multiple
locations. Edition, Enterprise Edition adds advanced help desk and asset
management capabilities. Advanced asset management features allow
customers to leverage their existing IT infrastructure - including
databases, servers and Microsoft Active Directory.
The Add-On Modules Intuit� Track-It!� Alert Provide technicians with
notification and escalation capabilities using pager and email. Intuit�
Track-It!� Audit Collect detailed hardware and software information from
Windows� 9x, NT, 2000 and XP systems. Intuit� Track-It!� Audit Plus
Manage and initiate auditing from a central console for added
flexibility Intuit� Track-It!� Deploy Install and update software on
every local, mobile and remote PC, laptop or server across your entire
organization - without leaving your PC. Intuit� Track-It!� KnowledgeBase
Boost first-level help desk technician productivity by giving them
instant access to thousands of problems/resolutions to leading
applications including Microsoft�, Netscape�, Novell�, Lotus�, Adobe�,
Symantec� and more. Intuit� Track-It!� Mac Audit Collect detailed
hardware and software information from Apple� Macintosh� 8.x and OS X to
10.x computers on your network. Intuit� Track-It!� Receive Captures
emails from applications, network management tools and end users, and
automatically converts them to work orders. Additionally, users can
check the status of their work orders and add additional information.
Intuit� Track-It!� Remote Provide technicians with the ability to
remotely control PCs from within Intuit Track-It!, including
bi-directional file transfers and chat sessions. Intuit� Track-It!� Sync
Enable technicians to create, edit and close work orders remotely with
handheld computers that support synchronization with Microsoft� Outlook�
2000 and 2002. Intuit� Track-It!� Self Service Give users the ability to
submit work orders including attachments , view status of their work
orders and messages from help desk staff, search Intuit Track-It!
Solutions for self help, and perform an audit on their PC. Intuit�
Track-It!� Self Service Plus Add your own problem/solution entries to
the database and allow end-users to search for solutions in freeform
style. Intuit� Track-It!� Technician Web Give technicians seamless
access to Intuit Track-It! from a browser. Intuit Track-It! Remote users
can take remote control of PCs using a browser.

I have emailed the local suppliers to get back to me with a quote and
also requested a 3 Month Trial Key for the software.

So as we can test the software.

End Workmates comments -------------------------------

  Sincerely,
  Chris W

cpwe.vcf (268 Bytes)

AssetTracker, an add-on to RT for tracking hardware (and
software if desired) is just about to be released in
version 1.0. A demo site is available at:

http://rt.chaka.net/

Username: guest
Password: guest

-Todd

http://atwiki.chaka.net/

I don’t know about TrackIT, but maybe you can draw some lessons
expensive, feature rich, fixes-everything-from-hangnails-to-
mothers-in-law. Except that:

  • UI was native windows only
  • Web interface was hobbled, and IE only
  • No UI for end users at the time
  • email support was poor
  • UI was overly complicated, and did not easily
    show basic info (like who appended last),
    had too many panels, each with not enough
    info.
  • Data model did not match the way
    I think about queues and tickets.
  • Privilege system does not separate
    different groups well.
  • We didn’t need/use all the “features”

(“We” still use it, but my group broke away and uses
RT now. We exchange tickets via email with the other system.)

And as to money, you already installed RT. Much as I like
BP and think they would do an excellent job, if money
is such a concern, why wouldn’t you just install it
yourself again?

Beware of the feature punch-list.

bobg

Christopher Welsh wrote:

Hi,

Let me first say I am being sincere here with my questions. I simply
wish to find reasons to keep RT over Track-IT. It’s solid and does a
good job.

Workmates reply to my original email -------------------------------

[…]

End Workmates comments -------------------------------

As it looks like, your company (or your co-worker) is looking for an
"all-in-one-solves-every-problem-in-no-time"-solution.

This is an ambitious goal, but seldomly achieved - fortune 500 companies
pay consultancies big bucks to integrate various solutions for this
purpose (and then it isn’t guaranteed to work either ).
See this link:

(The German article I originally read on paper is much more verbose:
http://www.computerwoche.de/index.cfm?artid=35216&category=162&Pageid=256

  • but in German …)

How many people and machines are you going to support, BTW? And how many
tickets/months are you estimating?
Is there a requirements specification?
Evaluating various SW-packages is a good thing - but you (your company)
should have come-up with a “wish-list” before reading the feature-lists
of various commercial offerings.
Otherwhise, you’ll end-up buying whatever the vendor was able to feed
down on you as “important” or “worthwhile”.

