Computer Management

In this section, you will learn how to quickly access, support and manage computers within the main Computers tab view.

This article assumes that you already have set the Computer view to a container of your choice. To know more about browsing or searching for network objects, click here.

The Computers View

The Computers View displays the list of computers which belong to the opened container. The parent container path is displayed at the top of the view in the Network Browser Selection bar.

Tip:

The number of records displayed within a container can be reduced by applying a Container Filter.

Tip:

To have Active Directory return the list of computer objects sorted by name, enable the Sort Active Directory result sets in the Network Settings > Active Directory category of Goverlan Settings.

Live System Information

Goverlan displays live status and system information for the visible computers items within the Computers view. For instance, the icon changes whenever the system is unreachable or powered on. The active logged-in user is also reporting in real-time. You do not need to refresh the view for this information to get updated.

In order to gather system information live, Goverlan places a network call to all of the machines currently visible in the view. Each network call doesn’t require a lot of network bandwidth or processing.

However, if you wish to disable live query of machine information, you can do so in the General Settings  > Administration & Diagnostic > Computers Management Settings category.

If you are in the Favorites computer view, you can also right click on any Favorites container and turn on or off this feature via Do not query OS information for this folder option.

Modifying Computer Account Information

You can modify computer account information directly from within the computers view. To do select, select a computer entry and single click within the field to be edited or press the F2 key. This activates in-place editing of the field. Change the value within the field and press the Enter key or click outside of the edit field to validate the change.

To modify other account properties, create a new computer account, delete or move an account, right click on the object and select the appropriate Account Management option.

Remote Computer Support and Management

Right click or double click on any of the computer object to disclose the set of available support and management features:

NOTE:

You can select multiple objects simultaneous by using the [CTRL] and [SHIFT] keys. The context sensitive menu reflects the current selection. Make sure that when selecting multiple objects in the view, you only select objects of the same type. If you select objects of different types, you will not be able to use the context sensitive menu.

Goverlan offers a large set of features to administer machines remotely. However, you can extend this feature set either by compiling a set of custom actions into a package or by adding your own scripts or external programs.

External Controls

Below each computer object is an External Controls node. This node allows you to create shortcuts to external applications and scripts which accept a machine name or username as input parameters. Once configured, double click on it and Goverlan automatically sets the external tool’s focus to the currently selected object.

See: External Controls

Custom Actions

Below each computer object is a Custom Actions node. This node allows you to create sophisticated packages for reporting, modifying and executing actions. If you need to regularly query a specific set of data about a computer or to execute a series of tasks on it, simply create a Custom Action.

See: Custom Actions

System Information

The System Information feature provides a wealth of OS and hardware information on a remote machine. It is also a portal to many powerful remote administration tasks such as modifying network settings, or joining a domain.

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To export system information to a file, click on the Export Information link.

NETWORK SETTINGS

An overview of the target computer’s network settings including the account’s password age are displayed in this section.

A computer account’s password age is a useful piece of information to detect stale computer records. The default computer account password change period is every 30 days.

If a computer has been decommissioned, that computer will not change its password and its password age will increase.

If the computer belongs to a domain, you can view and modify the computer’s account settings by clicking on the view domain account properties link.

Click on the Modify Network Settings to:

  • View and modify the computer’s IP configuration, including DNS and DHCP information
  • Rename the computer
  • Have the computer join or un-join a domain or workgroup

Changing IP / DNS Configuration

Since changing IP settings remotely is a delicate operation, the following considerations apply:

  • Change all IP and DNS settings at once before applying the changes.
  • If you need to change the primary IP address of a machine, make sure that you have connected to it using the machine DNS / NetBIOS name and NOT its IP address.
    If you have connected to the target machine via its IP address and subsequently change the IP address, Goverlan will not be able to reconnect to it.
  • Changing IP settings may involve DNS updates and synchronizations. After an IP setting change, the Goverlan Agents automatically force a DNS update for the machine. Additionally, Goverlan automatically clears the local DNS resolution cache in order to detect the most recent DNS resolution. However, in large environments, it might still take a while before the machine is reachable again via its DNS name.

