What would you like to see Atera and ChatGPT do next?

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tanderson
tanderson Member Posts: 204 ✭✭✭✭
edited May 2023 in Got an idea?

Hello All,

I hope all is well.

I wanted to ask the community on a more conversational level compared to the Features Board what the community thinks of the Atera and ChatGPT integration and what direction everyone would like to see this new feature set morph into.

I embrace the integration with ChatGPT. Existential crisis discussions aside, I think this will be the start of a new beginning for IT management. I have been thinking about this topic a lot lately, and I wanted to share some ideas on what I hope Atera can do in the future.

I would love to see the ability to have set "intelligent" actions taken by ChatGPT within Atera. For example, I would like to see a ticket come in with a set of specific attributes or keywords that we can build into automation for ChatGPT. When it sees these specific ticket attributes or keywords, it automatically responds to the client with a slightly variable but scripted ticket response—making it seem like a live agent is responding but keeping on topic. Then it will automatically run specific scripts to resolve the issue at hand. Once that is complete, it will send the client a second scripted but variable response to confirm that the task is resolved/completed. If the client agrees, the ticket will be auto-closed. If the client responds with further needs outside the automation, Atera will alert the technician for further diagnostics.

It would be a game changer if Atera could mature into this feature set. We, as a community, would be able to share our ChatGPT automation and start to build an AI technician backed by real-world experience. Providing better and faster support to our clients without adding more skilled technicians.

Please let me know what ideas you all have, and I know this will hurt the job market for techs if this comes to fruition. We can all see the writing on the wall regarding AGI and the workforce we are accustomed to. I only ask you to ignore that for this discussion and dream of a future feature set you want to see.

Thanks,

Taylor Anderson

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Comments

  • hleavens
    hleavens Member Posts: 9
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    Is there a "practice dummy" computer/log in/system where new training employees (technicians) can get in and mess with the web site and learn by hands on without damaging anything/the company? We have been trying to get one set up at work, and it has been a task. It would be nice to see a walk-through training> if this happens, here are some options> click this button and it will take you to this task so you can do XYZ to fix this issue (For the more common/practical/etc issues).

    The directions on the site are very intuitive and descriptive, but I'm a hands-on learner and it doesn't always work for me when I try to read it.

    (I know it's a big ask- just curious if this is already an option or something that might happen in the future?)

  • tanderson
    tanderson Member Posts: 204 ✭✭✭✭
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    @hleavens Unfortunately, there is no dummy account. Atera wants you to pay for another tech license. You could set up a fake site with a test PC you have and test things that way. Keep in mind if you upgrade your subscription level, it upgrades it for all users, and when you add a new user, you can not add it at a cheaper level with fewer features. The new user will be whatever plan you are on currently.

  • hleavens
    hleavens Member Posts: 9
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    @tanderson

    I appreciate your speedy responses! That's about what we were thinking, and my boss will pay for it, but I thought I would ask just in case. I am trying to get all caught up to speed as quickly as I can, and sometimes it takes a while trying to jump back and forth.

    I was also told there might be a class or something equivalent? I spent a week watching all the video's I could find, but my boss was talking about setting me up in something like this. Is that a real thing? I haven't seen anywhere to sign up for anything like that.

    No doubt the Chat AI helps!

    Thank you!

  • tanderson
    tanderson Member Posts: 204 ✭✭✭✭
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    @hleavens Not a problem! Happy to help. I am not aware of any classes per se. You can view the webinar page: Atera's webinars and training for MSPs IT departments! or the Knowledge Base: Atera Support. That is all I know of. The best to ask would be @nina ; she would be the person to be able to answer that!

  • [Deleted User]
    [Deleted User] Posts: 0
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    Any comments on my suggestions ? does anyone else you think this would be useful ?

  • dyoder
    dyoder Member Posts: 52 ✭✭✭
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    I know all the new AI models are doing really cool things recently. But I tell you what I would really love, is for the core RMM features of Atera to be far more robust and featureful.

    I saw another post from @nina about an uptick in new Atera customers coming from ConnectWise. As much as I detest ConnectWise, those customers certainly aren't coming to Atera for their features. A lot of the older players in the RMM space have far more automation features that Atera just doesn't have yet. It would be great if we could get there first, then add on all the shiny new AI stuff.

  • rob.williams
    rob.williams Member Posts: 15
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    Personally I think Atera should be focusing on the core features that we all need/want - whilst AI integration can be useful, there are still many fundamental features of the platform that just aren't finished.

    I'd much rather see development going in to the core features we all expect than new stuff that we will struggle to use without the basics first.

  • dyoder
    dyoder Member Posts: 52 ✭✭✭
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    These are good features, but they certainly don't require ChatGPT or any AI to implement. These features are just simple reports that haven't been implemented. Improvement in Atera's basic reporting is severly lacking. The premium "advanced" reporting doesn't do this either.

