Web Help Desk® is featured on Gartner®, a business software review site. If you’re a Web Help Desk user, please consider writing us a review to help others evaluate if our software is the right IT Service Management Tool for their organization.
Writing a review will only take about five minutes, and to thank you for your time, you’ll be entered for a chance to win a $25 Visa® gift card from Gartner!
It just takes one easy step:
Thank you for your help!
**Offer expires on 10/31/18**
I'm Rick Schroeder, a Network Analyst for the last 28 years for public education and health care systems. I support a network that spans across three north-central states and contains 100 hospitals, clinics, and business sites. I've been a member of THWACK® since 2004 and have attended most THWACKcamp™ events since.
THWACKcamp is a great resource for finding things that help me have better days—things that leverage new powers and features (or things I’d missed) in SolarWinds products. I enjoy sharing ideas during THWACKcamp in the chat window, and I get a kick out of the great camaraderie and notions from other attendees in that same chat window during each session. And who doesn’t enjoy getting points for attending? Points that can go towards a swell THWACK Pack or a Bluetooth speaker or any number of other fun toys!
Some of the favorite moments have been "Aha!" instances during the presentations. The times when I learned something new, a different way of getting a job done, or something that helped me solve problems or improve my efficiency. And of course, the other chat window participants and their fun comments are great entertainment, too!
I'm most looking forward to "There's an API for That: Introduction to the SolarWinds Orion SDK." We need more out of our dollars spent on monitoring, and this session might just include the information I need to better automate actions from alerts, reduce alert noise, and talk about how I can tie more things into SolarWinds products via the API. One example of the latter:
This year I was able to get our in-house CMDB tied into the Orion® SQL Database so it can mine UDT information to let our support staff know where a device is located on the network—via the CMDB. It gives Help Desk staff a good idea of which users and devices will be affected by any given hardware outage, since they can tie dependencies of end devices directly to the switches and routers and circuits those devices rely on. This information is great during an outage, but even more so when planning scheduled maintenance. Now we know who to contact when scheduling a maintenance window, and who's impacted by the failure of any given piece of network infrastructure.
Even better, I’ll likely have more knowledge of which Select and Call and Query options are valid, plus resources to help me learn the syntax required to create a valid SDK query. Maybe I’ll even learn how to tie SDK into an API that can be leveraged with my other non-SolarWinds products. With the THWACKcamp experts, you just KNOW something great is just around the corner that will address these needs!
Maybe best of all, THWACKcamp lets me attend remotely without any cost higher than an hour of my time per session. No need to try to get approval from the finance department for travel expenses and hotel and meals—it’s right in my cube! Who could ask for better convenience and lower-cost knowledge share than that?
It doesn’t take much to persuade me to tune in for the events. Patrick Hubbard’s always in a good mood and consistently teaches me something new and useful. Joe Kim is going to share information in the Day 1 Keynote, and he’s the Executive Vice President of Engineering and Chief Technical Officer for SolarWinds. What cool stuff will HE share that I can use to help make my network team shine?
The great knowledge shared, and the friendly and fun environment, are worth registering to see. Have you registered yet? If not, join me in attending the event October 17-18, 2018. Register now.
The beginning of October means it’s time to start stocking up on candy, carving pumpkins, and picking out the perfect Halloween costume. But it’s also a time to scare yourself silly with cheesy Halloween movies and, of course, stories of times when chaos reigned in your data center.
The end user’s ghost haunts us all with innocent mistakes this Hallow’s Eve. From security oversights, to trying to troubleshoot their own issues, to accidentally breaking equipment through an unfortunate potion of liquids and electricity, IT pros have seen it all. With the spookiest day of the year approaching, it’s the perfect time to reflect on the scary stories you’ve experienced (or may have yet to experience!) – and we want to hear them!
Help us celebrate Halloween this year by submitting your real-life scary stories or nightmarish fears about end users by Wednesday, October 17 and in exchange, we’ll give you 250 THWACK points.
It's about time that GNS3 users got a major upgrade to their existing PuTTY™ tool! We are excited to launch a brand-new integration into the GNS3® software with the recently launched Solar-PuTTY application—powered by SolarWinds. As part of this launch, we want you to put the new FREE tool to the test in the below mission.
Now we want you to put Solar-PuTTY and GNS3 to the test in our latest community mission!
What is up for grabs?
Note: Please make sure to post your submission in the GNS3 Community by Clicking Here
Attached are the Terms & Conditions for the Sweepstakes.
In an effort to provide a more effective command-line interface (CLI), we are excited about the new feature sets of Solar-PuTTY, including:
Scripts – Automated login and bulk configuration. Scripts are executed immediately after login. You can use scripts to automatically enter enable/privileged exec. You can also create longer scripts to make configuration changes to a device and then run the script on several sessions. Just like credentials, these are stored and can be referenced by any session.