Troubleshooting IP Settings Changes

If Goverlan waits to reconnect for an unreasonable time, you can press on the Escape key to abort it. What is failing at this stage is not that the IP settings weren’t applied, but that Goverlan couldn’t reconnect with the target machine.

  • If the IP address is known, ping the machine by its IP address
    If the ping failed, it may be that the IP settings specified were incorrect and the machine is no longer reachable.
  • Ping the machine by its DNS name. Check that the IP DNS resolution is pointing to the correct IP address. If it still points to the old IP address, DNS synchronization and replication may not have happened yet, or, the remote machine failed to update the DNS with its new information. If the machine is pingable via its DNS name, simply refresh the object list in Goverlan and try to connect to the remote machine again.

LOGIN EVENTS AND REMOTE CONTROL SESSION HISTORY

This section displays the logged-in user history recorded by Goverlan. It will show the last 5 user names who logged-into the computer. Note: In order for logged-in user history to be recorded, the Goverlan service must be installed and running on the audited machine.

The last 25 events of the Remote Control Session History log is also displayed in this section. The session history log contains audit information on the last remote control sessions initiated on the target machine.

Click on the View full event log to view the complete log.

Logged-In User Information

Double-click on the Logged-in Users icon to display the users currently logged into the audited machine. Both the console user and user logged-in remotely via RDP are displayed by this feature.

  • To view a user’s account information, double click on the User icon to open the User Account Information window.
  • To log off the user, you can right click on the Logged-in Users icon and select Logoff the interactive user.
  • To reset a RDP user session, right-click on the user object and select Reset Session.
    Tip:

    To quickly access the user object in the Users View, you can use the logged-in user’s context sensitive menu and select Set focus in Users view (see figure above).

Programs

This feature allows you to:

  • Query detailed information on the installed software applications
  • Repair or un-install a software application
  • Deploy software applications

See Managing Installed Software for further information.

Windows Updates

Query and manage the previously installed and available Windows updates on a remote machine.

Modifying Update Settings

Use the Update Settings section to apply the desired settings on the remote machine.

Querying Available Updates

  • Select the Available Updates tab.
  • Click on Reload to query the available updates which have already been detected or Click on Check For New Updates to have the remote machine connect to the internet and check for new updates. Note: Either method may take a while to complete. While processing, you can use Goverlan for other tasks.

Once the available updates are returned, you can export the data to a file by clicking on the Export Data link at the bottom of the list view.

The Available Updates list view includes a lot of information, most of which is not displayed by default. To show or hide information columns, right-click on the list view header and check or un-check the columns to display.

Downloading and Installing Updates

To download and install updates, select one or more entries from the list and click on:

  • Download Update to only download the selected updates. If the selected updates have already been downloaded, this button is disabled.
  • Install Selected to install the selected updates. If one or more updates have not been downloaded yet, this action downloads them first, then installs them.
NOTE:

Either method may take a while to complete. While processing, you can keep on using Goverlan for other tasks.

Troubleshooting Updates Installation

If you selected to install one or more updates and the operation failed:

  • Some updates require user input and cannot be installed remotely. The Available Updates view includes a Requires User Inputs column that you can use to exclude such updates.
  • Click on the View Windows Update Log link and explore its contents for additional error information.

Querying the Update History

  • Select the Update History tab

Once the update history is returned, you can export the data to a file by clicking on the Export Data link at the bottom of the list view.

Local Users and Groups

Use this feature to query and manage the local account database of a computer. Select the computer object in either the Users or Machines view, expand the computer icon and double click on Local Users and Groups.

To display detailed information about a particular user or group account, select it and click on the Properties button, or simply double click on an entry. You do not need to access the account properties window in order to modify the account name or description. Select an item and single click on the field to be modified (or press the F2 key) to activate in-place editing of this field.

  • To add a new account or to delete an existing one, click on the Add orRemove button.
  • To modify group memberships, open the Properties window of the group and use the Members tab.

Local and Mapped Drives

Double-click on the Drive Information icon to display and manage the local drive and drive mapping information of a computer.

