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Time Accounting Introduction

SupportWindow has the unique ability to allow operators to create a system that can meter support time as it is dispensed by customer. To enable this capability, you must also run the SupportWindow CGI application and database on a web server that both the Console and Internet Hosts, can reach. Complete setup details for CGI setup will be made available along with the CGI application itself. 

This system can be used in different ways. To provide support assistance for a fee to Internet users who have paid for such in advance through the SupportWindow Host's built in purchase function, or to known customers whom you bill directly. 

Case Study 1:
A software developer {Acme Software Developers} want to provide both free and paid support directly to their user's desktop with zero up front cost to the developer. Acme includes a custom copy of the SupportWindow Host along with their software to everyone who purchases their software. The SupportWindow Host is installed by default with their software, and Acme has incurred no cost other than the minimal original cost of a custom host from Bytewiser Data Systems, Inc.. Later when a customer needs support on a particular workstation installation of the Acme Software during Acme's free support period that they provide for their customers, they call Acme and the support desk person has them launch the SupportWindow Host and since it's a custom pre configured host, the customer does not even have to enter the IP address. When the connection is made Acme will provide either a fixed or subscription license for the connection and provide remote assistance right to the desktop. After the free support period has expired the customer wishes to purchase 3 hours of support time from Acme for users in all of their offices. Acme bills for 3 hours and enters 180 minutes into the database for this customer's sitecode.  Now as users from this customer request support, Acme can provide support always knowing how many minutes are still available to this customer automatically.

Case Study 2:
Let's say you have a customer that needs remote IT support in various offices. First you have them download the SupportWindow Host onto each computer in their organization. This costs you nothing. You sell them an hour of support time for whatever cost you decide. At the console, you can enter that hour in minutes to any connected SupportWindow Host or Service that has been properly configured with a site code for that customer(you can also set site codes from the Console). As support sessions are opened to any SupportWindow Host or Service belonging to that customer the minutes available are displayed and the session minutes are displayed. The SupportWindow Console uses the minimum session time that you have configured and when a session has lasted for one minute, that minimum session time is decremented from the database minutes belonging to that customer. After the minimum session time has been decremented, continuing minutes are decremented each minute as they occur.  This allows greatly streamlined time accounting for your customers as support is purchased and invoiced in blocks and parsed throughout the organization in minutes. 

Case Study 3:
A small accounting software support company called ReadyBooks Support wishes to provide support services to remote users of ReadyBooks that they don't know. They offer these services on their website but do not wish to be burdened with invoicing and setting up accounts for these users. Also, these are emergency services and the users need help now. They run SupportWindow Console and have a custom SupportWindow Host available for download on their website. A customer needing support assistance with ReadyBooks can download the custom SupportWindow Host, connect to the ReadyBooks Support SupportWindow Console and purchase time with their credit card through the built in PayPal online payment connection. The support time purchased is automatically returned and entered into the ReadyBooks Support CGI database normally within seconds. The ReadyBooks Console operator can now open a support session with this customer already knowing they have been paid. The minutes are used and decremented according to the minimum session policies setup on the console. Remaining minutes after the session are available should this customer reconnect at a later time.