Clearly, you are in the middle of a little “office-intrigue”, or you
have (at least in the eyes of your co-worker) “overstepped” the lines
and are disputing his territory.
So, unless you can come-up with very much better numbers and a better
presentation (or some other non-technical points) the chances of you
winning this “pissing contest” may be not so good.

I wish you good luck anyway.

cheers,
Rainer

~ Rainer Duffner - rainer@ultra-secure.de ~
~ Freising - Munich - Germany ~
~ Unix - Linux - BSD - OpenSource - Security ~
~ http://www.ultra-secure.de/~rainer/pubkey.pgp ~

I have recently moved our HelpDesk away from Track-It into RT. Track-It is
first and foremost a computer tracking and auditing system. The HelpDesk
facilities are half-baked, at best; we used Track-It for three years, and it
never got any better. I hated Track-It.

  • It does not integrate well into email.
  • Tickets have to be requested and updated from the Track-It interface.
  • The Track-It client is slow.
  • Track-It has virtually no ticket-management/escalation ability.
  • Nobody liked to use Track-It, none of our users entered tickets in it and
    none of the HelpDesk used Track-It to manage tickets.

RT has been a huge success and people are actually using it.

  • It is much easier to enter tickets into RT.
  • RT can send out notifications via email.
  • The RT inteface is much easier customize and use.
  • Ticket tracking, ownership, and escalation are very easy to use.

But Track-It has some features that you may find useful.

  • It has a client that can audit computer hardware and software.
  • It can associate a ticket with a specific user/system.
  • It can manage purchases and assign the equipment to a system.

We still have Track-It around to audit computers, but as soon as I can
replace that capability it’s going out the window. I don’t know what kind of
features you want from Track-It, but I would take a hard look at other
options before purchasing it.

Perfection is just a word I use occasionally with mustard.

Atom Powers
Systems Administrator
Pyramid Breweries Inc.
206.682.8322 x251-----Original Message-----
From: rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com
[mailto:rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com] On Behalf Of Christopher
Welsh
Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 4:49 AM
To: rt-users
Subject: [rt-users] RT vs …

Hi,

Let me first say I am being sincere here with my questions. I simply wish to
find reasons to keep RT over Track-IT. It’s solid and does a good job.

Need your thoughts. I wish to keep RT, unfortunately it seems it’s not a case
of apple for apples, and my workmate puts together some good points and
Track-IT seems feature rich. Mind you that unlike what he says about us
putting RT in to get us started was crap. No one in their right mind installs
RT on Mandrake linux as a short term stop gap.

The way he puts things makes track-it definitely is much more feature rich.
From what he says below, Track-it seems to be much more than just a
helpdesk.

Any points in favour of RT?
Anyone usedTrack-IT or know about it?
Anything better than these two products?
Anyone contract offer setup support for RT? As the prices my workmate found
on the Bestpracticle site are beyond our scope

Your thoughts? Please note that when I drafted my email to him, I did
not know what exactly the product was he was looking at.

Begin my original message

  Over the weekend I enabled the following in RT:

  1. Job - Escalation

      o Jobs are escalated every 24 hours. They are set to highest
        priority after 4 days (I est 4 days to be when we have
        resolved most jobs by.)

  2. End user - Self service web interface - users can check / add
  jobs to the queue - requested by Pauld

  3. Reminded - via email - sends a list of open/new jobs with
  priorities to the help desk operator

      o You are reminded via email about the following:
      o New jobs from two days of creation
      o Jobs still open every 7 days

  Other requests Todo.

      o Knowledge base - is installed not yet configured.
      o Add sender's name to his/her job in the "new" jobs list in
        the queue
      o Enable Active directory authentication for Self Service web
        interface.

  Customisation
  The system supports overlays, so one can customize any aspect of
  the helpdesk with little interruption to future upgrades. Nice
  feature. ie. Someone on the list is working on a wizard interface 

(rather than
standard web interface) for users. Users can use a wizard to guide
them though the steps of adding jobs to the helpdesk.

  Clarification on Friday's meeting
  In relation to changing helpdesk systems, I'm not sure I explained
  my view clearly in the meeting, as the thought of replacing the
  helpdesk came as a surprise, especially after the pressure
  involved in getting it up and running earlier this year. I'd love
  to see what this other help desk systems offers, however at this
  stage, I'm not convinced investing $5,000.00+ for a new helpdesk
  will offer any significantly better benefits other than some basic
  features (remote desktop, etc) already offered by Microsoft and
  others for free.

