Computers Window

The computer window displays selected records from the computers table. The computer table contains a record for every computer that has used the KeyAccess client software to connect to the KeyServer, including records representing both physical and virtual computers. In addition to the obvious fields necessary to identify distinct computers, numerous hardware attributes are available for display in the Computers window using the customizable columns feature. Double clicking any computer record opens its Details window.

See also our Short Burst Training Video on this topic.

The Computers window is included in the "Standard View" from the KeyConfigure Windows menu. It directly supports various reports that summarize computer deployment information including hardware capabilities, internet location, last login, etc. Links to the Computers table from the software Audit and management Policy tables support management of license compliance for specific computers, Divisions, Sections, and Groups.

Computers Window

Left Side — Display column

The Display column on the left of the Computers window is used to restrict the computer list on the right to a selected subset. By enabling check marks for Dedicated and Leased only, you can restrict the display to just the records that require a KeyServer ‘seat’ – the number of such records cannot exceed the number of ‘seats’ enabled by your KeyServer license.

The Display column is divided into four panels. Each one classifies the computer records on the right according to various attributes. Multiple check marks within the same panel increase the selection set — the conditions are OR'd together. Check marks in separate panels decrease the selection set — the conditions are AND'd together. Clicking on the double-check icon that appears between the Display column (left) and the Computer list column (right) will toggle between the current selection and all selected.

Login panel: the five states listed in the login pane classify computers according to which KeyServer services are available or in use. Read Sassafras Software Licensing for information on how the login types affect licensing of the Sassafras KeyServer Platform.

Divisions panel: by default, there is a single Uncategorized division which includes all computer records. To create your own Divisions, use right click in the white area to bring up the context menu item, “New Division....” . Computers can be organized into the various Divisions either explicitly (by dragging selected records) or implicitly based on rules (explained below). In the table view of computer records on the right, the “Division” column will display the division membership for each computer (except for Uncategorized computers, which are listed with a blank value). In order to assign management responsibility for various subsets of these divisions, a subset can be aggregated into a Section and assigned to a limited admin account as explained in the Sections document.

Filters panel: there is always at least one filter named Discovered. In addition, there are a number of other sample filters that are configured by default. You can also use the “New Filter....” menu item under a right click in the white area to create a new Filter, defining your own search criteria. Clicking to the left of a filter will select it. Only one filter can be selected at once.

Tags panel: Tags are arbitrary strings that are assigned to computers, policies, products, and users. This panel lists all Computer Tags, and will initially be empty until you have added some tags. For more, read the Tags documentation.

Rules — Filters with Actions

The default item in the Filters panel labeled Discovered is actually a Rule – it includes actions that, by default, set newly discovered computers to Login as Dedicated clients with Auditing enabled. To add or change an action defined in a rule, double click to see the filter details and click the 'triangle button' to disclose its configuration details. You can change the default Login type and Audit behavior specified in the Discovered rule, but the division assignment, Uncategorized, cannot be changed.

Filters with an action, i.e. Rules, are distinguished with a pink cross-hatch icon and always appear above Filters which have no action. They appear with small icons to the right of the name as an indication of which actions are active. The Discovered rule is the final rule, appearing just above the line separating Rules from plain Filters (if any).

A hierarchy of Rules descending down to the final Rule, Discovered, can be configured so that newly discovered computers are automatically categorized into an appropriate Division and the desired Audit behavior is specified. Computer records are matched against the Rules starting from the top — as soon as a rule matches, that rule's action(s) are applied, and no further rules are checked for that Computer. If the matching rule does not specify both Division and Audit behavior, the unspecified attribute will be set according to the Discovered rule (acting as the default).

OU Mapping

If you are using Active Directory for Client Authentication, it is also possible to populate Divisions based on each Computer's OU (similar functionality exists for LDAP and Kerberos authentication). This functionality is configured in the Active Directory authentication dialog. Using this means when a computer creates a session with the server, it will be put into a Division that matches the OU, based upon the options set in the Client Authentication module. Note that you can opt to let rules override mapping so you can augment your OU structure with custom Rules per the above section.

Anchored computers

Rules are evaluated every time a client computer establishes a session with the KeyServer. If a given computer should not be moved to a different division by any rules it can be Anchored, either by manually dragging it into the desired division, by right-clicking on it to "Anchor in Division", or by checking the Anchored option in computer details. An Anchored computer will no longer be moved from its division by any Rules or by OU Mapping. Its Division will remain fixed unless subsequently changed by an administrator. Other automatic settings made by rules will still apply. The Login and Audit settings for an Anchored computer can still change automatically by a Rule.

