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Try HOT for handling help desk woes

Nov 19, 20032 mins
Enterprise ApplicationsLinuxOpen Source

* Hot Open Tickets

Next in our series on open source help desk software packages is a package called HOT.

HOT stands for Hot Open Tickets – yes, it’s a redundant acronym, but think of it in the spirit of GNU, which stands for GNU is Not Unix. HOT was developed by programmers at Seminole Community College in Sanford, Fla., as a tool for the schools IT help desk. The software package is based on XHTML, PHP and a MySQL database on the back end. The software can run on a standards-based Web server, such as Apache, and is server platform independent.

Based on PHP and Javascript, the HOT Interface is a series of dynamic Web pages with pull-down menus. Standard configuration includes various Manager modules, which allow sys admins to do such tasks as setting up users in the account, input IT issues, and view outstanding issues and resolve tasks.

The interface was built using Cascading Style Sheets, which allows the look at feel of the Web interface to be tailored to a specific organization. Editing settings files allows users to change the information that is presented in the Web forms and pull-down menus. A standard issue input Web page would include pull-down and input boxes for entering such data as the nature of the issue (such as “broken web link” or “PC crash” or “server down”), how long it took to resolve, who handled it, the issues priority, etc. 

From this data, administrators can run reports, which are generated as Web page views. These views can show how the IS help desk is performing in terms of responsiveness, or reveal trends in the nature of IT issues in an enterprise.