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What Are We Working on for DameWare - Updated September 10th, 2019

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We are currently in the development phase for the next release, we are working on following areas. As we move forward we will update this post to reflect what we are working on short-term.  If there is anything missing or arguments to move things up, vote on product ideas or post a comment.

 

We're focusing on following features and enhancements:

  • HTTP Strict Transport Security for Dameware proxy Server
  • Improvements related to functionality on Windows 10 
  • Native Mac OS X agent without need for VNC connection
  • Active Directory integration improvements
  • Visual improvements and fixes
  • Security improvements
Comments

I'm happy to see updates and information about product improvement.  Thanks for ensuring we know things are happening.

That is great to hear do you know if you will increase the 3 computers per tech connection in the future?

Do you know if MDM in on the radar?

Please add CTRL+ALT+INS keyboard combination to send CTRL+ALT+DEL to the computer under the remote control.  Constantly do this from VMWare....

Also improve performance.  On 12.0.3 I sometimes get "Initializing FIPS mode" and it hangs there forever.  Close DWMRC and reopen it to that computer and its fine.  That just seems buggy to me.

We have started our user base deployment of Windows 10. Has there been any movement on the functionality of CAC authentication in regard to Windows 10 as this is our preferred method?

Improvements for CAC authentication in Windows 10 were released in 12.0.5

Definitely need the TLS1.2 support as the will close a vulnerability that has been around for more than 2 years.

developing?? really? i have not seen any development of this product in a long time. i have used Dameware since before Solarwinds bought it and things that used to work no longer do, tech support is lacking. they would rather close your ticket without even verifying that the issue is fixed. take a look at the Thwack support board, loads of topics posted without a single reply. what about mobile support? there are products on the same grade level as DameWare and now they can remote into mobile devices as well.

development..... i really would like to see that, as well as massive improvement and training of tech support reps. I most likely will not see that though as i am now looking to move on to something else

Is there an ETA for the release of the next version of DameWare?

Unfortunately, I am not allowed to speak about ETAs.

You're absolutely right. Since version 12 the development progress is a joke.

I think we will change to another software if its not getting better in the future.

Ok, please tell me, why I should renew my maintenance...

For anyone interested, there is a Beta out, that fixes the Win10 issue.

See this post: Dameware 12.1 Beta 1 is now available

If there is anyone willing to help us with testing, it's a great time to do it now.

In the meantime, we're working hard on the beta feedback implementation and hardening of what we already have.

Milan

Unfortunately, this is only a beta of the Dameware Mini Remote, not the entire DRS.

What Win 10 issue?  I'm on 12.0.5 and we have no problems connecting to Window 10 machines (1611, 1703, 1709, 1803).

Why should we renew product support on this while you guys sit around miling a product that is coming up on a decade since its last real major release? A couple of new features from 11. to 12. does not count as a major release. Look at the interface direly needing an overhaul and most of the Remote Support Tools are impossible to use, lacking information and slow to refresh.

Get it moving guys-----

Love to hear what you would like to see.  With 12.1 we made some minor visual updates with icons, along with the new mirror driver to accommodate changes in Windows 10.  Feel free to ping me at brandon.shopp@solarwinds.com or DM me on here if you would like to share and discuss DameWare further.

Just got an email blast from SolarWinds today that took me here as evidense of teh progress they are making on this issue. That's hilarious.

For starters, begin working on basic interface flow issues. There are hundreds of strange workflows in the MiniRemote and the Remote Support Applications. I could sit and list all of the confusing navigational issues with both applications, but you could also hire a UI/UX designer and do the proper development that this paid application deserves. Ask any of your team to sit down with the application and use it for a day or two and you'll quickly see all of the areas for improvement....

For instance: When I 'Tab' from the Host field, I end up in the 'Name' instead of where I should be in the 'Alias' field. (See image below)Screen Shot 2019-01-29 at 10.48.50 AM.png

Accepting that there are a handful of features that are tied to DRE being a SaaS/Cloud product.  I see a lot of features, like native linux/mac agents and screen scaling that shouldn't be DRE specific, yet they are currently.  I'd like to see more feature parity in such instance between DRE and DRS, since I'm confident my years of maintenance payments went into DREs development.

We are investigating possibility to integrate native Mac and Linux agents into DRS and will give an update once there is an output from this process.

keep it coming.  But remember to be constructive.  this is not a rant post.  Thanks.

1) We should not need separate tools in 2019/2020 for connecting to private/public on-network/off-network IP addressed devices.  If we want to connect to a targeted client system it should just be another driver/connection type, not a platform switch.  I am assuming here that the other server style of DW Remote Support is more like Teamviewer or LogMeIn but switching should not require license or application mode changes, just a connection requirement.  When we need to screen share with another system, there is no reason I am aware of it should not be able to be protocol and platform agnostic.  Cloud based applications are not always the best choice for business use cases.

2) The DW protocol console sessions should be optionally resolution scalable and not be limited only to the physical console HW resolution. 

3) Fixing the re-connect session saved protocol feature so that it reverts to the correct previously active protocol when the disconnect occurs.  It should remember what protocol it was using when the connection dropped and re-use that unless overridden by the user.  This is especially true since RDP authentication has been broken in DW for Windows 10 and Server 2016 targets for months and we are told it is not being fixed until some undecided future release of DW. (This seems pretty inexplicable at least to me.)  Updating the mirror driver for Windows 10 is a great and valuable fix in 12.x, but breaking the RDP driver [or at least not fixing it to be compatible with those OS's for months] was not.  (Please see ticket 00364254 or contact me if you have any questions.  Support wanted to close this ticket as well even though they did nothing except confirm it was a bug.  Please check the ticket notes for the evidence.)

