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What is Remote Monitoring and Management?

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Tolar Systems uses Remote Monitoring and Management tools to manage our clients’ devices and networks, but often clients and people we meet don’t understand what these tools are or why we use them. We thought it would be helpful to give a brief explanation along with some of the benefits of remote monitoring and management tools.

What is Remote Monitoring and Management?

Remote Monitoring and Management, or RMM as it is known within IT circles, consists of tools that allow an IT managed service provider or other tech support provider (for instance, an off-site IT help desk) to access and monitor the performance of servers, desktops and other equipment. Networking Outsourcing

RMM tools are software applications that can be downloaded onto a machine, where they gather information about performance and activity. This information is sent as alerts and routine status reports to the managed service or IT provider, allowing them to identify issues such as slow performance or other potential issues before they start causing problems for users. It’s an important part of how managed service providers like Tolar Systems proactively prevent problems for clients.

Many remote monitoring and management solutions also provide tools for ticket tracking and user support through an online interface, such as the tools we provide on the Tolar Systems support panel.

What are the Benefits of RMM?

The main benefits of RMM are speed and convenience. Without remote monitoring and maintenance, it’s difficult for users or IT providers to know what is happening with a particular machine until problems occur. Once a problem does occur – such as a machine crashing or running more slowly - an IT service provider that doesn’t use RMM must physically visit the office of a client to run diagnostics on that machine to determine the problem.

This creates an issue because without routine monitoring, it’s impossible to predict if or when problems are going to occur. So, if the provider is busy helping other clients when that machine crashes, then the client must wait for an available time. Without remote monitoring and maintenance, expensive downtime is practically unavoidable.

With RMM, IT service providers like Tolar Systems can take control of the machine from our office, run diagnostics and get to work fixing the problem without having to be physically present. This saves time for us as well as our clients, reducing downtime and improving productivity.

Remote monitoring and maintenance tools also help us prevent issues. RMM tools provide routine, automated scanning and reporting on system performance, which allows us to proactively determine when maintenance tasks need to be performed. We can then schedule them for a time that is convenient for the client before they start causing problems for users.

Security Benefits of Remote Monitoring and Maintenance

Another important benefit of remote monitoring and maintenance is security. Although remote monitoring and maintenance tools are not technically security products, they typically either have security tools built in or are integrated with a standalone security information and event management (SIEM) tool. The combination of these tools provides important security benefits.

One of these benefits is the automated detection and management of security issues that might otherwise be missed. Security intrusions are often first detected as unusual activity within a system, such as multiple login attempts, file downloads or unusual traffic across a network. A user wouldn’t necessarily notice this type of activity, but a RMM/SIEM tool does – and immediately takes action.

These actions might include blocking the login attempts on the machine in question, while the remote monitoring and maintenance application logs and tracks the activity, triggers an alert, and takes other preventive action across the network to ensure that the security intrusion does not succeed.

Working with an IT provider that uses remote monitoring and maintenance can help your organization reduce downtime, lower IT support costs and improve security for every machine on your network. Contact Tolar Systems today to learn more.

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