  One question raised in the meeting was that of having time to
  enable helpdesk features in a timely manner. In addition to us
  looking at this other helpdesk system, I'd like to get costs for
  commercial support for the existing RT helpdesk system? As the
  company that offers this product away also offers commercial
  support. I think there are others too. I'd believe this could be
  cost effective way of getting all the features we need.




  Andrew,

  Can you email me web site of the new helpdesk mentioned in the
  meeting for assessment. TA

Workmates reply to my original email -------------------------------

I do not think that the RT Helpdesk has the ability to cover all aspects
of what we require. I think it is a great Free Package. But being free
does not mean that it is really free. The reason RT was deployed was
because we needed something to start tracking the work load and it has
done that job to an extent. It has also enabled us to develop a better
understanding of how helpdesk software works, and what we require as an
application with time for configuration and maintenance. Here is the
cost for installation support from the RT Helpdesk website_
http://www.bestpractical.com_ .

As the creator of RT and its related products, we are the most
knowledgeable company around when it comes to installing RT and RT-based
technologies.

      o $2000 for up to six hours of installation and
        installation-related troubleshooting.
      o Installation support does not include configuration over and
        above the defaults recommended by Best Practical.
      o If we believe installation will take more than six hours, we
        will attempt to notify you immediately so you can decide
        whether we should continue for an additional charge.

We also offer customized support packages designed to meet specific
customers’ needs.
Academic discounts are available.
And here is the Application support (I am not sure what currency that
this is in I would guess it is in US dollars)
Bronze Level Support ($1,500 per quarter, $6,000 per year)
For companies processing less than 1,000 tickets per quarter in one
ticket database.

      o Best Practical will respond to four separate incident
        support requests per quarter.
      o Best Practical will use reasonable efforts to respond to
        incident support requests within one business day of receipt
        of request.
      o Support requests come via e-mail, sent by your company's
        designated customer representative.
      o _Installation support <installation.html>_ is not included.
      o Additional support (e.g. for additional ticket databases)
        available at $200 per hour for a minimum of four hours.

I suppose that you could look at it like the difference between Cisco
and Alloy networking products, RT Helpdesk is like an Alloy switch that
will do the job but not have all the bells and whistles of the Cisco
Helpdesk like the Pacen Track-It helpdesk system.

The commercial products offer significantly greater amount of benefits
not only remote desktop support as can be seen by there brief
descriptions below. From reading the full feature list of RT it does not
come close to being able to compete with either of these helpdesk
management products.

I received an email from ManageEngine_
http://manageengine.adventnet.com/products/service-desk/helpdesk-screens.html

Some of the features of this HelpDesk are: Self-Service Portal,
Knowledge Base,
Service Level Agreement to keep track of warranty Ends,
HelpDesk Reports,
Integrated NMS (Auto ticket generation on failure of network devices or
applications monitored by OpManager. Centralized tracking of all network
failure related tickets which is very helpful during auditing. Timely
notice ability and rectification of network failures which results in
maximum uptime of all your network devices and applications. )

Hardware and Software Inventory,
Software Licence Tracking,
Purchase Order Tracking,
Contract Management,
Inventory Reports,.

Another one probably the best I have come across is this one from
Intuit_ http://www.pacen.com.au/trackit/trackit.htm_
Some of the Features of this one

