Deploying remote monitoring and management (RMM) software can feel like an overwhelming task, but with proper planning and execution, your Atera implementation can go smoothly. In this guide, we’ll walk through the entire deployment process from start to finish and provide best practices to help you get the most value out of your Atera investment.
Preparing Your Environment
The first step is assessing if your infrastructure is ready for an Atera deployment. Here are a few things to check:
Hardware Requirements – Ensure all endpoints meet Atera’s system requirements. Older machines may need to be upgraded before installing the agent.
Software Updates – Run Windows Update and third-party patch management to bring endpoints fully up to date. This prevents agent install failures due to outdated software.
Antivirus Exclusion – Add Atera to your antivirus exclusion list to avoid network traffic blocking or quarantining the agent. Consult your AV vendor’s documentation.
Organizational Structure – Plan your Atera customer, site, group, and computer structure to align with your organization. Consider IT hierarchy, geographic location, or other logical groupings.
User Permissions – Review Atera’s privilege requirements and assign appropriate levels to user accounts. Consider a dedicated Atera admin account.
Taking time on preparation helps avoid issues down the road. Always test in a lab or sandbox environment before rolling out to production users.
Rolling Out the Agent
Once prepared, it’s time to deploy the Atera agent. There are a few common deployment methods:
Push Installation – For Windows endpoints, use Atera’s installation package and push functionality. Identify computer groups, assign the package, and wait for agents to install.
Silent Installation – For Windows or third-party endpoints, use Atera’s silent installer (.msi) and your existing software deployment tools. Configure installation parameters for a smooth, hands-free rollout.
Remote Installation – For any operating system, install the agent directly from Atera’s web console onto one computer at a time. Useful for testing or fragile systems.
Scripted Installation – Develop a script that calls the installation package or silent installer for automated mass deployment. Popular options include PSADT, SCCM, PDQ, etc.
Go slowly at first to catch any issues early. Deploy to a small pilot group before campus-wide rollout. Monitor installation logs for success or errors.
Configuring the Agent
Once installed, there are a few post-installation configuration steps:
Asset Identification – Atera will automatically detect properties like IP address, OS, etc. but you can provide additional custom fields like department or user.
Agent Settings – Review Atera’s agent settings like installation directory, firewall control, update frequency. Make any needed adjustments for your environment.
Policy Management – Assign default patch management, AV, and remote control policies. Fine-tune these further as you gain familiarity with Atera’s capabilities.
Initial Tasks – Consider pushing initial tasks like software/Windows updates, scans, or backup creation to establish a baseline. Schedule regular maintenance.
Troubleshooting – Monitor agent status and address any non-communicating systems. Test remote control and other features to validate successful deployment.
Pay close attention during initial rollout to spot gaps and optimize your configuration before widespread launch.
Training Users and Staff
A successful deployment also involves adoption training for key stakeholders:
End Users – Provide documentation on what Atera monitoring means for them and how to contact IT if issues arise. Enhance productivity through remote assistance.
Help Desk – Train help desk technicians on common Atera features like tickets, remote control, asset management views. Optimize support workflows.
IT Staff – Provide in-depth demos of Atera’s full capabilities for patch management, security, backups and beyond. Conference training is ideal.
Management – Communicate reporting and dashboard features to demonstrate ROI and compliance. Highlight proactive security and uptime benefits over reactive model.
Vendors – Notify third parties like antivirus, backup, or software vendors on new tool integration. Streamline partner management through Atera integrations.
Conduct follow-up refreshers as needed. Training investment pays off through faster support and reduced trouble tickets over time.
Measuring Success and Getting Executive Buy-In
To justify continued Atera usage and gain budget for additional modules, share deployment success metrics:
- Number of endpoints/devices monitored
- Uptime improvement percentages
- Patch compliance rates vs. historical averages
- Help desk ticket volume reductions
- Productivity gains through remote support
Highlight case studies of issues resolved through Atera that previously required on-site visits. Illustrate cost avoidance alongside qualitative benefits.
For ongoing executive buy-in, continue reporting metrics quarterly alongside renewal timelines. Demonstrate continuous value through proactive security, optimized spending, and ensured compliance. Consider knowledge articles or dashboards for at-a-glance visibility of Atera’s contributions.
With thorough planning, focused execution, and ongoing measurement – your Atera deployment can run like a well-oiled machine.
Q: What factors should I consider when choosing an installation method?
A: Key factors are environment size, connectivity, and control. Push/remote work best for many endpoints, scripts are great for heterogeneous environments, and one-off remote installs work for test cases. Consider your specific needs and start with the simplest options.
Q: How can I prevent installation errors?
A: Thoroughly test prerequisites, use clean images/VMs to install, watch for outdated software/drivers, use exclusion lists to bypass AV/firewalls, start with a small pilot group, monitor logs carefully and adjust as needed. Prevention is easier than troubleshooting issues later.
Q: Can Atera monitor non-Windows endpoints?
A: Yes, Atera supports Linux, Mac, AWS instances and other environments via third-party integrations and remote commands from the web console. However, for full monitoring features you need to deploy Atera’s native Linux/Mac agents available through the online portal.
Q: How long should my deployment project take?
A: Timelines can vary greatly by infrastructure size and complexity, but as a guideline, expect 1-2 months for environments under 1000 endpoints if planned and executed properly. This allows for testing, piloting and training. For larger deployments, add a week or more per 1000 additional endpoints.
Q: What are some best practices for post-deployment care?
A: Review logs regularly for issues, keep applications and systems fully patched, refine configurations based on usage patterns over time, conduct regular training refreshers, share successes openly, celebrate milestones to promote adoption, and routinely report metrics to stakeholders. Proactive care keeps your Atera investment running optimally.
I hope this comprehensive guide on Atera deployment best practices helps you achieve a smooth rollout. Let me know if you have any other questions!