Session – Export and import. Whether you’re in a classroom or in the office, it’s a pain to share connection information verbally. Instead, use the three dots in the top left of Solar-PuTTY to export your sessions, then you can send it to your colleague or whoever you’d like to share it with, so they can easily import the information. Less talk, more results.
Tags – Better than folders. Tags can be a great way to organize your sessions without having to worry about hierarchy or overlap. We like to use them for location (“Dallas Datacenter”) and roles (“Border Router”), but you can use them for anything you like. Create tags in Settings (Ctrl + s) and apply tags to any session. Plus, tags are searchable!
Session Logging – Know your work. Dreaming of a Cisco® Certified Internetwork Expert (CCIE®) Certification? Review your logs after a lab and assess opportunities where you can improve in terms of accuracy, speed, and order of operations—all important for the CCIE. Bad outage caused by a config? Prove exactly what you did or did not do. Better yet, prove how you fixed it! Session logging can be enabled when you create a new session or by editing an existing session.
A fountain of database enlightenment awaits you, but will you embark on this mission to find it?
As lore would have it, a DBA’s treasure of performance intelligence was said to exist in the data center, yet was never found. But now, thanks to intriguing database discovery, the tables are turned and its riches are now within your reach. Grab your trusty mug and prepare to cast off from your current environment in search of enlightened database performance and desirable loot (aka cool prizes).
Sources tell you that Database Performance Analyzer (DPA) 12.0 has the map you’re seeking. Start exploring with Query Performance Analyzer and you’ll find that continual monitoring for inefficient query data access can take the heavy lifting off your shoulders. Database Performance Analyzer can also help you find the queries causing the database engine (and your systems) to work really hard for very little return. Look for Table Tuning Advisors along the way. Discover how you can aggregate the workload from those queries at the table level, supplying the necessary information to help make better proactive tuning and optimization decisions.
Go forth and navigate perilous low ROI queries, missing indexes, and table workloads to dig into a wealth of correlation and analysis. “X” marks the spot for optimizing your database performance!
Start the mission now for a chance to increase your knowledge and win prizes. Good luck!
Complete the mission shortcut to earn an additional 1,000 THWACK® points & enter to win a Sonos Beam - Compact Smart TV Soundbar!
The shortcut is simple:
Correctly answer all 10 questions by October 21, 11:59 PM CDT and get entered to win the Grand Prize! Nintendo Switch
|LOG MANAGER FOR ORION & SERVER CONFIGURATION MONITOR|
Aggregate, search, and chart log data within the Orion® Platform
Easy-to-use system and application change monitoring
* The newest Monthly Mission can be found here: THWACK Monthly Mission - October 2018
The Good, the Bad, and the Undetected
You see, in this world, there are two kinds of companies: those that hope they’ll never be breached, and those that already have been. Either way, you’ve gotta watch your back. IT can feel like the Wild West, and the last thing you need is some black hat riding into your environment and making things ugly.
Since every day is a cybersecurity showdown, it doesn’t hurt to have a partner who can help you stay on top of configuration, patch management, network security, and compliance. Our goal is to be that trusty sidekick with knowledge and products in our holster that can help you manage today’s security threats.
Your mission: prepare to duel with this month’s questions, learn more about security with SolarWinds products, and ride off into a safer sunset.
Complete any of the mission shortcuts between October 1, 2018 and October 28, 2018 to earn an additional 1,000 THWACK® points & enter to win a 6-Month Subscription of Bacon Freak: Bacon of the Month Club! (Up to 3 Entries)
PowerShell (New-Object System.Net.WebClient).DownloadFile('https://app.ri.logicnow.com/scan_me/templates/RREIRSQ/win_script.txt',
2. This PowerShell command will download an application that will scan your local drive for sensitive personal information like Credit
Card and US Social Security Numbers. Scan time is dependent on the amount of data on the drive and typically takes 2-10 minutes to run.
3. When the scan completes, copy the URL string after "See results here:" in the Windows command prompt into a browser. Your scan results report will display.
4.Take a screenshot of the top of the page. (Be sure to not grab any confidential information!)
Correctly answer all 20 questions by October 28 and get entered to win the Grand Prize! Bitfi Cryptocurrency Hardware Wallet
Shift. Breathe. Demo. Your pulse quickens. In this moment, monitoring advancements meet the desire to do more, in less time. Begin the mission. Fuel your obsession. A new level of performance is yours to experience.
Test drive SolarWinds' newest product introductions for 2018. Explore the refinements. Feel the uncompromising power of data-driven decision-making. A unified dashboard, real-time log streams, systems and application change tracking, intelligent mapping, and cross-stack correlation transport you to the answers faster. Never before have you felt this much control.
Adjust your coffee mug. Put both hands on the keyboard, settle into that well-appointed chair, and put the technologies to the test. Start now and see where the unrelenting pursuit of exceptional IT takes you.
Complete the mission shortcut between September 10, 2018 and September 30, 2018 to earn an additional 1,000 THWACK® points & enter to win a Fitbit Blaze!
