WAPT 1.8 : Stear clear of heterogeneous parks!

by | Jan 21, 2020 | WAPT

“Is this real life? Is this just a fantasy?”

Attention, this is not a dream, WAPT 1.8 is (finally) here! Just like you, I have had to be patient before I began writing about the new version; But, it is with great pleasure that I get to present you with newest functionalities of WAPT!

So yes, WAPT 1.8 has been longed for and desired for, for many months, although that didn’t stop us from releasing new features along this journey! WAPT Self Service can testify to this! First and foremost, before I prove to you that the wait was worth it, I would like to take a moment to congratulate you for your patience! Bravo and thank you!

Menu of the new functions of WAPT 1.8!

Version 1.8 of WAPT is a continuation of WAPT 1.7, with no less than 3 new major features integrated into the software, allowing you to spruce up your IT park. Of course you asked us : “But what will WAPT 1.8 contain?” We have to admit, it wasn’t really a question we had to ask ourselves.The numerous feedback we got from our users allowed us to easily determine what aspects of WAPT should be a priority for development! Once again, all thanks to you!

We wanted to make WAPT 1.8 a version that finally allows you to stear clear of heterogeneous fleets in order to standardize the management of your park. For that reason, we didn’t skimp on the features :

Manage your MAC and Linux computers with WAPT 1.8

After many months of development, we have finished designing agents adapted to MAC and Linux environments. Our developers will testify, that it wasn’t an easy task (Shout out to Apple)! This innovation allows us to finally offer a viable and centralized solution to our System Admins. who manage their heterogenous IT parks! With WAPT 1.8 you can manage all three environments in the same console, in real time! Now we’ll go into detail :

How does a WAPT agent work?

Following the installation of WAPT, you have to deploy an agent onto each computer in your fleet. As soon as the agent is active, it uploads the information that’s configured for that specific PC, which it receives from the management console. Thus, each agent will automatically upload the various information allowing you to monitor and administer your park. Of course, it is still possible to filter the information displayed in the console for greater clarity. As the WAPT agent is able to report all types of information, it is possible to use WAPT to manage a computers inventory in real time!

In the past, the agent only worked for Windows (although this allowed you to maintain a good part of your IT park already). Now, the agent is also available for Linux and Mac environments. This way it’s easier to control your whole heterogenous park!

Software deployment in a Linux environment with WAPT?

Overall yes, it is technically possible to deploy software onto a Linux machine! Although fans of Tux (Linux’s mascot) will not necessarily be impressed by this new release, but that’s normal!

It is indeed no longer a secret, the origin of WAPT is closely linked to this operating system. It was even the “apt-get” command that influenced the decision when it came to naming our software: “Apt-get for Windows”, and like that WAPT was born!

The primary gain of having Mac and Linux agents is not to be able to just simplify remote software deployment, we have to look a little further! ( or in this case, a bit lower).

WAPT's mock Linux logo

Somewhere in a parallel universe…

Why use WAPT to manage MAC and Linux computers?

Similar to the agent for Windows, the agents for MAC and Linux machines also feed information back into the management console. It is therefore posible to integrate : software deployment and configuration remotely, real-time inventory management,personalized WAPT Self Service (not yet available for Linux machines, but were working on it!) etc. Anything is possible!

The advantage of WAPT is that you are now able to efficiently manage these different operating systems via a centralized console that contains all the data of your IT park. to give you a concrete example : You can know easily deploy a configuration package for a department in your organization, without worrying about the enviornment of your useres ( *the package will still need to be coded to differentiate it)

Small specificity : The WAPT console remains exclusivly for a Windows enviornment. It is not possible to launch it on another operating system.. for the moment!

A couple details about WAPT’s agents for MAC

WAPT's mock Macintosh logo

Somewhere in a parallel universe…

Developments of MAC agents are not as far advanced as Linux agents. Although, agents for MAC enviornments are still readily available with WAPT 1.8, but in the form of a public beta.

