Citrix brings remote support service to SMBs

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Citrix brings remote support service to SMBs

Citrix is expanding its GoToAssist remote support service to SMBs.

The new GoToAssist Express service will target both smaller companies and IT consultants who provide support for SMBs.

As with the larger GoToAssist Corporate offering, the Express service will allow an IT professional to remotely connect to a system and take control in order to diagnose problems and perform maintenance.

Citrix GoToAssist product marketing manager Brenda Dettinger told that the new service will primarily target IT consultants who traditionally provide support to SMBs and are often tasked with providing support to multiple clients spread out over large areas.

However, IT consultants are not the only audience being targeted by the new service.

The company also expects to garner interest from companies that install and provide support for complex financial software tools, as well as the so-called 'guru' users who just want to help a friend or family member with a problem.

As such, the company is offering monthly and day-long subscriptions in addition to the standard annual subscription fee.

"There are a lot of people who don't need a remote access system 24-7," explained Dettinger.

"As a result, we developed a whole plan for the computer guru."

For the subscription fee, users will be offered full access to the client machine including the ability to transfer files remotely, on-screen drawing and note-typing modes for training, and cross-platform support for both MacOS and Windows systems.

Additionally, the GoToExpress service will include a new 'unattended' support feature in which a service provider can log on to a client machine at a later time and perform maintenance services after business hours.

With such power for service providers, however, do come security risks. Though the user has the ability to terminate the remote service from the client machine at any time, some of the security monitoring features of the corporate service are not available in Express.

As such, Dettinger warns that clients should exercise some caution when opening up their machines to outside service providers, particularly the unattended access feature.

"You need to have a certain amount of trust in your consultant," said Dettinger.

"If you're not willing to get up and go to lunch with your IT support person there, you wouldn't want to use unattended support."

The company plans to service for an annual fee of US$660, along with a monthly subscription of US$69 and a 24 hour 'day-pass' for US$9.95.

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