Improved Security Management in the Management Portal of RES ONE Workspace 10.1

We introduced a new web-based Management Portal for RES ONE Workspace in the 10.0 release earlier this year. Hopefully you’ve already been working with the new modern, easy-to-use Management Portal and finding its simplified way to identify and troubleshoot issues that occur across the workspace, and gaining increased visibility of how people are interacting with their workspaces is driving value in your RES deployments. To see how easy it is for the Management Portal to be a valuable tool for your helpdesk administrators, check out this video blog where we highlight key capabilities from the previous release.  In 10.1, IT teams can expect even more enhancements.

Simplified Application Security

The focus of this release can be summed up in a single word: Security. We know this is top of mind for organizations, especially as increasing threats to the environment seem more rampant than ever. This release helps to mitigate threats to your environment by simplifying application security management for IT administrators by delivering:

  • A streamlined approach to create, remove and maintain application security rules
  • An easier way to create and maintain application security rules, without touching the Management Portal
  • Simplified whitelist management, which supports the ability to approve based on signed publisher and product

Let’s dig deeper into each one of these areas to show you the true value of the RES ONE Workspace Management Portal and why your IT organization needs these capabilities.

Redesign of Application Security

When you think about RES ONE Workspace and security, there is a broad range of security features available to secure your workspace. One of the key principles for the Management Portal is that we are not blanketly converting functionality from the Windows Console. Instead we are designing from lessons learned, drafting user stories and delivering the optimal user experience to drive value for you the customer. In this 10.1 release, we’ve redesigned and improved Application Security.

Why do we need to redesign?

Application Security has been a very powerful feature for many years in RES ONE Workspace to deliver secure, context aware workspaces. A few years ago we added whitelist/blacklist file hash capabilities to make this even more effective. However, by talking to our customers we learned that the configuration and maintenance of Application Security in the Windows Console can become complex for the large organizations. The 10.1 release of the RES ONE Workspace Management Portal simplifies how you create, remove and maintain application security rules.

Stay tuned for an upcoming video blog, where I will show you how this redesign in the Management Portal looks and how it will make the life of the IT security administrator easier.

Configure and Maintain Application Security Without Touching the Management Portal

In addition to security, automation is a key driver in many organizations within their digital transformation. For many years, our building blocks have been a powerful feature in RES ONE Workspace to interchange configuration between environments and to automate your workspaces. With the release of the Management Portal, we deliver the first version of a RESTful API to automate your workspaces without touching the Management Portal. A common used and easy to understand API framework. Because the focus of the 10.1 release of the Management Portal we are excited to deliver an API for the following use cases:

  • Creation of Executable whitelist rules
  • Creation of File Hash whitelist or blacklist rules
  • Updating an existing Executable whitelist rules
  • Updating an existing File Hash whitelist or blacklist rule

You can browse to the URL/swagger location of the Management Portal and you will see the graphical interface of the available use cases within the RES ONE Workspace API:

In an upcoming video blog (coming soon!) I will show you how this API works and empowers the automation of your workspaces.

Preview: Simplify Whitelist Management with File Certificate Support

With the redesign of application security and the availability of the API now in RES ONE Workspace, the life of IT security administrator will become much easier. However, we have also learned that maintaining a whitelist can become especially challenging when software vendors force you into a continuous delivery models. Imagine that you have built a whitelist of application security rules based on file hashes, and updates are performed on your operating system or applications. You need to maintain the whitelisted file hashes immediately, otherwise applications and services will not run anymore. We recognize this challenge and are proud to introduce the technical preview of File Certificate support in the 10.1 release of the RES ONE Workspace Management Portal. And this is how it looks:

File certificate whitelisting, can save a lot of time and manual effort because the rules are still valid even when, for example, the hash of a file changes because of updates. This release contains a technical preview of file certificate support. The goal is to get feedback on this brand-new feature and incorporate this into our upcoming releases where we are going to productize file certificate support. Because it is a technical preview:

  • You can only enable file certificate security on an Exception (based on workspace containers) and not on global level
  • You cannot configure access control on file certificate rules yet
  • The log tab is not available yet
  • You cannot configure Security event notifications yet

A New Dashboard for the Landing Page

Now that you’ve seen how the Management Portal simplifies application security management, there is one more thing we should discuss : the dashboard. This dashboard (Home), which is the new landing page in the Management Portal 10.1 release, delivers at-a-glance visibility across your workspaces, tracking four key metrics:

  • The total number of active user sessions
  • The total number of errors in Event Log in the last 24 hrs.
  • The total number of remaining licenses
  • The last five audit entries

We’ll share more details about the dashboard in an upcoming blog article. Of course, you can reach out to me or my colleague Pete Downing to give us your feedback and ideas on how we can continue to improve and enhance the dashboard in RES ONE Workspace.

Summary and Special Thanks

Hopefully this blog gives you a quick glance on how the 10.1 release of the RES ONE Workspace Management Portal is making the life of the IT security administrator easier. Be on the lookout for  upcoming (video) blogs which will provide more insights on:

  • A dashboard that increases visibility across your workspaces
  • A redesign of Application Security, which will make the configuration and maintenance of the application whitelisting and blacklisting in RES ONE Workspace much easier
  • The availability of a RESTful API, which gives you the power of automating your workspaces
  • A technical preview of file certificate support, which will simplify whitelist management in your workspaces dramatically.

We encourage you to upgrade your current version of the Management Portal, or install and start using the 10.1 release and give us feedback. Your feedback is valuable to us as we use it as inputs into our designs for upcoming releases.  We build the Management Portal for our customers who work with it daily.

As always, thanks to all the team members who helped create this release, the community and the customers who provided a lot of good suggestions and spent time to provide us with feedback (keep them coming!) Feel free to add comments below, reach out to the RES Product Managers or provide new ideas to the RES Success Center.