Intuit® Track-It!® 6.5 Enterprise Edition A perfect solution for IT
departments with three or more technicians who manage and support
thousands or more assets and large numbers of end users at multiple
locations. Edition, Enterprise Edition adds advanced help desk and asset
management capabilities. Advanced asset management features allow
customers to leverage their existing IT infrastructure - including
databases, servers and Microsoft Active Directory.
The Add-On Modules Intuit® Track-It!® Alert Provide technicians with
notification and escalation capabilities using pager and email. Intuit®
Track-It!® Audit Collect detailed hardware and software information from
Windows® 9x, NT, 2000 and XP systems. Intuit® Track-It!® Audit Plus
Manage and initiate auditing from a central console for added
flexibility Intuit® Track-It!® Deploy Install and update software on
every local, mobile and remote PC, laptop or server across your entire
organization - without leaving your PC. Intuit® Track-It!® KnowledgeBase
Boost first-level help desk technician productivity by giving them
instant access to thousands of problems/resolutions to leading
applications including Microsoft®, Netscape®, Novell®, Lotus®,
Adobe®,
Symantec® and more. Intuit® Track-It!® Mac Audit Collect detailed
hardware and software information from Apple® Macintosh® 8.x and OS X to
10.x computers on your network. Intuit® Track-It!® Receive Captures
emails from applications, network management tools and end users, and
automatically converts them to work orders. Additionally, users can
check the status of their work orders and add additional information.
Intuit® Track-It!® Remote Provide technicians with the ability to
remotely control PCs from within Intuit Track-It!, including
bi-directional file transfers and chat sessions. Intuit® Track-It!® Sync
Enable technicians to create, edit and close work orders remotely with
handheld computers that support synchronization with Microsoft® Outlook®
2000 and 2002. Intuit® Track-It!® Self Service Give users the ability to
submit work orders including attachments , view status of their work
orders and messages from help desk staff, search Intuit Track-It!
Solutions for self help, and perform an audit on their PC. Intuit®
Track-It!® Self Service Plus Add your own problem/solution entries to
the database and allow end-users to search for solutions in freeform
style. Intuit® Track-It!® Technician Web Give technicians seamless
access to Intuit Track-It! from a browser. Intuit Track-It! Remote users
can take remote control of PCs using a browser.

I have emailed the local suppliers to get back to me with a quote and
also requested a 3 Month Trial Key for the software.

So as we can test the software.

End Workmates comments -------------------------------

  Sincerely,
  Chris W

Our organization also just threw out Track-It for the reasons Atom
listed below. We did not use the hardware/software audit feature. SMS
does the job for us. Track-It also does not an easy way to time-stamp
updates to the ticket. When the staff work on a ticket, email is sent
manually. All updates have to be cut-and-paste in which is a cumbersome
task so many of them skipped this step which brought up problems during
SOX auditing.

The best feature we got from RT was email notification and the ability
to work on the ticket via email. It’s much simpler for the users and
the staff. We use auto-assigning owner based on queue script to
simulate that feature in Track-It.

Here is an additional list of feature comparision:
Crap about Track-It:

  • Does not time-stamp changes to the ticket. You can’t tell when was
    the last time the end user update the ticket or the staff update the
    ticket. Dates can be changed easily by the staff. (ie, closed today
    but specify that it was closed 2weeks ago)
  • It’s IE-centric !!!
  • It runs on Windows so it’s another MS box to worry about for security

Plus for RT:

  • Multiple users can be part of the ticket (cc or requestors). This is
    really useful for us especially for approvals. Users make request for
    some additional access, cc: their manager. The manager then can reply
    with the approval. In Track-It, the staff would have to manually send
    out the notification on manager, update that they did send it out. Once
    the manager approved, the staff would need to copy and paste the reply
    into the Track-It (SOX requirements).
  • It integrates well with our Active Directory (we pull name, phone
    number, office, and department from AD). 1 password for both system
    (huge plus). People can no longer give excuses that they can’t put in a
    ticket because they forgot their Track-It password. The Staff no longer
    needs to create the account for helpdesk. They just simply log in the
    first time to create the account.
    Account information gets updated automatically whenever it changes under
    AD. (We have a weekly script that sync the database)-----Original Message-----
    From: rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com
    [mailto:rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com] On Behalf Of Atom
    Powers
    Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 9:25 AM
    To: Christopher Welsh; rt-users
    Subject: RE: [rt-users] RT vs …

I have recently moved our HelpDesk away from Track-It into RT. Track-It
is first and foremost a computer tracking and auditing system. The
HelpDesk facilities are half-baked, at best; we used Track-It for three
years, and it never got any better. I hated Track-It.

  • It does not integrate well into email.
  • Tickets have to be requested and updated from the Track-It interface.
  • The Track-It client is slow.
  • Track-It has virtually no ticket-management/escalation ability.
  • Nobody liked to use Track-It, none of our users entered tickets in
    it and none of the HelpDesk used Track-It to manage tickets.

RT has been a huge success and people are actually using it.

  • It is much easier to enter tickets into RT.
  • RT can send out notifications via email.
  • The RT inteface is much easier customize and use.
  • Ticket tracking, ownership, and escalation are very easy to use.

But Track-It has some features that you may find useful.