Computer that are Anchored are indicated in the computer list by an anchor icon in the Division column. When a computer is first discovered, it is not Anchored, and will not show this icon. In order to bring an Anchored computer back under the influence of rules, drag it onto the Discovered rule (filter), or open the Computer Details window and un-check the "Anchored" checkbox. You will see the anchor icon go away, indicating that it is once again un-Anchored. Whenever rules are changed and reapplied, they will affect all such un-Anchored computers, in order to easily recategorize them.

If a Division contains automatically allocated computers only (by Rule or client authentication) its icon will be pink. If it contains any anchored systems (or no computers) it will be blue.

Right Side — Computer records

The various columns on the right hand large pane show various hardware characteristics and other attributes for each computer (or virtual computer) that has connected to the KeyServer using the KeyAccess client. Right-click on the column headers and choose Arrange Columns to select which fields are shown. You can also Remove a given column from display that you right clicked on. Define Columns allows you to label and therefore make available any of the 10 custom columns available for use. The few columns displayed in the Computers window by default are described below:


When you double-click on a computer record, its Computer Details Window will open showing all the field values for this record along with panels that show related Policy and Audit information. Note: various versions of KeyAccess have added the ability to gather additional hardware properties — older clients do not gather all possible hardware properties.

Reports are available via right-click that summarize computer data for the set of currently displayed records – however, Audit reports (for software) will never include Dormant or Excluded computers. To report on a single computer record, select just this one record and use right-click, or use right-click from its Computer Details window.

Computer list windows

Double-click on any selector (Login type, Division, Rule or Filter) in the left column of the Computers window and a separate window opens listing all the matching computer records. In the case of a filter (or rule), you can show or hide the filter conditions under the disclosure triangle icon at the top.

Context Menu Actions

Right-clicking on a computer in the computers window will offer the following options, in addition to any applicable Scripts you have installed:

  • Show Installs - Selecting this option opens the Installs detail window for the computer which shows all Programs found on the system.
  • Show Hotfixes - This option opens a window that show all known Hotfixes on the system. Only applicable for Windows.
  • Show User - Open the User details for the Last User of the system. Option is only available if there is an active Session.
  • Request Audit - Queues an Audit request for the computer. When the client next checks in with the server an Audit will be triggered. If there is an active session this is relatively immediate, otherwise it will depend on the client connection.
  • Exclude/Include from Audit - Toggles the "Automatically Audit" option in the computer details.
  • Anchor/Unanchor in Division - Toggles the Anchor state. See above for details on Anchoring impact.
  • Summarize Access - Opens a detailed window showing the ACLs for the computer object. Useful for troubleshooting permissions rights.
  • Reports - This section of the context menu shows all Reports relevant to a Computer object. Selecting one will open a Report Builder window with the computer pre-targeted.
  • In addition to context menus, whenever you see the icon representing a computer anywhere in the KeyConfigure interface, it will generally be clickable to expose relevant context or detail and it will be dragable into other user interface elements whenever such a drag has an obvious meaning.

    Drag and Drop Actions

    Computers in the computers window can be Dragged and Dropped to the following locations, among others:

    Importing

    It is possible to import computers from a CSV (or tab separated text file) rather than have them populate from a client session. This can be useful for adding offline systems to KeyServer for inventory purposes, or pre-populating records before the hardware is delivered on site. These records will be created in a Dormant state so they do not consume a license seat. If they are created with proper IDs, then if a client connects to the server with a matching ID it will join the prestage record and update the Audit data.

    To perform an import, simply drag your CSV with header row included into the Computers Window. You will be prompted to choose Import Instructions. Select New to create a new mapping and call it whatever you like for later use. This is handy when you'll be bringing in data again from the same source (matching format) so you don't have to create a new import map each time.

    Computer Import Dialogue

    You will now see a window with destination fields on the left, and your import file source headers on the right. You can name the import instruction set at the top of the window. Drag the header names from the right and place them under the appropriate target field on the left to create the mappings. You can map multiple fields in some cases (like Notes) and the data will be concatenated in the target. Click OK when you're finished.

    Computer Import Mapping

    Make sure the import set you just created is selected in the Import window and click OK to see a confirmation of the import mapping. You can click Next to go through each import row and confirm the data looks right, or click Complete and all records will be imported. If there are any questions during the import you will be prompted to address them. For example, if you are importing warranty dates the format will be confirmed. You'll then be prompted at the end to remember your choices as part of the import map for future use.

    Computer Import Confirmation

    You can edit the imported computer objects just like any other computer. You can repeat this process to update records in the future. Be aware that if you do this for any system that has KeyAccess, the client will update and replace fields as needed when it checks in. Manual fields will not be affected, but if you set the Model for example that will be replaced by the client gathered information.