Release Notes

What's New in Version 2022.1

July 2022

Welcome to the July 2022 release of Alloy Navigator Express. There are many new features and enhancements that we hope you will like.

Administer Alloy Navigator Express from the web browser

Quickly fine-tune business logic, manage accounts and permissions, and configure single sign-on providers from anywhere, anytime. The new, web-based Admin Center provides access to core administrative tasks directly from your web browser, without needing to install anything.

Even though the web-based Admin Center has been developed with our cloud customers in mind, on-premise customers can also leverage it to perform main admin tasks on the fly. The Admin Center is automatically installed and configured with the Web App and is immediately available for technicians with administrative permissions.

Allow multiple choices from a single list

Provide a simplified, more intuitive user experience with user-defined fields supporting multiple selections. Instead of dealing with multiple lists, users get a clear selection mechanism, widely used on the web and in mobile apps, where they can choose multiple items at a time. Long lists automatically include Select all items and filtering options.

Let customers cancel their tickets

Save time for both end-users and technicians by allowing requesters to cancel their tickets. If users want to confirm that assistance is no longer required, they can close their tickets themselves on update.

To control whether requesters can close their tickets, use a special workflow parameter in Settings (Customization > General > Workflow Configuration > Ticket Automation). You may also want to use the brand-new Admin Center.

Make remote support a breeze with TeamViewer integration

Deliver immediate remote support to internal users and customers via TeamViewer. Invite people to your TeamViewer session and remote into their computers or mobile devices as though you were there.

To enable the TeamViewer integration, use the Customization > General >Workflow Configuration > Integrations > TeamViewer parameters in the Settings App or Admin Center.

INFO: For details, see Integrations: TeamViewer integration.

See the complete asset management picture with Microsoft Intune integration

Import your organization’s mobile phones, tablets, and laptops from Microsoft Intune to leverage Alloy Navigator's robust Asset Management offering and get the complete picture.

To enable the Intune integration, use the Customization > General > Workflow Configuration > Integrations > Microsoft Intune parameters in the Settings App or Admin Center.

INFO: For details, see Integrations: Microsoft Intune integration.

Stay productive with improved performance

The Web App has been optimized to run faster. You'll certainly feel it, especially when working with hierarchical data structures.

For optimal experience, Alloy Navigator Express self-assesses its performance and gives practical tips on how to speed up your current data view when there is room for improvement.

Improve security with Trusted Platform Module information

In this milestone, we added a new capability to find out which computers support the hardware-based security features provided by the Trusted Platform Module (TPM) chip. The detection of detailed TPM information comes with the latest version of Alloy Audit Tools included with this release.

INFO: For a complete list of audit-related improvements and bug fixes, see Audit Tools Update Release Notes.

Deliver Linux and macOS audit snapshots over FTP, FTPS, or SFTP

Added proper support for delivery of Linux and macOS audit snapshots from remote sites. You no longer need to rely on bash scripts to deliver audit snapshots over FTP, FTPS, or SFTP. Deployable packages for FTP audit sources now include inventory agents for all supported platforms.

INFO: For instructions, see Help: Administration Guide: Deploying Inventory Analyzer package for FTP delivery.

Analyze more trends with new reports

To continue the success and growth of Alloy Navigator Express analytics and provide the most comprehensive data to stakeholders, we've expanded the collection of 120+ canned reports. The added reports include:

  • Library Item Utilization

    Increase the effectiveness of your equipment lending library. The report shows the equipment checkout history to reveal how the equipment lending library is being used.

  • Computers to Upgrade

    Plan hardware upgrades in advance. The report compares the RAM, HDD, CPU, and OS info to thresholds you specify and lists the computers that need to be upgraded or replaced.

  • Software Licenses Allocated by Person

    Get a clear view of software license allocations per person. The report lists all the software licenses allocated to a given user to help you recover or reassign those allocations.

Discover keyboard shortcuts directly from the user interface

For all the people who love the speed and efficiency of shortcut keys, we've provided a handy way to get a listing of all the keyboard shortcuts in one place. Click the question mark in the upper-right corner of the screen and select Keyboard Shortcuts. This will open a help page showing all the shortcuts you can use.

