About RU Server

Remote Utilities Server (hereinafter just "Server") is self-hosted server software that you can install on your premises. The Server integrates with Remote Utilities and enhances its capabilities with added features.

Our public server infrastructure can only provide the relay function. Whereas the self-hosted server can also work as a synchronization and authorization server.

The Server is free to use and doesn't require a license. You can learn more about its benefits on this page.

Server roles

The Server can perform three roles:

  • Relay server. The Server acts as an intermediary through which an Internet-ID connection is established.
  • Sync server. The Server is used for address book synchronization between multiple techs.
  • Authorization server. The Server stores access permissions and lets technicians authorize (log in) on remote Hosts.

A single Server installation can be set to perform multiple roles. Alternatively, you can install the Server on multiple machines and use each server for its own role.

Usage scenarios

One technician

You are a one-man shop providing remote support over the Internet to customers in your local area. By setting up your own relay server you may significantly improve connection speed and performance due to the sheer location of the server close to you (e.g. in the same LAN with your Viewer).

Using the sync server role may be overkill for the one tech scenario. Since you work alone you can simply do manual export or use Dropbox to access your address book on a different workstation. One caveat though is that the auto-import feature only works if the sync server role is enabled. So if you want to get your remote Hosts automatically added to your address book once they register on your self-hosted server, you must enable the sync role.

Similarly, using the authorization server role may not be needed for this scenario. You are the only user who connects to remote Hosts. You still need to authorize on remote Hosts in order to access them. But that means using the regular authorization methods that Host provides — Remote Utilities security or Windows security — instead of using a more sophisticated custom server security method.

If you establish remote connection exclusively within the same LAN (or VPN) you do not need a relay server. You may, however, need other two roles — sync server and authorization server — if you want to sync your address book through the server and use a centralized hub for remote access management respectively. This is normally the case in a multi-user environment (see further below).

Multiple technicians

A multi-tech environment is where the Server can be used to its fullest. The techs may have the following requirements:

  • All the techs need to access the same remote Hosts — so there should be a way to instantly sync the same address book among multiple techs.
  • Permissions must be set to ensure that techs view (or edit) the address book records they are allowed to view (or edit).
  • Remote Host security management must be centralized to allow the administrator to quickly revoke remote access, e.g. when a tech leaves the company.
  • Global sign-in — the techs should be able to sign in on the Server in their Viewer app. When signed in the techs can access the remote Hosts in one click without entering access credentials for each and every Host.

These requirements are met by the sync server and authorization server roles.

System requirements

  • Windows 10/8/7/Vista/XP or Windows Server 2012/2008/2003, 64-bit included.
  • No special hardware requirements. The Server can be installed on a regular workstation.

Summary

There are three roles that the self-hosted server can perform: relay, sync and authorization. You can enable all of them in a single server installation, or distribute the roles among multiple installations.

Depending on the number of techs and connection types you may need only some roles. The table below will help you determine which server roles may apply in your situation.

One technician Multiple technicians
Remote access via LAN/VPN If you are the only tech/admin working with the product exclusively via a LAN or VPN, you may not need the server at all. Just use the direct connection type and integrate the program with Active Directory.
  • Relay: Not needed
  • Sync: Recommended
  • Auth: Recommended
Remote access via the Internet
  • Relay: Recommended
  • Sync: Recommended1
  • Auth: Not needed
  • Relay: Recommended
  • Sync: Recommended
  • Auth: Recommended
Both/Mixed
  • Relay: Recommended
  • Sync: Recommended1
  • Auth: Not needed
  • Relay: Recommended
  • Sync: Recommended
  • Auth: Recommended

1You will have to enable the sync server role, if you want to get your newly installed remote Hosts automatically added into your address book, i.e. use the auto-import feature.

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