Dell Computer next week will launch OpenManage ResolutionAssistant, an Internet-based program to deliver tech support for its PC servers, speeding up resolution of tech support problems by providing a direct channel from Dell's tech support staff to users' problem machines.
Starting next week, servers that ship will have agent software running on them that can communicate over the Internet with server software and a knowledge base running at Dell headquarters in Round Rock, Texas. Users of older servers, dating back before May 1998, will be able to download the software from the Internet free of charge.
When a problem crops up on a server, the agent software attempts to diagnose the problem using checks of disk-drive status, processors, memory, firmware, RAID subsystems, and other server components. The software can annotate the software's automated diagnosis with its own comments, then the package of information, which also contains complete diagnostics from on-board server instrumentation, is sent over the Internet to Dell.
Dell said it hopes at least 50% of its server customers will sign up for OpenManage Resolution Assistant by next year. It plans to roll out the software for desktop systems next year. The software will be available at no extra charge as part of Dell service programs.