  • [Deleted User]
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    Yes, if we could access it from power BI then we could just do it ourselves.

  • yasminproduct16
    yasminproduct16 Internal Posts: 16
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  • hleavens
    hleavens Member Posts: 9
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    I wouldn't mind seeing a "Suggestions" implemented through Chat. I know there are several! I see them! But when we get the emails of "windows updates" and 4/20 have been completed with errors, it would be time saving to have the chat pop up with suggestion. Sometimes the chat doesn't always understand what I am trying to get to! (Human error of course) :)

  • dyoder
    dyoder Member Posts: 52 ✭✭✭
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    @Yasmin from Atera - you asked for it 😉

    1. Dynamic groups instead of, or in addition to, the current folders. You recently partnered with ESET, please check out their management console to see what dynamic groups can do. ConnectWise, Datto RMM, and N-able N-central all do this.
    2. Event based scheduling. Having scripts or some kind of action occur on an event schedule: user login/logoff, endpoint startup/shutdown, wifi disconnect/reconnect, any interval of idle activity / resume from idle activity, on RMM events (this would be like when an agent goes offline/online, when an IT Automation Policy executes, or any other RMM events that occur outside the endpoint itself). Event based schedules like this exist in most other RMM providers. Again, check out ESET's management console - because of how ESET implements dynamic groups, it also inherently supports event based scheduling. Once you have an event system in place you can add those events to an endpoint's main page - this is something that NinjaOne does extremely well and greatly aids in seeing what has happened on an endpoint very quickly.
    3. State management. This is something that ConnectWise and several other RMM providers do very well. With these other RMM systems, you can define the state of the endpoint as you'd like to have it - installed software, wifi profiles, power/battery profiles, auto lock/logoff, etc. When an endpoint falls outside of the desired state, it is quickly brought back into the correct state. ConnectWise in particular has a really useful software whitelist/blacklist that can trigger alerts and/or run scripts when specific software is installed/uninstalled on an endpoint.
    4. IMPROVED REPORTING. Atera has lots of data, but so much of it is inaccessible to us. The basic "classic" reports are very surface-level and don't actually show me any actionable information, nor can I drill down into them. The "advanced" reports give you an updated interface and barely more information, but are certainly not worth the additional cost just to have them. Here's an actionable report I might want to see: all endpoints without SSD boot drive, or all laptops, or all laptops with a battery health < 82%, etc. Once again, look at ESET's management console for their reporting system - not only can you create custom reports with extreme detail, but on the web interface they can be drilled into. But ESET isn't the only one that can product very detailed reports out-of-the-box: ConnectWise, N-able, and Kaseya all do a fantastic job of advanced reporting - the reports are ugly as sin and they're a nightmare to create, but they contain all the data you need them to in almost any way you can imagine it.

    There are lots of other things that would really make the RMM part so much more useful. Atera specific improvements might be things like:

    1. Decouple tickets/contacts/endpoints (many-to-one and one-to-many relationships instead).
    2. Integrate existing data points into existing functionality (like pair top processes with the sample points on the CPU and memory graphs to make them more meaningful - use your imagination, go crazy).
    3. Make it easier to hunt down problems (this is very vague, and I'm sure there are a lot of ideas here, but one that would make things easier for me is to include the name of the Threshold Profile and the Threshold Item on alerts).
    4. One-click "Send Logs to Atera". This is one thing that really bugs me as I occasionally have problems with the Atera agent for various reasons. Most of the time the process to collect the information that Atera needs to troubleshoot the problem requires me to interact with the endpoint(s) in question. But I don't want to schedule time to interrupt my clients so that I can collect data for my vendor to fix a problem with their software. I don't mean for this to be mean or rude, but my clients are paying me to maintain their endpoints, so it doesn't look very good when I have to interrupt them to fix a problem on my end. MSP360 does an incredible job at this - I've been using them for backup at my clients for at least 5yrs. They have a simple process to collect their own agent's logs plus a day from the Windows event logs and automatically send them to support and optionally attach them to an existing ticket. And the end user never gets interrupted.
    5. Pay Dave Long for PSAtera and maintain it yourself. This is one of the most useful tools for working with Atera, but as your API changes PSAtera will need to be updated and it doesn't look like Dave has the time to do it. Syncro has their own Powershell module that is very powerful - it can do things like create tickets, add time to the ticket, run scripts from your Syncro account, send emails, upload files, etc.

    Not related to RMM, but another idea is to decouple Atera add-on services from accounts where appropriate. For instance, you may have 1 person tasked with admin things - they might need access to advanced reporting and invoices from within Atera, but would not need to manage any endpoints or interact with tickets. In this case assigning a license for advanced reporting and some limited-scope user account to that user makes more sense than purchasing an all-access pass for them. Similarly, another user might be in charge of onboarding and needs access to Network Discovery, so allow Network Discovery to only be assigned to that person and not everyone. This makes the value for Atera go up because now growing MSP's aren't paying for things they don't need.