4) When Mac native support is being added, please add the option for MDM console for at least iPhones and iPads.  The iPads for example, might not be a laptop just yet, but with the last several years of improvements, Apple is slowly getting closer to them being somewhat useful for more than just recreational consumption.  In any case people do try and use them like a PC so we need to support them remotely.  Ideally it should work similarly for Chromebooks, Android phones/tablets etc..., but almost anything would be better than we have now.

5) Multi display support is forever wacky and sometimes unreliable.  It messes with the open applications on the targets in unhelpful ways, jacks with opened windows, positioning and sizing, sometimes locks the mouse/keyboard on the targets, or constantly purges the clipboard on the connected PC so data cannot be copied during a session.  Most targets we have issues with have been Windows 7/2008R2, but as we are migrating the rest of our systems to Windows 10/Server 2012/2016 the Dameware support for those operating systems has been so far behind and is still broken for RDP connections that it slows down our adoption and we are forced to switch remote control packages.  More than 1/2 of our remote sessions are no longer Dameware as we have had to use other methods because DW will not fix these problems timely.  We use to be 95% Dameware support connections.

I do not believe the ultimate goal is to rant,as we would all like the product improved and fixed as needed.  It is very frustrating to pay maintenance, contact support, make feature requests and be basically ignored for years, so I can understand how many others feel.  My experiences with the product over the last 15+ years at several companies mirror those others who previously posted.

There are many improvements that would be helpful.  Nearly any improvement could be since it has had so little attention...

I am ever hopeful Dameware MRC is not really a dying product, but that still remains to be seen.  Little or no effort is being invested that can be seen from the outside.  DWMRC has several unique and useful features, but most of those came with the product when Solarwinds purchased it.  Some bug fixes, authentication updates, adding VNC support and a few more minor tweaks in about 10 years of development.  We have asked for many features or bug fixes over the years and almost nothing has really ever come from them as the product has languished with no development effort visible at all. 

Maintenance really has only been marginally useful for maintaining system compatibility or the very rare bug-fix and now even that is also apparently falling away.  How long does it really take to make the application fully compatible with Windows 10/2016?  Sometimes the Windows 10 code-base is a moving target with MS, but there does not appear to be much of any effort at all for the product.  MS is dropping a new release of Windows 10 every 6 months or so, and that usually dictates updated applications to follow, but there is no corresponding DWMRC update train that follows the OS releases.

Useful and productive feedback would be greatly appreciated.  I remain hopeful, but not optimistic...

Thank you for at least asking.

Maybe some recent concrete examples would help.  HF3 for DWMRC was just released few days ago.

It would be helpful for HotFixes to offer their own installer.  Among other things, the Windows Programs and Features installed application version would be updated for version and software inventory management as well as tracking the install date.  The main point to a "hotfix" is that it allows an urgent patch to be quickly deployed without having to wait on a full unit/regression/etc testing cycle to be completed for the next update and for those types of rapid fixes, manual file replacement is reasonable.

As there are currently only a couple of updates, (which are usually only Hotfixes) every year or two, it does not seem unreasonable to have an installer.  Also, with so few fixes and the large time delay (several months at least) between them, they do not really seem very "hot" at least to me.

When HotFixes or fixes of any type are released, it is also helpful if the release notes actually describe in some sort of detail, what was actually fixed.  HF3 just released last week incorporates all patches since the original release of 12.1 according those notes.  However the entire set of detailed information for what has been fixed specifically by HF3 (which includes HF1 and HF2) is this single sentence:

     "This hotfix addresses various security issues and crashes in Dameware Mini Remote Control version 12.1.0."

later on after the replaced files listing it says:

     "Hotfix 3 also includes all fixes from Hotfix 1 and Hotfix 2 for Dameware Mini Remote Control version 12.1.0."

In what way is this actually useful to the customer in giving them an understanding about what the changes are designed to address or fix for HF3?  Standard practice for all-inclusive updates like this would generally include the description of the fixes from HF1 and HF2 as well as HF3.  They would be listed as to which HF fixed them and some sort of method to identify or describe the circumstances surrounding the fix.  I understand if the security exploits should not be too specifically detailed, but at least some coverage would be helpful.  Listing the files being replaced is useful, but since they must be manually copied for the HF installation, this seems a minimum requirement.

HF2 release note content was slightly better stating:

"This hotfix addresses the following issues:

  * Security fixes

  * MRC crashes while connecting to PC with portrait mode

  * Send refresh makes display stop updating (with enabled mirror driver)

Hotfix 2 also includes all fixes from Hotfix 1."

However HotFix1 is no longer available for download that I can see.  Nor are the release notes for HF1 available for reference on the download site.  We might not need HF1 any more, but if that is true then the release notes should be rolled forward into the HF2 and HF3 release notes instead of only by reference.

I hope these examples help to better illustrate the concerns that could be addressed and issues that could be improved.  Opening another support ticket to get answers to these sorts of basic questions seems wasteful of everyone's time and resources.  Tech support also does not often seem to have these sorts of answers anyway as I understand because they see the same release notes we do.

Thank you for listening.

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