We are happy to announce the new major release 2.6 of our network inventory and documentation solution “JDisc Discovery”!
As usual, our development engineers added many new stunning features where most of them were inspired by discussions with our customers. The new features cover three main topics.
1. Tracking Changes
The bigger networks grow, the more important and the more difficult it gets to track changes within your network environment. Even small changes on a router’s or switch configuration can have a big impact on your overall network performance and stability. Therefore our R&D engineers created in January the first version of our new “Device History Add-On“. With this new product, our customers can take snapshots of their devices at any time. Snapshots can be reviewed at any time.
At JDisc, we prefer short release cycles to get early feedback from our customers. Therefore, we splitted the overall functionality for our device history add-on into three phases:
- Phase 1: Take and review device snapshots
- Phase 2: Visualize differences for a single device
- Phase 3: Create difference reports covering many devices
Phase 1 was already completed in January. JDisc Discovery 2.6 completes phase 2. Our R&D department created a pretty cool way to highlight changes between two snapshots. Don’t be afraid of questions like “What has changed within the last few weeks?” anymore. With our new add-on, you’ll find the answer with just a few clicks!
Our device details dialogs consists of scalar reports which represent attribute value pairs and table based reports. The following screenshot illustrates how we highlight changes within scalar reports:
First, you select any two snapshots within the history snapshot table within the left area. Then JDisc Discovery switches immediately into the comparison mode. The dialog title explains which snapshots get compared against each other. Changes get highlighted with red and green color. Sections in red indicate the the text has been removed when comparing the first with the second snapshot. Sections in green indicate, that text has been added when comparing the two snapshots. Fields without any change appear in default color.
The “Diff all fields” checkbox within the snapshot history list toggles between two modes:
- Show the changes for all fields (and include fields that are frequently changing – such as System uptime or last discovery date)
- Exclude frequently changing fields from the difference report
Comparing table based reports is slightly different:
JDisc adds two new columns at the beginning of the table. The two columns stand for the two snapshots. The left snapshot represents the first selected snapshot and the right snapshot the second snapshot. When there is no difference between the two snapshots, then JDisc adds a checkmark in both columns. If the line is missing in either snapshot, then JDisc adds only one checkmark in the corresponding column. When there are changes, then JDisc creates a combined row including the two snapshots. Columns with changes get highlighted in red.
What’s coming next? In order to complete phase 3, we are working on three new major features:
- Compare a device against a “reference device”
- Compare a device with any other device
- Create comparison reports for multiple devices (e.g. find all devices where the software has changed within the last 3 months).
2. Improved Thin Client Support
Thin clients are popular because they are comparably cheap and easy to deploy. JDisc has greatly improved the SNMP support for Wyse thin clients. Furthermore, it detects on terminal servers who is logged on from which client computer (via RDP and Citrix connections). This is very important for software license management, because the number of users that log-on to a terminal server impact the number of licenses that need to be purchased.
JDisc not only detects Thin Client connections to a server. It identifies a RDP or Citrix connection from any device!
The logged on users and the logged on user history reports have been extended with two new columns. The “Logon Type” column indicates the kind of logon (interactive, remotely via RDP, or remotely via Citrix). The “Client Name” column indicates for remote connections from where the user logged on to this computer.
3. Aspera License Management Interface
Aspera is one of the leading license management solutions. With the new release, JDisc created an interface in order to
export discovered hardware and software information into Aspera’s database. Together with Aspera, we can reduce license
cost and ensure that you are license compliant.
Feel free to add comments on this blog entry!