  • It has a client that can audit computer hardware and software.
  • It can associate a ticket with a specific user/system.
  • It can manage purchases and assign the equipment to a system.

We still have Track-It around to audit computers, but as soon as I can
replace that capability it’s going out the window. I don’t know what
kind of features you want from Track-It, but I would take a hard look at
other options before purchasing it.

Perfection is just a word I use occasionally with mustard.

Atom Powers
Systems Administrator
Pyramid Breweries Inc.
206.682.8322 x251
-----Original Message-----
From: rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com
[mailto:rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com] On Behalf Of
Christopher Welsh
Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 4:49 AM
To: rt-users
Subject: [rt-users] RT vs …

Hi,

Let me first say I am being sincere here with my questions. I simply
wish to find reasons to keep RT over Track-IT. It’s solid and does a
good job.

Need your thoughts. I wish to keep RT, unfortunately it seems it’s not a
case of apple for apples, and my workmate puts together some good points
and Track-IT seems feature rich. Mind you that unlike what he says about
us putting RT in to get us started was crap. No one in their right mind
installs RT on Mandrake linux as a short term stop gap.

The way he puts things makes track-it definitely is much more feature
rich.
From what he says below, Track-it seems to be much more than just a
helpdesk.

Any points in favour of RT?
Anyone usedTrack-IT or know about it?
Anything better than these two products?
Anyone contract offer setup support for RT? As the prices my workmate
found on the Bestpracticle site are beyond our scope

Your thoughts? Please note that when I drafted my email to him, I did
not know what exactly the product was he was looking at.

Begin my original message

  Over the weekend I enabled the following in RT:

  1. Job - Escalation

      o Jobs are escalated every 24 hours. They are set to highest
        priority after 4 days (I est 4 days to be when we have
        resolved most jobs by.)

  2. End user - Self service web interface - users can check / add
  jobs to the queue - requested by Pauld

  3. Reminded - via email - sends a list of open/new jobs with
  priorities to the help desk operator

      o You are reminded via email about the following:
      o New jobs from two days of creation
      o Jobs still open every 7 days

  Other requests Todo.

      o Knowledge base - is installed not yet configured.
      o Add sender's name to his/her job in the "new" jobs list in
        the queue
      o Enable Active directory authentication for Self Service web
        interface.

  Customisation
  The system supports overlays, so one can customize any aspect of
  the helpdesk with little interruption to future upgrades. Nice
  feature. ie. Someone on the list is working on a wizard interface 

(rather than
standard web interface) for users. Users can use a wizard to guide
them though the steps of adding jobs to the helpdesk.

  Clarification on Friday's meeting
  In relation to changing helpdesk systems, I'm not sure I explained
  my view clearly in the meeting, as the thought of replacing the
  helpdesk came as a surprise, especially after the pressure
  involved in getting it up and running earlier this year. I'd love
  to see what this other help desk systems offers, however at this
  stage, I'm not convinced investing $5,000.00+ for a new helpdesk
  will offer any significantly better benefits other than some basic
  features (remote desktop, etc) already offered by Microsoft and
  others for free.

  One question raised in the meeting was that of having time to
  enable helpdesk features in a timely manner. In addition to us
  looking at this other helpdesk system, I'd like to get costs for
  commercial support for the existing RT helpdesk system? As the
  company that offers this product away also offers commercial
  support. I think there are others too. I'd believe this could be
  cost effective way of getting all the features we need.




  Andrew,

  Can you email me web site of the new helpdesk mentioned in the
  meeting for assessment. TA

Workmates reply to my original email -------------------------------

I do not think that the RT Helpdesk has the ability to cover all aspects
of what we require. I think it is a great Free Package. But being free
does not mean that it is really free. The reason RT was deployed was
because we needed something to start tracking the work load and it has
done that job to an extent. It has also enabled us to develop a better
understanding of how helpdesk software works, and what we require as an
application with time for configuration and maintenance. Here is the
cost for installation support from the RT Helpdesk website_
http://www.bestpractical.com_ .

As the creator of RT and its related products, we are the most
knowledgeable company around when it comes to installing RT and RT-based
technologies.

      o $2000 for up to six hours of installation and
        installation-related troubleshooting.
      o Installation support does not include configuration over and
        above the defaults recommended by Best Practical.
      o If we believe installation will take more than six hours, we
        will attempt to notify you immediately so you can decide
        whether we should continue for an additional charge.