Use the Task Panel on the left to execute a task. The available drive map tasks depend on the current selection. You can also use the context sensitive menu by right-clicking on an item in the drive maps list view.

Opening a drive

To open the drive map share, simply double click on it, or select the item and click on Open in the Task Panel. You can also right click on the mouse and select Open from the context sensitive menu. The Task Panel also includes an Open command for two special shares on the remote machine, the Open Root Share command which opens the system drive root share (i.e.: C$) and the Open Admin Share command which opens the administrative share: ADMIN$.

NOTE:

You can only open local drives if these have been shared.

Modifying a user’s network mappings

With Goverlan you can remotely manage all your users’ network drive mappings. You can modify existing drive maps, remove a drive map or even add a new network drive map remotely.

Adding a network drive map to a remote user

Click on Map network drive in the Task Panel to start the Add drive map Wizard. You can also activate the Add Connection window by pressing the [Insert] key of the keyboard.

  1. Select the drive letter to be connected.  The Drive selection box will reflect the current configuration of the user’s mapping. If you select a drive which is already mapped, it will be replaced with the new mapping.
  2. Enter the server name and share name to be mapped to in the Path field. If needed, enter the DOMAINNAME\Account and password in the respective fields. Check-off Reconnect at log-on if appropriate. Then click on Add Connection.

Removing a network drive map from a remote user

Select the drive map from the list and click on Disconnect network drive in the Task Panel, or, right click on the mouse and select Disconnect network drive from the context sensitive menu.

Setting a network drive map as Persistent or Non-Persistent

From the Task Panel, select the drive map from the list and click on Reconnect at logon or Do not reconnect at logon. Otherwise, from the context sensitive menu, right click on the mouse and select Reconnect at logon or Do not reconnect at logon.

User Selection Control

If you open the Drive Information window for a Terminal Services Server machine and more than one user session is currently active, you can use the User Selection Control to switch from one user session to another. Modifications to drive mappings only apply to the currently focused user.

Reporting Drive Information

To export the drive information to a text file, click on Report Information in the Task Panel.

Printers

Double-click on the Printers icon to display and manage the user and local printers on the audited machine. Goverlan can manage locally attached printers, local printer queues to TCP Network printers, single user printer connections and per-machine user printer connections.

Use the Task Panel on the left to execute a task. The available printer tasks depend on the current selection. You can also use the context sensitive menu by right-clicking on an item in the printer list view.

The user’s default printer is marked with the  http://assets.goverlan.com/userguide_img/printer%20default%20printer.png  icon. To change the default printer, select another printer queue and click on the Set as Default Printer link in the Task Panel, or, right-click on the mouse and select ‘Set as Default Printer’ from the context sensitive menu.

Printer Properties

  • To view the properties of a printer, select it and click on Properties in the Task Panel, or, right-click on the mouse and select Properties from the context sensitive menu.
  • To open a printer queue, double click on it, or, select it and click on See what’s printing in the Task Panel, or, right-click on the mouse and selectSee what’s printing from the context sensitive menu.

Adding / Removing Printers

Adding a Local Printer

  • Click on the Add a printer link in the Task Panel.
  • Select Local Printer Queue from the Add Wizard.
  • Follow the Add Printer Wizard to complete your operation.

Adding a TCP Network Printer

To add a network attached printer to a machine:

  • Click on the Add a printer link in the Task Panel.
  • Select Local Printer Queue from the Add Wizard.
  • Follow the Add Printer Wizard to complete your operation.

Adding a User Printer Connection

  • Click on the Add a printer link in the Task Panel.
  • Select User Printer Queue from the Add Wizard.
  • Enter the UNC path of the printer queue.
  • Remove the check in the All Users check box.
  • Click on Add Connection.

Adding an All User (Per-Machine) Printer Connection

An All User Printer queue is persistent to the machine itself and applies to all users logging into the machine.

  • Click on the Add a printer link in the Task Panel.
  • Select User Printer Queue from the Add Wizard.
  • Enter the UNC path of the printer queue.
  • Enable the check in the All Users check box.
  • Click on Add Connection.

