We're introducing a simple feature that ensures hostnames and identity labels (the name of the identity in the dashboard) stay in sync with one another. The feature is implemented in a way that is meant to make it effortless to maintain. This feature has now been enabled for all customers.
Why are we making this change?
In the past, when the hostname of the machine itself changed, the label for the roaming client in the Umbrella dashboard did not update. This was a big issue for long-term management so we've taken some steps to make the sync happen. The rest of this article outlines how the process actually works for existing customers and new customers.
As an existing customer, this feature will be enabled for your organization and cannot be disabled in your dashboard-- it's a backend process on our side. For new customers, this feature will simply be on from the time you start using Umbrella.
This feature works for both standalone roaming client installs and the integrated module for AnyConnect, and works for all operating systems.
New roaming client installations:
All new roaming client installs will now have 3 properties, and when an RC is first installed these will all be the same:
- Identity Name: the name of the identity as it is in the Umbrella dashboard; this can be changed by an admin.
- Hostname: the current hostname of the endpoint computer; this is supplied by the roaming client installed on the endpoint and updated regularly.
- Original Hostname: the hostname at the time the roaming client was first installed.
The roaming client's Hostname property, if changed at the endpoint, will sync so the Identity Name to be the same as the Hostname. The only exception to this is if the administrator changes the Identity Name manually; a custom Identity Name will stay the same if the hostname changes.
Existing roaming client installations:
For existing roaming client installations, there are three scenarios:
- The Hostname and Identity Name are the same. No action takes place here.
- The Hostname has changed since the original installation. The Identity Name will now be automatically refreshed with the Hostname property to be the same.
- The Identity Name has been manually changed (renamed) since the original installation. The Hostname property will be updated for this RC, but the Identity Name will not change.
If you have changed an identity name and need to re-sync it to the hostname, you can literally just change it back yourself, but we've added a button to make it easier-- just click on the rename icon (the pen icon) and you’ll see the 'Match Hostname' option in blue:
NOTE: The changes to the hostname don't take place immediately. When the computer's true hostname is changed, it can anywhere between a few hours to up to 24 hours to refresh in the dashboard. This is because the sync update is a background process that runs through our install base and does so slowly to ensure consistency.