We also offer customized support packages designed to meet specific
customers’ needs.
Academic discounts are available.
And here is the Application support (I am not sure what currency that
this is in I would guess it is in US dollars)
Bronze Level Support ($1,500 per quarter, $6,000 per year)
For companies processing less than 1,000 tickets per quarter in one
ticket database.

      o Best Practical will respond to four separate incident
        support requests per quarter.
      o Best Practical will use reasonable efforts to respond to
        incident support requests within one business day of receipt
        of request.
      o Support requests come via e-mail, sent by your company's
        designated customer representative.
      o _Installation support <installation.html>_ is not included.
      o Additional support (e.g. for additional ticket databases)
        available at $200 per hour for a minimum of four hours.

I suppose that you could look at it like the difference between Cisco
and Alloy networking products, RT Helpdesk is like an Alloy switch that
will do the job but not have all the bells and whistles of the Cisco
Helpdesk like the Pacen Track-It helpdesk system.

The commercial products offer significantly greater amount of benefits
not only remote desktop support as can be seen by there brief
descriptions below. From reading the full feature list of RT it does not
come close to being able to compete with either of these helpdesk
management products.

I received an email from ManageEngine_
http://manageengine.adventnet.com/products/service-desk/helpdesk-screens
.html

Some of the features of this HelpDesk are: Self-Service Portal,
Knowledge Base,
Service Level Agreement to keep track of warranty Ends,
HelpDesk Reports,
Integrated NMS (Auto ticket generation on failure of network devices or
applications monitored by OpManager. Centralized tracking of all network
failure related tickets which is very helpful during auditing. Timely
notice ability and rectification of network failures which results in
maximum uptime of all your network devices and applications. )

Hardware and Software Inventory,
Software Licence Tracking,
Purchase Order Tracking,
Contract Management,
Inventory Reports,.

Another one probably the best I have come across is this one from
Intuit_ http://www.pacen.com.au/trackit/trackit.htm_
Some of the Features of this one

Intuit® Track-It!® 6.5 Enterprise Edition A perfect solution for IT
departments with three or more technicians who manage and support
thousands or more assets and large numbers of end users at multiple
locations. Edition, Enterprise Edition adds advanced help desk and asset
management capabilities. Advanced asset management features allow
customers to leverage their existing IT infrastructure - including
databases, servers and Microsoft Active Directory.
The Add-On Modules Intuit® Track-It!® Alert Provide technicians with
notification and escalation capabilities using pager and email.
Intuit®
Track-It!® Audit Collect detailed hardware and software information
from
Windows® 9x, NT, 2000 and XP systems. Intuit® Track-It!® Audit
Plus
Manage and initiate auditing from a central console for added
flexibility Intuit® Track-It!® Deploy Install and update software on
every local, mobile and remote PC, laptop or server across your entire
organization - without leaving your PC. Intuit® Track-It!®
KnowledgeBase
Boost first-level help desk technician productivity by giving them
instant access to thousands of problems/resolutions to leading
applications including Microsoft®, Netscape®, Novell®, Lotus®,
Adobe®,
Symantec® and more. Intuit® Track-It!® Mac Audit Collect detailed
hardware and software information from Apple® Macintosh® 8.x and OS
X to
10.x computers on your network. Intuit® Track-It!® Receive Captures
emails from applications, network management tools and end users, and
automatically converts them to work orders. Additionally, users can
check the status of their work orders and add additional information.
Intuit® Track-It!® Remote Provide technicians with the ability to
remotely control PCs from within Intuit Track-It!, including
bi-directional file transfers and chat sessions. Intuit® Track-It!®
Sync
Enable technicians to create, edit and close work orders remotely with
handheld computers that support synchronization with Microsoft®
Outlook®
2000 and 2002. Intuit® Track-It!® Self Service Give users the
ability to
submit work orders including attachments , view status of their work
orders and messages from help desk staff, search Intuit Track-It!
Solutions for self help, and perform an audit on their PC. Intuit®
Track-It!® Self Service Plus Add your own problem/solution entries to
the database and allow end-users to search for solutions in freeform
style. Intuit® Track-It!® Technician Web Give technicians seamless
access to Intuit Track-It! from a browser. Intuit Track-It! Remote users
can take remote control of PCs using a browser.

I have emailed the local suppliers to get back to me with a quote and
also requested a 3 Month Trial Key for the software.

So as we can test the software.