Removing a Printer

  • Select  the printer object from the view.
  • Click on the Delete this printer link in the Task Panel.

Sharing / Un-sharing a local printer

To share or un-share a local printer queue, select it and click on the Share or Unshare in the Task Panel, or, right-click on the mouse and select Share or Unshare from the context sensitive menu.

Reporting the printer information

To export the printer information to a text file, click on Report Information in the Task Panel.

Services

Use this feature to query and manage the service and device drivers on a remote computer. To open the Services window of a computer, select the computer object in either the Users view or the Machines view, expand the computer icon and double click on Services. The Services window has two tabs, one for software services and another for device drivers.

Viewing Information

Goverlan can display a lot of information for each item such as Product and Company name, Binary Path or File Version. By default, not all information is displayed. To enable or disable information columns, right-click on the column header to enable or disable the columns to display. You can also sort or group by any column. Grouping information is very practical. Click on the header of a grouped column to display the Group Focus menu and quickly set the focus to a group entry.

You can export all information provided by this feature to a text file using the report button located at the top right corner of the window.

To view detailed information about a service or driver, double-click on it to open its properties window.

Controlling Services

Using Goverlan, you can Start, Stop, Pause, Resume and Remove services and drivers. To do so, select the item of interest and click on the desired action button. Note: Windows services cannot be removed.

To modify the start up mode or the service user account used by the service, open the item’s properties window and modify the appropriate setting.

Device Manager

The Device Manager allows you to view and manage the hardware devices installed on a machine. It is very similar to the native Windows Device Manager but it is used to manage remote machines.

To access this feature, double click on the Device Manager icon below a machine or right-click on a machine and select Device Manager.

Using the Goverlan Device Manager you will be able to:

  • View the currently installed devices including their status.
  • Export devices information into a text file.
  • Disable / Enable a device.
  • Uninstall a device.
  • Scan for hardware changes.

Viewing Devices Information

The Device Manager allows you to view the devices either in a list view or a tree view (default). To switch from one view to the other, use the selection box located at the top right corner of the main view. The advantage of the flat list view is that you can sort or group by any column you desire by clicking on its header allowing for greater flexibility than the tree view format.

  • To export the view contents into a text file, click on the Report Informationlink in the Task Panel.
  • To view the properties of a particular device, select it and view its properties in the Task Panel.
  • To include hidden devices, click Show hidden devices. Hidden devices include non-Plug and Play devices.
    To manage a device, select it and:

Managing Devices

  • To enable or disable it, click on the respective link in the Task Panel.
  • To un-install the hardware device, click on the Uninstall link in the Task Panel.
  • To scan for hardware changes (which detects newly inserted plug and play devices), select the root category to scan and click on Scan for Hardware Change.
    NOTE:

    If you select the root tree item (the computer object), all categories will be scanned for hardware changes.

Shared Folders

Use this feature to query and manage the shared resources, opened sessions and opened files of a computer. To open the Shared Resources window of a computer, select the computer object in either the Users view or the Machines view, expand the computer icon and double click on Shared Resources.

The Shared Resources manager can be used to view the configured shared resources, as well as the opened sessions and opened files of a computer. Opened sessions and opened files can be disconnected and shared resources can be created or modified. Select the appropriate information tab and appropriate action accordingly.

  • To create a new share, click on the New Share button, enter the new share name, path and description. Then click on OK.
  • To remove an existing share, select it from the list and click on the Stop Sharing button.
  • To view the properties or to modify the settings of an existing share, select it from the list and click on the Properties button.

Environment Variables

Use this feature to query and manage the user and system environment variables on a remote computer. To open the Environment Variables window, select the computer object in either the Users view or the Machines view. Expand the computer icon and double click on Environment Variables.

Using this window, you can modify, delete or create new system or user environment variables. The user variables apply to the currently logged-in console user on the remote machine.

User Selection Control

To switch between any user session or system variable set, use the Variable Sets section of the Task Panel.

Chat and Push Messages

Stay connected with your users through Goverlan Chat and Push Notifications. For more information refer to the Chat and Push Messages guide.

