LogMeIn Central: Remote Control and Monitoring from One Console

LogMeIn has long been one of the top remote control applications for managing and monitoring computers when you’re away from them. Now, LogMeIn is beta testing a new web-based application — centered around a management console — that allows people who oversee numerous computers to monitor and manage them from anywhere: LogMeIn Central. The console has charting and reporting features, as shown in the screenshot below. I’ve been trying LogMeIn Central out; here are my impressions.

To sign into LogMeIn Central, you just need an existing LogMeIn account, which you can create quickly if you don’t have one. Upon release, the service will be subscription-based. Fees don’t appear to be set yet, but you can try it through a free trial. The software that you download and install to enable LogMeIn Central is new, and called LogMeIn Pro2. It’s a combination of the previous LogMeIn IT Reach (for computer management) and LogMeIn Pro (for access) products.

As with previous versions, I was initially asked if the computer I logged in from was the one I wanted to make remotely controllable. After I confirmed that it was, I found options for adding other computers to my console, such as “Work Laptop,” in line with LogMeIn Central’s target audience of people in small- and medium-sized businesses who may oversee quite a few computers.

The LogMeIn Central console has a tabbed interface, shown below. You can view users of computers that you’re monitoring and managing, pull up charts with information about them, set alerts (for if, say, a computer shuts down), and more. Among other features, there are configurable alerts for monitoring system processes when you want to head off a possible upcoming incident, and remote deployment of host software to new machines that you want to manage. You can find a video on other new features here.

Overall, LogMeIn Central is intuitive to use, and if you’ve used LogMeIn before, you’ll find it familiar. LogMeIn Central will definitely be most useful to those who manage quite a few computers. I personally don’t monitor and manage enough computers for it to be a tool that I’ll use, but anyone who has oversight of several distributed systems should find it quite useful.

What tools do you use for remotely administering computers?