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Announcing General Availability of Web Help Desk v12.5.2

Level 12

We are excited to share, that we've reached GA for Web Help Desk​v12.5.2

This service release includes:

Clickjacking protection

This release prevents malicious code from redirecting a hyperlink in the Web Help Desk user interface to an unauthorized third-party website or resource.

Secure password reset logic

After you click Forgot Password on the Log In screen, Web Help Desk verifies your current email address and redirects you back to the application using a secure connection to reset your password.

Improved LDAP security

Web Help Desk now prevents unauthorized LDAP client account users from logging in to an LDAP tech account with an identical user name. In v12.5.1 and earlier, WHD had 2 ways to handle LDAP authentication. One for techs and one for clients. After you install this release, the tech LDAP authentication functionality is removed, and every tech, who used this functionality will have his WHD password reset, and will also receive an email with steps to log in to WHD.

See Unauthorized clients can log in to a Tech account using LDAP authentication for details.

Before you install this upgrade, ensure that all techs have client accounts (authenticated through LDAP) linked to their tech accounts. Also ensure, that the tech username is not the same as any of the client's usernames. After the upgrade, all techs must access their tech account through their client account, or using the WHD tech username and WHD password (which can be reset using the secure password reset logic).

Updated Apache Tomcat

This release supports Apache® Tomcat® 7.0.82 for improved security. See the Apache Tomcat website for details.

Notabe fixed issues

Tickets linked to a survey now close properly after you change the status to Resolved.

The Office 365 connector now supports subfolders.

Tickets restricted to a location group can no longer be accessed by users in another location group.

We encourage all customers to upgrade to this latest release which is available within your customer portal.

Thank you!

SolarWinds Team

35 Comments
Level 10

Really, we've waited almost 6 months for this?  Not impressed.

Level 10

Security is important, so this update is welcome (even a bit complicated). But there is so much more that the users of WHD need that a bigger update with considerable more additional functionality would be brilliant.

Level 14

Have to agree with the above comments. Counting this service release The last 3 ga builds V12.5, 12.5.1 and 12.5.2 have only afforded us 1 new feature for actually managing tickets. Upgrading 3rd party modules you use and security is great and should be looked at often but at this point we need feature improvement.

Level 7

Preview option from the Look and Feel page does not work at all.

Level 9

Appreciable updates indeed.  Security is important.  I, too, look forward to an update soon with new features included.

Level 9

I agree with you Typhoon.  This continues to be a great disappointment that they keep promising improvements and not delivering (I keep saying "They talk a good game").  Milan is just like his predecessor. Takes months to put out updates and when they do the update is way off from what we are expecting).

Level 12

Hey Bob, I actually take this as a compliment

Look, when it comes to enhancements of the product, I am the 1st one to scream, that we need to build this or that in order to help our current customer-base with their workflows.

This SR was not planned. We had a serious bug in 12.5.1 and the only way to fix it was to ship another SR.

One of the customers has also found a LDAP vulnerability in WHD, so we had to fix it.

And while doing it, we fixed Clickjacking, introduced password reset to help with upgrades and updated Tomcat.

None of this was originally planned for the release after 12.5.1 (well, maybe the Tomcat was, as this is something we plan on doing frequently).

I'll be updating the What We're Working on page shortly. I just need to create a new page, ask THWACK admins to replace the current one and start from scratch as there are 100s of comments, related to multiple previous releases.

Level 10

Ok, it makes sense. My only thought would be why not mention that at the beginning.  This update is just at a week old and it took you just as long to post your comment.  Look, I really want this product to continue.  As you can see there are folks here that feel the same way.  Just be upfront and honest at the beginning.  We've been waiting too long in between updates with minimal fixes or enhancements and this just looked like another one of those minimal fixes.  When I see an update with no enhancements and only fixes, I want to pull my hair out.  Just be upfront with your customer base.  Not sure if we will be patient too much longer, but I'm sure some of us would understand.

Level 10

Is that it ?

After waiting for almost 6 months

Level 8

Is there ever going to be an update for the virtual appliance or should we just migrate to a Windows server?

Level 12

I don't get this statement "Also ensure, that the tech username is not the same as any of the client's usernames."