Work faster with automatic hyperlinking

To save you time and effort, URLs that you paste or type into a ticket's description, activity, or any other HTML field are automatically turned into hyperlinks now. For example, "https://www.alloysoftware.com" will become a clickable link https://www.alloysoftware.com.

Quick access to text snippets

The more standard replies, greetings, and other reusable text snippets you have in your back pocket, the more important it is to properly organize them for easy access. Use the new Manage Snippets shortcut on the sidebar to immediately access all your snippets, categorize them for easy search, or create new ones. Managing your text snippets has never been easier.

Get more control over concurrent user sessions

Get more control over concurrent user sessions to guarantee that no inactive connections are consuming your user licenses. The Last Activity timestamp in Settings (Accounts and Roles > User Sessions) now correspond to the period after which Alloy Navigator Express considers inactive concurrent user sessions idle and auto-terminates them.

Terminate non-responding tasks

Terminate automated jobs if something goes wrong—for example when a job is not responding. We believe that our cloud customers would especially appreciate this feature. However, manual job termination is available in both cloud-hosted and on-prem environments.

To save your effort, the Automation Server would automatically terminate non-responding tasks after one hour.

Workflow parameters at your fingertips

To streamline navigation through workflow configuration, all workflow parameters are grouped into categories now. Categories are organized into a compact, collapsible hierarchical tree structure.

Control the appearance of HTML content in mobile apps

Now you can control how Knowledge Base articles, Service Catalog items, and announcements appear in Alloy mobile apps. Standard cascading style sheet (CSS) rules for mobile apps are available in the Settings App (Customization > General > CSS Styles > [Object Class] > Mobile Apps).

Upgrade to secure token-based API authentication method

To improve security, we removed the deprecated and undocumented option to supply credentials of SQL Server accounts when making API calls.

INFO: For details, see Removal of the legacy API authentication method that uses SQL Server accounts.

Other enhancements and resolved issues

Web App

  • Downloading attachments got faster.

  • The first attempt to sign in under a Windows domain account without providing the domain name no longer fails with the "Your account "DOMAIN\username" is not an active Alloy Navigator account" error.

    NOTE: LDAP authentication allows Windows domain users to omit their domain name when there is only one "Domain Credentials record in the system. For details, see Administration Guide: Enabling LDAP authentication.

  • Alloy Navigator Express now successfully terminates idle concurrent sessions even when the app is open on inactive browser tabs.

  • Resolved the issue with customizing data views for Networks. Previously, any attempts to customize views in the Networks grid failed with a "GetFilterCriteriaSQL: Unknown grid: Networks_GridBrowser" error.

  • Advanced Search now applies all its Restrict search results to conditions as expected. Previously, restricting search results to a date interval could fail.

Reports

  • Inserting horizontal lines in reports no longer adds empty spaces underneath.

  • Resolved the issue with dependent report parameters not getting updated on changes to the main parameter. The issue occurred only when that main parameter allowed multiple choices.

Asset management workflow

  • Purged the deprecated built-in logic that automatically updated the Purchase Date field of IT asset) records whenever they were linked to a new Purchase Order. All such automatic updates should be done by the workflow engine.

Alloy mobile apps and the API

  • The latest available version of the Alloy Inventory Scanner eliminates the compatibility issue with the recent versions of the API.

  • Implemented proper handling of invalid XML characters in API requests.

  • Alloy Self-Service Assistant bot for Microsoft Teams requires that the API is publicly accessible from the internet. The product documentation has been updated to highlight that fact.

Self Service Portal

  • Customizations made to predefined data views can no longer cause definition errors in other areas of the portal.

  • Fixed the issue with direct links for anonymous access. Direct links to Self Service Portal objects no longer fail with the "404 Not Found" error, but open specified objects after anonymous users provide their credentials.

Integration with email

  • The Mail Connector now applies the Incoming E-mail Handling settings (Mark as read, Mark as deleted, etc.) to all processed mail, including the messages that it did not use in the workflow. Previously, such "untouched" messages accumulated in the mailbox, causing the Mail Connector to attempt to process them at every run.

UI text and online documentation

  • In order to address the cultural sensitivity of the word “master” we switched the "master license" term to "main license."

  • Fixed a typo on the Signing in to the Mobile App page of the Mobile App User's Guide.

Desktop App

  • Resolved the issue when workflow actions configured to appear on the toolbar were missing from Knowledge Base articles.