UNH CIS Signals

CIS Help Desk Gains a New Tool

Nikky Homstad

October, 2008

BomgarAs a Help Desk Consultant, I receive hundreds of calls a week and provide support to UNH students, faculty and staff on everything from network connectivity to Blackboard issues. Occasionally a call comes in that leaves me baffled and completely mystified. When a problem is difficult to describe or understand, the solution can become elusive. Under these circumstances, it would be infinitely more helpful to be sitting by my client’s side instead of talking with them on the phone.

In the summer of 2007, the CIS Help Desk added Bomgar, a secure tool that allows Help Desk Consultants to remotely view a client’s desktop, making it easier for us to assist clients efficiently. With the client’s permission, the consultant can gain remote access to the client’s machine, providing us with a first-hand view of the issue. The remote support session must be proactively started by the client; the Help Desk does not have the ability to randomly access computers on the UNH Network.

The process begins when the client is directed to a Web address where they will run an application to allow access to the consultant. Clients never lose control of their systems while the consultant is accessing their system and may choose one of two levels of accessibility to offer to the Help Desk consultant. Clients may choose to allow the consultant to only watch the computer, or if given further permissions, the consultant can also use the mouse and keyboard. In addition, if the client wishes to end the session at any point, they may click a “kill switch” which instantly disconnects the consultant from their machine. When a session ends, Bomgar terminates the consultant’s access to the computer, ensuring the client’s security remains intact.

Bomgar works on Mac and PC machines with a working Internet connection and Web browser. If you would like a demonstration, more information, or have a computer problem that could be solved using Bomgar, please feel free to call the CIS Help Desk at 862-4242.