In the past, when dealing with very small organizations, I have used various Windows tools, such as Terminal Services and Remote Assistance in Windows XP. However, these options are not really practical when dealing with a large number of users, particularly since there can be interoperability problems between operating systems if the remote computer is running a different version of Windows.
The increasing demand for efficient remote support has brought about many Web-based services that provide the ability to remotely view and control customers' or users' PCs. By taking control of the problem PC, help desk technicians can usually resolve problems faster and with less stress for all concerned. Many of the new Web-based services use a similar permission-based technology as Microsoft's Remote Assistance, where the user is required to send a small program that allows a third party to access their computer via the Internet. However, the new Web services differ in that they are geared to scale for help desk use. They include issue tracking and support users with a variety of system configurations.
One of the troubles you'll have when introducing Web-based help or e-support is getting users out of the habit of automatically calling the help desk in response to a problem. In order to stop unnecessary calls to the help desk, eSupport proactively informs users of any known technical issues and the status of an individual's service request.
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