The agents for this version are functional, but the domain (or circut) of Macintosh is far more complicated than it seems. Certain elements still need to be fine-tuned, like its compatibility with Catalina, or the mangaement of WAPT Exit with PC’s that never really shut down, for example. Savages I tell ya!

Mac and Linux agents : WAPT Community or WAPT Enterprise?

We didn’t ponder on that question for long. These new agents directly affect the heart of the software and modify the overall operation of WAPT. So we thought it was only logical to make these functionalities accessable for everyone. Therefore, agents for MAC and Linux will be available for both versions of WAPT : Community and Enterprise. And with that, we have crossed over to a new horizon for the management of your IT parks!

Want to discover the new MAC and Linux agents? Check out WAPT Community!

Manage your remote repositories with WAPT 1.8

This is a totally new tab, aptly named, “Repositories”. Which you can discover solely in WAPT Enterprise 1.8. From this tab you will be able to make your WAPT agents (Windows or Linux) remote repositories and manage them conveniently in one place. Now, let’s discover what you can do in this new tab :

  • The button ” add a rule” allows you to indicate the function each agent should adopt. Numerous filters (domain, IP agent, public IP, hostname, site) allow you to be more precise when editing your rules.
  • The buttons “move rule up” and “move rule down” allow you to maintain the hierarchy of established rules. Although,it is possible that a PC fulfills the criteria of several rules. In this case, WAPT will always apply the configurations of the highest ranked rule in the console.
  • The column on the right reports feedback on the status of your remote repositories: synchronization status, connection status, computer name, etc.
  • On the same side of the window it is also possible to synchronize the repositories of your choice, update the index, or consult the synchronization changelog.

Why use WAPT 1.8 to manage your remote repositories?

During synchronization, all of the packages (WAPT, machine, WUA) will replicate in the remote repositories. Therefore it is possible to create a repository for each site in your organization. This method allows you to significantly reduce your bandwidth consumption.

Parallel to the rest of the information displayed in the console, you are able to view the status of each repository in real time, which allows you to know if the repository can be synchronized ( or for example, its progress).

In addition, the systems agent makes this functionality operate completely independent of the remote repositories in place. The server does not need to see them to interact with them. As long as the WAPT server is visible, you can move forward!

How to turn a WAPT agent into a remote repository?

You can say goodbye to “Syncthings” and “Rsync” for creating and managing your remote repositories because with WAPT 1.8 you can make an agent become a remote repository in just a few clicks!

This feature is available with Debian Buster, Jessie, Stretch, Centos or Windows, you just need to install a WAPT agent on a Linux machine to get started. Next you’ll have to deploy 2 packages (Remote Repo Conf and Remote Repo Nginx) to specify that this Linux machine is a remote repository. WAPT takes care of the replication of the main servers repository onto the remote repositories that you have previously defined, and voila, that’s it!

We have also developed a system similar to the “Sites and Services of Active Directory” system in order to know the original IP address of the PC that serves as the remote repository. You can therefore abandon DNS configurations and just leave the “wapt-get.ini” file.

Going further with WAPT Enterprise

WAPT Enterprise is an ideal tool for rapid software deployment, for carrying out a complete inventory of your park or to even control your Windows Updates. A number of functions are also designed to simplify the administration of even the largest fleets. Still have doubts? Don’t worry, you can benefit from a free month of WAPT Enterprise and see for yourself!

And after WAPT 1.8?

So, you’re wondering if you’ll have to wait a while for the next update? Let me reassure you by saying, don’t worry, the next update will be released way faster than WAPT 1.8. We already have ideas about the evolution of the software and its expectations. Hence, here is a brief overview of what we have in mind for the next version :

  • Complete WAPT agents for MAC environments
  • Implement ACL’s to allow greater rights mangement in the console
  • Migrate to Python3

Although, keep in mind, that this list remains between you and I, and should not be considered an “official” roadmap for WAPT. With the end of Python2 (the script language used by WAPT) approaching in April, you should hear back from us sooner than expected! In the meantime, feel free to check out and have fun with WAPT 1.8,and give us your feedback on its release! Make sure to let us know about changes or additions you would like to see in future versions of WAPT via the comments section of this article!