End Workmates comments -------------------------------

  Sincerely,
  Chris W

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Does, or will, AT have the ability to audit computers? I’m thinking of an
SNMP plug-in or client-side app that record the CPU type, Memory, computer
name, etc. and put it into the database.

Perfection is just a word I use occasionally with mustard.

Atom Powers
Systems Administrator
Pyramid Breweries Inc.
206.682.8322 x251-----Original Message-----
From: rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com
[mailto:rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com] On Behalf Of Todd Chapman
Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 6:19 AM
To: Christopher Welsh
Cc: rt-users
Subject: Re: [rt-users] RT vs …

AssetTracker, an add-on to RT for tracking hardware (and software if desired)
is just about to be released in version 1.0. A demo site is available at:

http://rt.chaka.net/

Username: guest
Password: guest

-Todd

http://atwiki.chaka.net/
http://lists.bestpractical.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/rt-users

RT Administrator and Developer training is coming to your town soon! (Boston,
San Francisco, Austin, Sydney) Contact training@bestpractical.com for
details.

Be sure to check out the RT Wiki at http://wiki.bestpractical.com

Does, or will, AT have the ability to audit computers? I’m thinking of an
SNMP plug-in or client-side app that record the CPU type, Memory, computer
name, etc. and put it into the database.

As we speak I am working on an Atom API for AT. That means there
will eventually be a client side Perl library and command line
tool for AT. We will use this so our Unix/Windows systems can
update some of their info in AT automatically.

-Todd

once the AT addon is out i will attempt to go about this in a different
way.

as stated previously i am working on a front end for rt, and i expect
to have it in beta by may 15 (yup i am a bit slow) once its out there
and AT is released i am planing on adding the ability for users to add
their own hardware to the AT tables.

in my opinion it would be pretty easy to add a snmp to mysql script for
auto collection of hardware stats, but that also means that you will
need a large amount of MIB’s as cisco and hp hardware have diferent
oid’s for its devices.

i use netdisco for network dOn Apr 5, 2005, at 12:58 PM, Atom Powers wrote:

Does, or will, AT have the ability to audit computers? I’m thinking of
an
SNMP plug-in or client-side app that record the CPU type, Memory,
computer
name, etc. and put it into the database.


Perfection is just a word I use occasionally with mustard.

Atom Powers
Systems Administrator
Pyramid Breweries Inc.
206.682.8322 x251
-----Original Message-----
From: rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com
[mailto:rt-users-bounces@lists.bestpractical.com] On Behalf Of Todd
Chapman
Sent: Monday, April 04, 2005 6:19 AM
To: Christopher Welsh
Cc: rt-users
Subject: Re: [rt-users] RT vs …

AssetTracker, an add-on to RT for tracking hardware (and software if
desired)
is just about to be released in version 1.0. A demo site is available
at:

http://rt.chaka.net/

Username: guest
Password: guest

-Todd

http://atwiki.chaka.net/


http://lists.bestpractical.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/rt-users

RT Administrator and Developer training is coming to your town soon!
(Boston,
San Francisco, Austin, Sydney) Contact training@bestpractical.com for
details.

Be sure to check out the RT Wiki at http://wiki.bestpractical.com


http://lists.bestpractical.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/rt-users

RT Administrator and Developer training is coming to your town soon!
(Boston, San Francisco, Austin, Sydney) Contact
training@bestpractical.com for details.

Be sure to check out the RT Wiki at http://wiki.bestpractical.com

Steve Rieger
(212) 804-1131 (Work)
(646) 335-8915 (Cell)
chozrim (aim)

Does, or will, AT have the ability to audit computers? I’m thinking of an
SNMP plug-in or client-side app that record the CPU type, Memory, computer
name, etc. and put it into the database.

As we speak I am working on an Atom API for AT. That means there
will eventually be a client side Perl library and command line
tool for AT. We will use this so our Unix/Windows systems can
update some of their info in AT automatically.

This looked like an interesting project to pick up machine data
several years ago but it seems to have been abandoned:

Les Mikesell
les@futuresource.com

Does, or will, AT have the ability to audit computers? I’m thinking of an
SNMP plug-in or client-side app that record the CPU type, Memory, computer
name, etc. and put it into the database.

If you have to deal with windows clients, check out SYDI (SCript Your
Documentation Instantly)

http://sydi.sourceforge.net/

It’s very nice. Output is very flexible (directly into Word / XML /
HTML) so I’m guessing you could wget the results right into
AT.

Graham