Remote Control

Double click on this option to start a remote desktop access session to the remote machine. See: Goverlan Reach Remote Control

Task Manager

The Goverlan Task Manager provides additional functionality not found in the native Windows Task Manager. For more information refer to the Goverlan Task Manager guide.

Remote CMD

The Goverlan Remote Command console feature provides a command prompt access to any remote machine. The console can be started as the administrator or as the remote user. For more information refer to the Goverlan Remote CMD guide.

Power Options

The Power Options dashboard is an at-a-glance screen that provides a complete status of the workstation with added actions like reboot to safe mode and logging a user off. For more information refer to the Power Options guide.

File Manager

View, send and receive files from the remote file system with the File Manager. For more information refer to the Goverlan File Manager guide.

Remote Administer with WMI

Double click on this option to start a WMI management session with the remote machine. WMI management is done via the Goverlan WMIX tool.

WMIX provides you with the easiest way to access and control the information and settings on a remote machine by using the built-in Windows® Management Instrumentation (WMI) technology.

Refer to the WMIX User Guide for further information.

Script Packages

Script packaging is a powerful feature which allows you to easily dispatch the execution of local scripts onto a single machine or a group of machines and receive a consolidated report of console outputs. The Script Packages feature is accessible from any computer by expanding it and using the Script Packages node, or, via the context sensitive menu.

This feature can be used to run the following script types:

  • Batch (.bat)
  • VB Script (.vbs)
  • Powershell (.ps1)
NOTE:

Goverlan can push PowerShell scripts without having to enable the Remote WinRM, however the machine must have the set-execution policy for scripting as RemoteSigned.

Defining Script Packages

Before you can execute a script package on a remote machine, you must define it. To do so, right-click on the Script Packages node of any computer and select Manage Scripts to open the Goverlan Object Manager.

  • To share (or unshare) a script object with other Goverlan users on your network, select it and click on the  Deploy WIndows Batch and VB Scripts remotely  button. See Team Sharing for more information.

Script Package Properties

  1. Enter the script object’s name and description.
  2. Run Path – Specify the full path of the script package for this object. The script can be located on your machine or in a network share.
  3. Transfer Methods – Select The run path is accessible from the remote machines if the path specified points to a network share, or, Transfer the program to the following directory then run from local path to have Goverlan first transfer the script package onto a temporary location on the target machines and then run it from there.If you select to transfer the script first, you can modify the destination folder on the target machines. Note: The destination path may contain environment variables but they will be resolved using the System Variable set (not the User Variable Set).If the script package has external dependencies, enable the Transfer the entire parent directory option. The dependencies must be located at the root of the parent folder.Enable Delete file(s) after execution if you wish to clean up the transferred files once the script is completed.
  4. Execution – Select the credentials to use to execute the script package. Note: If the script is run directly from a network share, you cannot select Run As Local System since this account doesn’t have network access.Enable Hide execution window to prevent the user interface from being displayed on the target machine during execution.
  5. Output – Configure the execution time out value and decide if you want Goverlan to kill the script process if a time out occurs.If the script package has reporting or error console output, enable the Record console output to option and configure an output text file path. The console output of the script for all machines will be compiled into that output file. Goverlan automatically opens it at the end of the execution.
  6. Click on Ok.
    Once you have configured your script packages, you can easily dispatch their execution on a single machine or a selection of multiple machines.

Running Script Packages

  • To run the script packages on a single machine, expand the Script Packages node under the desired machine and double click on the script package to execute.
  • To run the script package on multiple machines, use the [CTRL] or [SHIFT] key to select two or more machines in the main view or in the Search result list, right-click on the mouse, expand the Script Package sub-menu and select the script package to execute.

Run As

Goverlan has a powerful Run As feature which can be used to start a local process on your machine or to start a process on a remote machine using a specified set of user credentials. This is useful when you need to give temporary, extended access to a remote user or to troubleshoot a server using the Local System account. You can also use the Run As feature as a standard Run… on your local workstation.

