Today it is not uncommon for organizations to deploy a variety of operating systems across departments.  Some of the most common reasons cited for this trend are that certain operating systems are better at performing specific tasks and that users more familiar with one type of OS should be allowed to use it at work for the sake of productivity.  The proliferation of Mac and Linux in the workplace coupled with the growing BYOD trend poses a unique challenge to IT administration teams.  When it comes to supporting a mixed-OS environment remotely, this challenge becomes even larger.

 

The 3 most widely used operating systems today are Windows, Mac and Linux.

• Windows, as we know, is present in almost every organization in all sectors and sizes

• Mac OS is becoming popular with creative and art departments

• Linux in its various flavors has become a staple in IT departments as a server OS

 

Here are some interesting OS platform statistics from w3schools.com that show the market share of operating systems and the year-over-year growth of Linux and Mac in the industry.

 

 

Providing effective remote support to end-users means that help desk technicians must:

• Be able to remotely control desktops running any of the three most widely used operating systems

• Be able to remotely perform administration tasks in order to troubleshoot services, apps and processes on Windows (as this is still the most commonly used operating system in businesses and other organizations)

 

 

To accomplish this, it is important that IT departments provide their technicians and system administrators with easy-to-use and comprehensive remote support tools.

 

 

The most common remote control tool Windows is the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP).  Though RDP is easy to use and is included in all Windows operating systems since XP, it has limited functionality.  When delivering remote support RDP techs and end-users are unable to share a screen making it difficult for techs to witness first-hand what end-users are experiencing.  Similarly, the most common remote control tool for Mac and Linux operating systems is VNC software, another free tool.  Though VNC Linux and VNC Mac give end-users and techs the ability to share a screen, it lacks other important functions like file transfer, in-session chat, and one click screenshots.  Neither of these tools give help desk techs and system administrators the features needed to perform Windows administration tasks remotely without taking full control of an end-user’s desktop.

 

DameWare Remote Support from SolarWinds wraps all of these remote control functions into one easy-to-use console.  It allows techs and sys admins to remotely control computers with RDP, VNC, and DameWare’s own Mini Remote Control Viewer.

 

In addition to these features, DRS gives techs powerful tools needed to perform Windows administration tasks remotely without having to take full control of end-users computers.  Some of these Windows administration tasks include:

• Remotely rebooting computers

• Starting, stopping and restarting services

• Viewing and clearing event logs

• Adding shares, moving files and reformatting disk drives

• Changing configuration settings

 

 

DRS also includes tools that allow techs to manage multiple Active Directory domains and perform basic functions in Microsoft Exchange 2003-2010 from its intuitive console.

 

 

Watch this quick 1-minute demo to understand how DameWare Mini Remote Control which is available out-of-the-box within DameWare Remote Support to remote control and share screens between Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems.