Ask Me Anything Webinar Recap

August 17, 2021 |  Data
8 min

Learn more about finding underutilized staff computers, setting up virtual desktops, LabMaps and more.

In a recent webinar, our Customer Success team answered questions from LabStats customers. Explore more in-depth answers and additional resources below.

Watch the full webinar

Has LabStats been used successfully on staff computers to find underutilized resources?

Yes, we have dozens of schools that have LabStats installed on all their machines–including staff and faculty machines. 

Often, staff are issued a desktop and a laptop and one is used all the time while the other is not. We’ve had quite a few schools have really good success in issuing a single machine to each staff member, and let them choose what type of machine they receive. They don’t purchase both anymore and the school is able to save money.

We’ve also observed the following benefits of monitoring faculty computers:

  • Right-size spending on faculty technology resources
  • Provide “wish-list” software or hardware
  • Verify appropriate usage
  • Find out if faculty prefer a particular hardware setup over another, such as desktop vs. laptop PCs and possibly reduce hardware they don’t use
  • Adjust the refresh schedule according to usage to keep heavy users happy and save money on rarely used equipment
  • Provide a teacher-viewer login to run reports on specific classroom activity
Related: Tracking Usage Beyond Student Computers 

Can group association be done in a batch rather than individually?

Yes, you can use the Station Manager to do it manually or set up the Active Directory integration to set up your group hierarchy. 

To get started with the Active Directory integration, you’ll need the IP or Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) of the Active Directory, and determine which organizational unit (OU) to use as the Group Root. The OU must contain all other OUs and computers that will be included in LabStats.

Navigate to Admin, click External Systems, then click Active Directory Settings. Enter the information gathered from Active Directory. See next steps.

Support Article: Group Hierarchy via Active Directory Integration

How can we get historical usage reports, pre Covid, so we can justify the removal of some of our general access machines?

Run a Peak Usage History report and select the date range from Jan-Mar 2020 (or any historical timeframe). 

Peak Usage History Report

The Peak Usage History report shows the highest number of computers in-use at the same time.

Support Article: Peak Usage History

Are there current video tutorials available?

Yes, check out LabStats 101 to watch the following video tutorials: 

There are also step-by-step videos on our Support Site:

Related: LabStats 101 Tutorial Videos

How do I start tracking Zoom and Microsoft Teams?

Go to Application Manager and define your apps to start tracking them. In the LabStats portal, navigate to Applications then click Manager.

With LabStats, it is possible to track both Web and Desktop applications. These applications come either pre-populated, added via Software Inventory, or can be added manually.

Support Article: Application Manager

How can non-persistent virtual desktops in VM Ware Horizon View that are not used by the same clients stay in their groups?

We recommend configuring the desktops to utilize a consistent range of MAC addresses or using a fixed set of host names to keep them in their same groups.

LabStats uses MAC Addresses as unique identifiers for stations. This allows LabStats to determine whether the data should go under an existing station or if a new one should be created. This works well in physical environments, but should be carefully managed in virtual environments. 

Many virtual machines (VMs) have variable MAC Addresses, meaning the addresses can change every time the VM is spun up. In large virtual environments, this can create thousands of excess stations in LabStats. Excess MAC Addresses could lead to licensing problems and can also fragment usage data by spreading out login time (ie: an hour here or there among thousands of different station entries), rendering it almost useless.

Depending on your environment, we may recommend one of the following these workarounds.

Support Article: How to Resolve Duplicate Stations

When running a Login Summary report, why are stations that have no logins not showing up in the report?

Currently the Login Summary Report report only includes applications and machines that have one or more logins within the time period. To find zero-use data, follow the Finding Zero-Use tutorial.

LabStats tracks when you power on a computer, log in, and launch an application. That data is funneled into reports so you can see the most and least used computers. 

The least used computers are those that have been logged into at least once in your chosen timeframe. Zero-usage computers have zero logins in your chosen timeframe. Students may not know where a computer or a whole lab is located (a discoverability issue). We see this happening a lot with basement labs or computers in rooms without windows. A single zero-use computer located in a lab that is otherwise being used may have a broken component like a monitor, keyboard or mouse.

Support Article: Finding Zero-Use Computers and Applications

What are best practices for incorporating LabMaps on electronic signage?

When you create a LabMap you can save it as an html file and then embed it in your school’s website or post it on your digital signage. Best practices depend on application- size of monitor, viewing distance, number of maps, etc. If you have multiple spaces, you can set up a carousel of maps.