NOTE:

The Run As feature only executes the process as defined by its path. It doesn’t transfer the process to a client machine before executing it. If you need to have the process transferred prior to running it, use the Batch & Script feature.

The Run As window has a Basic and an Advanced view mode. The Basic view is very similar to the standard Windows Run feature. To modify the destination machine or the set of credentials to use for the process, you must activate the Advanced view mode.

Setting the process name

Enter the process name to execute in the Open field. You must specify the full local path and name of the process to start. If appropriate, enter the argument string for the process.

If the process is located in a directory which belongs to the system variable PATH of the destination machine, you do not need to re-enter the its path. If you specify a local path and name, the process must be located on the destination machine. Goverlan accepts environment variables in the path.

You can also enter a UNC path for the process if its located on a shared resource. However, make sure that the credentials used to start the process have access to the shared resources.

The Open field accepts a URL or directory path. The web page or directory is opened as a result of the execution.+

Examples:

  • C:\LocalScripts\MyLocalScript.pl
  • cmd.exe
  • %ProgramFiles%SomeSoftsoft.exe “-input:C:\DataMy\file.csv”
  • http://www.goverlan.com
  • C:\Program Files

If you need to start multiple processes sequentially, enable the Stay Opened option. If the Stay Opened option is un-checked, the Run As window closes once the process has started. If checked, the Run As window stays opened.

Setting the destination machine

The destination machine section allows you to specify the machine name in which to execute the process. This section is pre-set with the name of the computer currently in focus. If the destination machine hosts more than one user session, you can select which user session to target using the User Session link.

Setting the Credentials

Select the credentials to use for the new process. The new process can run under any of the following credentials:

a. Under the credentials of the interactive user of the destination machine – This is the same as if the remote user started the process.

b. Under the credentials of the Local System Account of the destination machine – These credentials are generally used by Services and don’t have the privilege to access networked resources. However, they do have full access to the local machine’s resources. Therefore, they should be used with care.

c. Under the specified account – This option allows you to specify both domain and local accounts. For local accounts, enter the remote machine’s name under the Domain Name field.

Warning:

Using the Run As feature to initiate a process on a remote machine with highly privileged credentials should be executed with care because it may provide the remote user with a means to access restricted resources.

Process Completion Options

If the process is designed to execute some tasks and terminate, you can ask Goverlan to wait for the completion of the process. To do so, enable the Wait for the Process to Complete option. Enter the number of seconds to wait for the process to complete and in the event the process fails to complete within the configured time line, specify whether Goverlan should forcefully terminate the process.

Check the Hide execution window to prevent any user interface to be displayed during the execution of the process.

If the process writes output information to the console, you can configure Goverlan to display them back to you once the process is complete. SelectShow Console Output to view the process’s console output. Goverlan even accepts standard DOS commands such as IPCONFIG or NET USE and will return its output.

Example

Run commands remotely on any Windows based system

IP Scanner

The IP Scanner allows you to specify a network segment and scan for IP information. The tool is mainly used as a way to select a set of computers but it can also be used to explore the available machines for an IP segment.

To scan, enter the IP address to start from and the IP address to end at in theFrom and To fields. As you change the IP segment, the total number of IP addresses to scan is displayed underneath the To field. To specify the criteria to apply, in order to list an IP address in the Results window, check one or more of the following criteria:

  • IP is Alive – The IP address must answer a ping to be accepted.
  • IP Resolves to a Name – The IP address must resolve to a DNS or NetBIOS name to be accepted.
  • IP Resolves to a MAC Address – The IP address must resolve to a MAC address to be accepted.

An IP address must pass all checked conditions for the IP address to be listed in the Results window. Click on Scan to initiate the scan with the configured criteria.

IP Addresses can be in the following formats

  • CIDR – 192.168.1.0/24 or fe00/128
  • IP Range – From 192.168.1.50 To 192.168.1.200

IPV6 is supported.

NOTE:

During a scan, you can click on the Stop Scan button at any time to abort the process.

Once the scan is complete, you can export its results by clicking on the Report button located at the top right corner of the IP Scanner window.

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