Automox Office Hours: The Top Questions of 2021

Every month at Automox, our customer success team answers your most pressing questions. They take on anything and everything IT operations and the Automox platform.

When we started the monthly meetup, we had no idea how well it would play out. But today, the initiative has become one of our most popular sessions. 

We call the forum our Office Hours Q&A, but it’s also known as “Ask an Automox Expert.” It’s an information-packed session you can rely upon to make the most of your Automox investment.

Held the first Thursday of every month, Office Hours is live and unscripted. We attempt to answer questions across a broad scope of topics during the hour. We may not be able to answer a question about the meaning of life (though we’re game to talk about that, too). Still, we can help you with:

  • The fastest ways to patch deployment and endpoint hardening

  • Best practices for endpoint management for better security outcomes

  • New ways to gain visibility and control across your remote or hybrid workforce

  • Tips and tricks to get the most out of the Automox platform

We received hundreds of questions throughout the year. Some were highly technical. Others involved best practice suggestions. And many were specific to a particular organization’s requirements. But some diamonds stood out as interesting on a broader scale. The following favorites apply to a wide range of environments.

We’ve compiled the most compelling questions asked during 2021, and we’d like to share them with you now. But first, a big thank you to the die-hard customers who joined us every month to ask these questions.

Office Hours Questions 2021: The Best of the Best

Does Automox offer configuration management in addition to patching? For example, can you set policies similar to a group policy for on-premises systems?

Yes, Automox can enforce similar configuration policies that exist in Group Policy to on-premises devices using Automox Worklets™. In addition, Automox has extensive configuration management capabilities. Whether Microsoft Windows, macOS, or Linux, Automox allows you to define and enforce configuration requirements for clients, servers, virtual machines, containers, and cloud instances. And Automox Worklets will enable you to automate and enforce any scriptable action on endpoints regardless of location or domain, from software deployment to implementing local configuration policies on an endpoint. If it can be scripted in PowerShell (Windows) or Bash (Linux and macOS), it can be automated across your corporate devices.

To what extent can Automox protect and secure my endpoints?

An Automox Worklet enables you to create, automate, and enforce custom tasks across any managed Windows, macOS, and Linux system. The Worklet Catalog includes pre-built content you can configure quickly to secure your endpoints. Examples include Worklets to help you:

  • Enable Windows Firewall

  • Set file permissions

  • Force password reset

  • Disable location services

  • Disable USB storage

  • Disable root account login

  • Zero-day vulnerability remediation

This list goes on. Check out the Worklet Catalog from your Automox Console or the Automox Community to learn more.

With moving so much to the cloud, most services use UTC time. Thus, most of our cloud servers are set to UTC. Have you run into this same issue? If so, how has that affected your policy creation for the time offset?

Automox has a flexible method to schedule a Policy. Known as Global Synchronized Scheduling, you can schedule a Policy to run at either the local time of the user or via UTC time. This enables you to perform a synchronized update across multiple devices.

What are the benefits of pairing CrowdStrike with Automox?

Automox empowers you to act on any vulnerability discovered within the CrowdStrike Spotlight module to proactively eliminate exposure before those vulnerabilities can be weaponized. Also, you can use automation to deploy the Automox agent through the CrowdStrike sensor agent easily.

Can we use the Automox platform to upgrade or patch proprietary software(s)?

Sure can! Automox uses Worklets to customize installation using PowerShell for Windows devices, and Bash for Mac, and Linux. You can upload any proprietary files needed during the upgrade and call them within your own custom-built script. The Worklet will continuously evaluate and upgrade the software as required.

What features are in development? When can we expect to see their release?

The Automox Product Portal is your resource for features and enhancements. You can see what’s been released and a list of all current requests. You can also submit an idea for an enhancement and vote on existing requests.

How to deploy software installs using Worklets?

Installation of a software package depends on how a customer deploys the software. This can vary between organizations and their device types. In a Worklet, the remediation code section contains installation instructions for the particular software. In addition, a “Required Software Policy” can be used to deploy software. It allows you to define the package name and version, upload the installation file, and enter the PowerShell script to install the software.

Do we need our own physical infrastructure, i.e., network and shared servers?

Automox is based on a true cloud-native architecture, not a legacy tool that has been retrofitted and rebranded for the cloud. Automox is easily deployed without any physical infrastructure, and no VPNs are needed.

How much memory/process intrusiveness is the agent on the system?

The Automox agent has a lightweight footprint and low CPU overhead that varies somewhat depending on supported operating systems:

Microsoft Windows

  • Memory utilization - 10 MB

  • Disk space requirements - 20 MB

  • CPU requirements - <1%

macOS

  • Memory utilization - 10 MB

  • Disk space requirements - 16 MB

  • CPU requirements - <1%

Linux

  • Memory utilization - 10 MB

  • Disk space requirements - 5-10 MB

  • CPU requirements - <1%

What features does Automox offer compared to other competitors regarding security?

Automox offers extensive security measures to protect your environment. Our cloud-native architecture is clustered to ensure high availability and reliability. All private data exchanged with Automox takes place over encrypted channels. And Automox is SOC 2 Compliant (Service Organization Control, a benchmark achievement for cloud service providers that establishes credibility for their cybersecurity hygiene). For a list of Automox security compliance documents and status reports, please visit security.automox.com.

What are some of the best ways to follow CIS compliance using Automox?

An Automox Worklet enables you to create, automate, and enforce custom tasks across any managed Windows, macOS, and Linux system. Automox also publishes the Worklet Catalog with pre-built Worklets to help enforce compliance benchmarks. We include Worklets to enforce password complexity and rotation, disable remote management, kill open processes, disable remote login, disable file sharing, etc. Be sure to read our Solution Brief, “Automox for Security Controls and Compliance Benchmarks.”

Depending on what CIS guidelines you're trying to follow, Worklets tend to be the best options for helping to enforce compliance.

We have users that refuse to change their device passwords because they use one for everything. Can we force password changes and formats?

Yes. Included in the Automox Worklet Catalog is a pre-built Worklet you can download to enforce password complexity and rotation.

Have a question about Automox that you would like to ask? Be sure to join us on the first Thursday of every month, learn more about Automox, and get a few tips from our experts. You can register for Automox Office Hours on our Webinar page.

  • Where can I find a list of all Automox live webinars?

  • Does Automox have configuration management tools?

  • How can I automate cybersecurity compliance?

Automox for Easy IT Operations

Automox is the cloud-native IT operations platform for modern organizations. It makes it easy to keep every endpoint automatically configured, patched, and secured – anywhere in the world. With the push of a button, IT admins can fix critical vulnerabilities faster, slash cost and complexity, and win back hours in their day. 

Demo Automox and join thousands of companies transforming IT operations into a strategic business driver.

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