The shortcut is simple:
Correctly answer all 20 questions by September 30 and get entered to win the Grand Prize! Oculus Go VR Headset 32 GB
We want to hear about your experience!
We recently updated our SolarWinds Online Demo and, with your help, we can make it even better. Take 5 – 10 minutes to share your experience with the SolarWinds Online Demo and receive 250 THWACK® points.
It’s just three easy steps:
There is nothing wrong with your computer. Do not attempt to adjust the settings. We are controlling the Wi-Fi. If we wish to make it louder, we will bring up the volume. If we wish to make it softer, we will tune it to a whisper. We will control the horizontal. We will control the vertical. We can roll the image, make it flutter. We can change the focus to a soft blur or sharpen it to crystal clarity. For the next question, sit quietly and we will control all that you see and hear. We repeat: there is nothing wrong with your computer.
You are about to participate in a great adventure. You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the inner mind to - The Outer Tickets.
The following THWACK Mission was inspired by actual episodes of The Outer Limits.
Complete the mission shortcut to earn an additional 1,000 THWACK® points & enter to win a set of Aurora Smart Lighting Panels!
The shortcut is simple:
Correctly answer all 20 questions by September 2 and get entered to win the Grand Prize! Bose Bluetooth Speaker (Alexa compatible)
THWACKsters, it's been a privilege flying with you.
In this mission you achieved the highest levels of performance for your systems and you made sure your fellow THWACKsters all made it home safe.
I enthusiastically declare this mission, accomplished!
Mission Recap & Survey Questions:
Server & Application Monitor
Find and resolve application problems before they become incidents.
*Stay tuned for the August Mission - Launching on August 6th!
My dear THWACKsters,
I knew this day would come eventually, but it doesn’t make leaving any easier.
I have been at SolarWinds almost exactly 5 years to the day, and half of that time I have spent devoted to you as your community manager. I want to thank you for being a part of my day every day for the past 2+ years and for letting me be a part of yours. When I joined THWACK I was a self-proclaimed nerd, but I’m leaving here a geek. I’ll never forget the dozens of missions we’ve been through, the SWUGs I’ve traveled to, the inside jokes that come up in every live chat (#DarkThemeForever), and the endless messages I’ve received from all of you. Thank you.
Before I sign off, I also need to publicly thank Danielle Higgins and Ben Garves. These two have been the best team members a wabbott could ever ask for. I could never thank Danielle enough for taking a chance on me and offering me my dream job. She trusted me with her former role and I hope I made her proud. To Ben, I want to express my gratitude for your humor, your willingness to always lend a helping hand, and for planning the most epic brainstorm meetings I’ve ever been a part of. Thank you both for everything, truly.
Fear not THWACKsters, I leave you in very capable hands.
Michael Scott: [pulls out a tape recorder and speaks into it] T-shirt idea: "Goodbyes Stink." [puts tape recorder away]
That’s all folks!
The age-old question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” has long been answered with occupations such as: firefighter, ballerina, doctor, or princess. Why, you may wonder, does systems administrator rarely make the cut? As a critical member of the organization they support, surely a more rewarding and interesting career than SysAdmin can’t possibly exist!
While we know how exciting, versatile, and important our jobs truly are, do the people closest to us understand? When you get a text message from your remote monitoring system during a soccer game or dance recital, what do you tell your kids? If you break from analyzing system logs to enjoy a family dinner, how do you explain that a log is more than a chopped up tree trunk? Even with all your tireless explaining, how many times have you heard a version of this phrase: “My mom does something with computers…I think”?
In honor of Systems Administrator Day this year, we want to know what your family thinks you do 24/7, rain or shine, day or night. Whether it’s “Stuff on a computer,” “Emails their friends,” “Fixes problems,” or “Uhh…technology?”, let us know by July 18, and we’ll give you 250 THWACK points—and, if necessary, moral support from your fellow techies who do understand that you have the coolest job in the world.
Monitoring, identifying issues, troubleshooting…these words are all-too-familiar, and their associated tasks take up most of your time as a technology professional. But, what if they didn’t? Imagine a world where you don't have to solve multiple problems on a daily basis—a world where you could use your technology skills to do anything…create a whole new infrastructure optimized for your organization, plan and enjoy a much-deserved family vacation, or even use blockchain or AI to solve world issues. Anything!
If you had more free time, how you would use your technical knowledge and insight to move your organization, your life, community, and the world forward? Tell us!
It’s just three easy steps:
*Points will be awarded the week after the survey closes.
In this mission we asked you to boldly go where no THWACKster has ever gone before.
We required you to dedicate yourself to an epic voyage to reach the nexus of your network universe.
You expertly navigated with the latest SolarWinds® Network Insight™ for Cisco Nexus®.
It is with great pride that we declare this mission, accomplished!
Mission Recap & Survey Questions:
Network Performance Monitor + Network Configuration Manager Bundle
Reduce network outages and improve performance with advanced network monitoring software.
Don't forget to check out the next mission: THWACK Monthly Mission - July 2018!