Wouldn't all the techs also be clients, so their username's would be the same?

Level 14

So I actually had this issue and worked with Peter on it. We have had that setup for over 4 years where the tech username is the same as their network username. There was always a warning not to to do this but previous versions had no ill effects if you did. After you upgrade to 12.5.2 if you have this set up any affected techs will not be able to log in to the system . The tech account is a local account within the WHD DB this is tied to a user account normally from LDAP/AD/Novell now you cant have 2 accounts with the same user id. Change the user id example add a t to the end of their tech account user name before upgrading..

Level 7

I actually know the answer to this one!  It's fairly straight forward:

https://support.solarwinds.com/Success_Center/Web_Help_Desk_(WHD)/Upgrade_WHD_on_a_Linux_virtual_app...

Level 12

I have never seen this warning before. I have seen this.

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But I do not consider that a warning, I would consider that a feature. I consider 12.5.2 a downgrade not an upgrade. Why was this considered a security issue? I don't get it.

I liked the way it was, and wish they would have made it an option for those organizations that wanted different usernames.

Level 7

I don't think this answers the question, dwatson. Yes, you can upgrade the WHD on the virtual appliance with the RPM files, but I believe danny8136 is asking, and what I would like to know as well, if we're ever going to get upgrades to the entire appliance again.

If I remember correctly, there are issues with the appliance OS and rather than update the appliance, Solarwinds is recommending setting up your own Linux or Windows server. I can only assume that they want to be absolved of responsibility for the underlying OS. That would make the OS our problem.

Level 8

After upgrading from 12.5.1 to 12.5.2 I get an incorrect username or password error when I try to log in with my tech/admin account.

How can I fix this? I know the password is correct since I use the username/password on other sites at my organization.

The SWHD accounts are set up with our LDAP authentication.

Level 14

Did you make sure to follow the steps here. There is a notable change to how the Tech accounts are set up. See this KB for information Unauthorized clients can log in to a Tech account using LDAP authentication - SolarWinds Worldwide, ...

Level 8

Our site doesn't give us a reset password url to use.

When I clicked on the forgot password it sent me an email telling me to log in with my LDAP creds.

Level 14

Its not a url it should have been an email with a reset password. If your techs did not get that I would think you might want to contact support.

Level 8

Yeah I didn't receive any emails after upgrading.

Level 8

They were able to reset the password through the sql database and get me in.

Level 8

When is the next update going to be released?

Level 8

Probably next August.

Level 8

I hope it has some feature enhancements

Level 8

The way SolarWinds has been acquiring companies with more modern/advanced technology, I'm waiting hoping they acquire a help desk company.  Anyone else?

Level 12

Over the last 3 weeks, I have watched demos of over  different ITSM solutions. There are some that look prettier than WHD. There are some that have features WHD doesn't have, and very few have all the features WHD has. None are as inexpensive as WHD (except SpiceWorks which is free).

It is amazing that there isn't a single company out there that does everything, and looks good doing it at the same time.

I have looked at InvGate, ChangeGear, FreshService, GroupLink, IncidentMonitor, ServiceNow, RemedyForce, Samanage, HappyFox, Vivantio, ServiceDesk Plus, iSupport, Vision HelpDesk, GetHelp/TipWeb-IT

If these, IncidentMonitor from 24-7 is most powerful (can do anything), but looks ugly.

InvGate looks prettiest, but lacks some notable features.

Interesting how many ITSM solutions do NOT print tickets.

I would love to stay with WHD, but I would need to see the following features:

  • An Actual Mobile app for our iPhones where we can create tickets (bonus if they use the camera to scan barcodes for inventorying or linking assets to a ticket).
  • Canned Responses (Global and Individual) for quick entry in Notes on Tickets
  • Smart Knowledge Base Articles that display next to a ticket based on the tickets Request Type and Keywords in the ticket. I should NOT need to search when all the fields are already filled out.
  • Setup Preferences for Reservations. When I create a Reservation, I should NOT need to set a  Schedule Out date and Schedule In date. Schedule Out should default to Today (and allow me to change). Schedule In should default to whatever I set in Setup>Preference and still should allow me to change. The Asset Lookup should be in the top Reservation Details area to make it obvious that you need to locate a Client AND an Asset. Bonus would allow a Reservation from the actual Asset or Client views.
  • On Demand Approvals from within a Ticket. There are times when I am working on a ticket only to find out I need a quick approval (typically to purchase an item we determine needs repair). I would like to click on Approval, and type in a persons name, and add a quick note, and that person should receive an email asking for approval - as part of the ticket.
  • Collaborators. I know I can CC or even BCC someone, and they can add notes to a ticket, but I would like to add a non-Tech to a ticket and allow them to become part of the ticket. Bonus for allowing multiple Techs on the same ticket.
  • Double Bonus: On tickets with multiple Techs attached, capability of a chat feature - especially on the mobile app) which would allow the techs to collaborate and keep the chat as notes on the ticket. Like using iMessage or Slack within a ticket.
  • Fix the JAMF Pro connection with Asset Discovery of mobile devices (doesn't work currently )
  • Begin enhancing the CMDB and form dual relationships between Hardware - Software automatically based on discovery methods. Along with maintaining a table of Contracts, Leases, Licenses, etc with their relationships to CIs
  • Combine Tasks and Action Rules into a graphical Flow Chart workflow system.
  • Initial Surveys should be part of the Resolution Email. So instead of an email asking if the Ticket was Resolved Yes | No, that should be the initial Survey (Not Fix | Fixed | Awesome ) Something like that, with a link to a longer survey if desired.

Get that done by August please, then we can start looking at more enhancement feature requests

Level 8

Some awesome ideas here.. I especially like:

"Double Bonus: On tickets with multiple Techs attached, capability of a chat feature - especially on the mobile app) which would allow the techs to collaborate and keep the chat as notes on the ticket. Like using iMessage or Slack within a ticket."

That would be a really good feature!! Being able to collaborate via instant message on the mobile app about specific tickets and then the system logging the chats in some private area on the ticket. I like the idea of having tech "watchers" too and a section for all the tickets you are watching.

Sounds like integration with Slack would be useful there.. come to think of it, I'm not sure if this is already possible. I shall have to lab it up some time and find out!

Level 12

Folks, is anyone interested in demo of https://www.solarwindsmsp.com/products/remote-management/service-desk ???

If so, send me an email/private message and I'll have it arranged.

Level 9

seems like you are deemphasizing WHD and pushing customers towards a different product? Any emphasis on updating the WebHelpdesk software that has not been updated to a new version in a couple of years?

Level 12

Bob, seems like you're very unhappy with WHD and maybe would like to try something else? Would you like to see the demo of service desk? PM for service desk is getting feedback from current WHD customers (who are very active and passionate about WHD) on what they think about this new SaaS based product, so he can better prioritize his backlog.

Level 8

Milan, is Service Desk a new product?  Is it intended to replace WHD?

Level 10

Dear Milan,

Service Desk seems to be a part of a software suite doing various things.

Improvement of WebHelpDesk would be very appreciated (and needed) - but changing to a different product is not that easy (at least for public institutions).

Even though a different application is from the same supplier, we need to go out for tender (even if the software license would be transferred, but I need to look into this). This means we need to create a list of requirements, discuss this within the IT department to get everybody's input (after all everybody of the department works with WebHelpDesk on a daily biases), check if there is a framework from the Irish Office of Government Procurement, maybe check with our counterparts if we join a tender process... you get my drift.

The easiest way for us is an upgrade of the same software that increases step-by-step the functionality until it is on the same level as the competitors. Have I said that in about 12 to 18 months we need to do a review of the application, which I believe with the outdated functionality will result in a tender process for a new product.

Regards,

Eberhard

Level 9

Milan,

You are 100% incorrect. I'm very happy with the WHD product itself.  What I'm not happy with (and I think most of your customers will support me on this) is the lack of updates to the WHD product and the continued back and forth of promises by you and your predecessors.  Now it appears that you are trying to push your customers toward something else. We all wondering what is going on with WHD.  There has not been any updates for this product in a long time. Version 12 seems to have been around forever. 

Bob

Level 12

Hi Michael,

yes, it is a new product. And no, it is not intended to replace WHD.