    Here are some ideas that would set Atera apart because no one has these features:

    1. Conditional reboot schedules based on endpoint state (like idle time or user logon status). For instance I would want to automatically reboot an endpoint after updates are installed but only if there is no user logged in. If a user is logged in, I would want to instead notify them.
    2. Trend data for alerts. Alerts are generated all the time, but in what frequency, how do alerts relate to one another, are there patterns that can be realized (ie: similar time, endpoint configuration, event ID, network, etc). This would help discover root causes for issues by being able to correlate the data from multiple endpoints and/or customers to realize trends on what's happening.
    3. Timeline of events that have occurred or will occur on an endpoint. For instance, when I go to an endpoint's device page it would be great to see that it was rebooted 2 days ago, then Sharon logged in, then some app was installed, then Bill logged in a day later and opened a ticket, and the endpoint is scheduled to be restarted automatically this coming Saturday due to updates applied from IT Automation Policy named "ABC". Then give me a calendar view with filters that I can adjust to show me what's happening on the endpoints now and in the future. This can help with finding downtime, planning large software deployments, onboarding/offboarding, etc. All of this information is currently present in Atera but it requires so much hunting and browser tabs to get to!

    Honestly, I feel like there are so many other areas that Atera can focus on to make it an excellent RMM and PSA platform, and none of those areas include ChatGPT and 3rd party integrations. This is all core platform stuff.

  • mbudke
    mbudke Member Posts: 87 ✭✭✭
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  • gavin
    gavin Member Posts: 1
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    I just started a trial and I have to say that what Atera does I'm really liking, but it falls short in many areas that would have taken just a little more effort. Examples:

    Why can't I create a filtered view for device type? (Laptop, Hyper-V Guest, etc.) Great feature that does NOT take advantage of all the data an agent has

    Why can't I assign policies based on VIEWS so that devices are dynamically assigned policies?

    I've installed the agent on a customers server. WHY can't I scan for and install agents on all computers on the network? (RMM 101)

    These are just a few basic things that are already turning me away from Atera. Such a shame since the above are NOT difficult things. It's just a database.

  • dyoder
    dyoder Member Posts: 52 ✭✭✭
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    Why can't I create a filtered view for device type? (Laptop, Hyper-V Guest, etc.) Great feature that does NOT take advantage of all the data an agent has

    This would be great - but you're right, Atera collects lots of data about an endpoint, but exposes a limited amount of that to be used for searching/sorting/grouping.

    Why can't I assign policies based on VIEWS so that devices are dynamically assigned policies?

    Amen! Dynamic application of policies based on group membership - I've been asking for this since I started using Atera. I do not understand why everyone else has this and Atera still does not.

    I've installed the agent on a customers server. WHY can't I scan for and install agents on all computers on the network? (RMM 101)

    To do this, you need to also purchase Network Discovery from Atera. There are several other 3rd party tools (both free and paid) that can do this too. Just choose whichever fits your budget. I agree that this should be included in the base RMM subscription though.

  • tanderson
    tanderson Member Posts: 204 ✭✭✭✭
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    @gavin @dyoder

    Why can't I create a filtered view for device type? (Laptop, Hyper-V Guest, etc.) Great feature that does NOT take advantage of all the data an agent has

    You can do this. Add the device to a folder like "Virtual Machine" or "Printer" then create a View that filters by that folder for that client.

    Why can't I assign policies based on VIEWS so that devices are dynamically assigned policies?

    You can do this as well. Just apply the Policy to the Folder.

  • dyoder
    dyoder Member Posts: 52 ✭✭✭
    edited August 2023
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    @tanderson Yes, that is one way to get this to partially work. But what I'm talking about, and maybe @gavin too, is dynamic groups. In this case a group is created that has membership requirements and can apply to all customers or a subset of them. Endpoints are added and removed automatically based on the group settings.

    Essentially what we're looking for is to take views from the Devices page and turn them into actionable groups that we can apply policies/scripts/thresholds to.

    The current folder option is very poor at doing this because endpoints must be manually added or removed, and they can only be operated on in the context of a single customer. While this might be less of an issue if your clients are all in different verticals, when you have clients that occupy the same vertical and share software and configuration, it leaves a lot to be desired.

  • dyoder
    dyoder Member Posts: 52 ✭✭✭
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    So apparently this forum does not like mobile. The mentions didn't work when posted from mobile, and the edit I made appeared to work, but is not visible now. Furthermore, it looks like I can't edit the last post I made anymore??

    @tanderson and @gavin, if you haven't seen it already, I mentioned you both in the above post…