If you’re are reading this post I assume that you know what Spiceworks is, but just in case you don’t, I’ll explain briefly.
Spiceworks is a 100% free IT management software that bundles tons of features for daily IT management, such as: Helpdesk, knowledge base, inventory management, vendor management, purchasing and much more (can’t beat that price tag).

Now, for those of you already know me and my activity on Spiceworks Community it is clear that I’m IT executive who is also a Spiceworks fan.
But as much as I like Spiceworks and its features, I’m not so enthusiastic about their text editor and the text editing capabilities.

It is ok for simple, plain, responses and documentation, but for complex editing it is simply not enough.
Some users may say that the editor is enough, because commenting or replying to a ticket can also be made by email, which resolves the problem.
I claim that this is not true for all cases.

Personally I open a ticket for every time-consuming activity, such as handling a service request, performing scheduled maintenance, or working on a project.
Meetings that I attend as part of a project require documentation (minutes), scheduled maintenance and other tasks requires documentation as well.
Ideally such documentation should be included within the corresponding ticket, but the standard Spiceworks editor is simply not good enough for that.

This is where Evernote, which is another great service that I like, kicks in.
Evernote is a also free (paid versions available) service that allows me to take notes wherever I am, and on any device (PC, Laptop, Mobile).
The notes sync automatically across all me devices, so there are available for me whenever, wherever I need them.

Evernote editor is much more advanced than the one built into Spiceworks application, so it is possible to take meeting notes, document tasks done in a rich powerful WYSIWYG editor.
In addition, each note has a unique sharing URL, so by attaching that url to any ticket in Spiceworks it is possible to get best of two worlds in one place: track activity done, relate it to a customer, client, project or service request, all while enjoying a better editor.

From this point forward I’m going to assume that you what Evernote is, if you don’t, read more about it here.

Enough with the theory. Time to get the details of how to get this done, and it is really a very simple integration to set up.

Creating custom attribute

In spiceworks create a custom attribute called “External Note Url”.
Basically you can call it anyway you want, but i suggest to use the name suggested above.

To create the custom attribute open a browser and go to
http://<your-spiceworks-server>/settings/helpdesk/customize-attributes

Scroll to the bottom of the page, click “add”, enter the field name, make sure the type is set to text, and that “Ticket” is selected as “applied to”.
Click save.

Check the image to the right for additional info.

Create your note in Evernote

Now, using evernote desktop (or mobile app) create your note.
Feel free to format the text in anyway you like.

Once you’ve done editing, right click on the note preview pane (or click on the “Note” menu) and select Copy note link.

The note link will be copied to the clipboard.

Paste the note URL in Spiceworks app

Open Spiceworks web app and navigate to the relevant ticket.
Click on the details tab, and find the “External Note URL” custom field.
Paste the note URL you copied at the previous step.

Note that it may seem that only part of the url has been copied, this is ok as the URL is longer than the field will display at first.
Once you hit the Enter button you should see the full URL.

Quickly access the saved note

To access the saved note at later time, either select the url,
and click “open in a new tab”, or copy and paste it into your browser.
It is that simple.

Side by side: Spiceworks inline editor and Evernote editor. Click on each image to enlarge.

Spiceworks inline editor

Evernote editor

Better collaboration with team members

As I wrote earlier, Evenote integration provides not only better editor, but better collaboration as well.

In addition, Evernote sharing capabilities allows to share the note with team members (or even end-users, or collaborators that don’t have an account in your system), so everyone can work together on the same note.

This is very useful when tracking meeting minutes, maintenance or project tasks for example.

Evernote version tracking capabilities allows you to see exactly who made changes to the note, what was the change,  and when was it made.

All you have to do is to enter the note sharing window, and invite collaborators using email invites.

Note that the people you invite can use a free Evernote account, but you, as the note owner, need to have a paid account.

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To summarize,
Spiceworks + Evernote works better together. You get the powerful capabilities of Spiceworks helpdesk application combined with Evernote advanced editor,
and better collaboration options.
I hope you’ll find this method as useful as I do, and that it will help you to provide better service, and to better document your activities.

Legal note: The links in this post are affiliate links to the respected publisher / owner site.
If you choose to buy or subscribe to a paid service from them after clicking on a link, I share some revenue.

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