Georgia SoftWorks started out as a custom software development company specializing in data communications and telecommunications applications.
Back in the early 90's our developers had an in-house need for reliable telnet connectivity on Windows NT. Required was a modest set of features such as correctly displayed characters, proper function key operation and alt-key operation.
Telnet had been around on Unix but was not frequently utilized on Windows. The Telnet Servers we tried on Windows were inadequate for all but the most basic requirements. Reliable and consistent operation was questionable and there were no features of any real value for commercial environments. The available Telnet Servers for Windows would not work for us.
Our developers had been in the data communications and telecommunications business for years and realized we could develop a Telnet Server. At the time we really had no other choice. We knew developing a robust Telnet Server would require a significant effort but did not shy away from such a task.
Having a solid understanding of protocols, object oriented programming languages, assembly language and the Windows operating systems provided the requisite skills. The skills coupled with experience and a real NEED for a Telnet Server was a winning combination.
Current Windows development tools were used to develop the Telnet Server for Windows. Taking advantage of the facilities provided by Windows our chief engineer designed the telnet server to be reliable, robust, consistent, fast, and extensible. These are not just sales words to us, they have real meaning. Reliable in that it does what it is supposed to when it is supposed to, it is dependable, trustworthy. Robust in that it can handle difficult industrial situations, useful features, and resilient to failure. Consistent so that you know what to expect. It behaves the same way time after time. Fast in that performance is essential. Everything from how fast the characters are echoed to the memory and processor requirements for large numbers of sessions had to be taken into account.
Due to a forward thinking design, an architecture was designed where features are easily added, maintenance is minimal and performance spectacular. The foundation is named the Universal Terminal Server and designed such that different protocols could be installed as requirements determined. The first and default protocol was the Telnet protocol. Since the development was in-house we also developed a Telnet client and were able to include features never thought possible for Telnet such as mouse operation, file transfers and much more!
After successful in-house use, it was decided to turn the UTS (Telnet Server) into a commercial product. Immediately the reliability and consistent operation of the Telnet Server became the driving force to the products popularity. Features were continually added based on customer input and the GSW Telnet Server was fast becoming the most sought after Telnet Server on Windows.
One customer suggested that we automatically launch an application when a user connected and drop the user into the application. That was the beginning of Logon Scripts. Of course now we have Global, per user, per IP Address, Certificate Based (for SSH) Logon Scripts that can be launched upon connection. The telnet server also could control what happened to the user when the application exited. The user could either be left in Windows, at a command prompt or the connection could be closed. This facilitated a widely desired feature by many system administrator of restricting a user to a specific application, greatly reducing potential for unintended user error while allowing the user complete freedom within the application to perform their job.
Another key aspect was the ability to detect when a link or client device failed and take the proper action such as terminating the application and returning system resources. This was critical as it is a common flaw in all existing Telnet Servers for Windows that precluded their use in mission critical environments. When a link or device fails, orphaned processes are created that continue to consume resources, gradually slowing down the entire server and reducing available sessions.
When sessions were disconnected from the client, the idea was presented that with most applications you could save the session data and shut down the application by typing a sequence of characters. A simplistic example would be something like the keystrokes Alt-F, Alt-S, Alt-x would save and exit Windows Edit.
Recognizing the Telnet Server still has access to the suspended session, it was able to sequence characters to the application, gracefully shutting down the application. Since different applications require different sequences of characters, this needed to be user configurable. This became the Graceful Termination feature.
Additionally, since the telnet server has access to a suspended application, with some intelligence it could re-connect a client to a suspended session, allowing the user to continue work in progress, at the exact same point as when the failure occurred. This became the Session Saver feature.
By this time we had also added a server side feature, "Automatic Logon" that allows users to automatically log on based on IP address. This eliminated all User Name, Domain, and Password prompting, providing a faster and more secure method of connecting.
The Automatic Logon combined with Session Saver solved many real world problems (Especially with RF mobile devices) with respect to maintaining sessions and getting users back to work fast after a network failure. The response was incredible.
By this time word was out, and the GSW Telnet Server was being installed around the world, end users and resellers on every continent. Automobile factories, Airlines, Soft Drink Manufacturers, Pharmaceutical companies, practically every industry imaginable were all using the GSW Telnet Server.
Our chief engineer also added the capability of viewing the user screen from the administrators workstation, aiding in training and support. Again, this was out of a need to save time so the administrator could monitor the users devices and see everything they are seeing and does not have to run to the work floor each time there is a question.
It was not long before the idea to actually take control of the device from the administrative workstation became a reality - Shadowing. This not only allows an Administrator or another user (with proper privileges) to help another user but allows control to be taken of a suspended session so the work can be completed or the session shut down.
As the features continued to propel the Telnet Server, GSW enthusiastically committed resources responding to industry requirements with breakthrough technologies and truly unbelievable innovations in the world of Telnet. One of the most recent is Team Services, which provides Team Collaboration technology allowing users to share, transfer and swap devices while keeping their session, all performed from the device. Incredible, useful and never imagined.
The global requirements demanded Multilanguage support such as double-byte, traditional and Simplified Chinese support. The GSW Mobile Clients support Simplified Chinese Font GB!
As mentioned earlier the foundational base for the Telnet Server is the Universal Terminal Server, which also supports the SSH2 and FIPS 140-2 compliance products. The security aspects of the Telnet and SSH2 Server started in the early days when we had a 128 bit encryption available for Telnet (yes,-telnet) that required a United States Bureau of Exportation License Exception to export the GSW Client and Server. Georgia SoftWorks submitted all the requisite documentation to the government cryptographic engineers and obtained approval to export a strong encryption(at the time!).
That was just the start with security. Currently we offer the most advanced optional connection filtering available for the UTS (Telnet and SSH) all the way to SSO through NTLM over GSSAPI as well as Certificate Based Authentication, integrated with Microsoft Certificate Stores. x509v3-sign-rsa and x509v2-sign-dss public key authentication with certificate to user account mappings. Both 'One-to-one ' and 'Many-to-one' certificate mappings models are support.
Under a contract with the United States Military, GSW developed a FIPS 140-2 compliant SSH server AND client. This is now commercially available.GSW software runs on Aircraft carriers, at medical offices, bottling plants, grocery stores, food warehouses, guitar manufacturers, educational institutions, and so on.
The point being that GSW is proven in the field, year after year, customer after customer.
Since the beginning GSW has been committed to developing the best Telnet Server, and SSH2 Server on the market. Innovation based on user feedback as well as breakthroughs have been a pattern at Georgia SoftWorks. Many customers need custom development to satisfy their very targeted objectives. GSW is open to the plethora of ideas ranging from custom development to providing personalization packages to help secure your business and take Telnet/SSH to un-imaginable levels.
GSW is honored to have the opportunity to gain your trust and will work hard to meet and exceed your expectations.