kidziti and everyone else,
I had a telephone chat with the head of North America Sales for Retrospect "Inc." this morning (his time), in which I suggested just that. My suggestion, which he seems to like, is to simply actively market the Web-based Management Console in its no-extra-cost view-only form. You can get a brief view of the Retrospect 16.1 version of this facility in the first of these four interconnected videos. You can skip the second video (unless you want to learn how to sign up for the Management Console), and view the third video to see how to integrate the Management Console with a running Engine.
The fourth video, which is designed for "Partners" (consulting organizations) shows additional two-way features available with the Add-On—which is US$49 for the Desktop Edition. The Retrospect 16.5 Add-On version of the Management Console moves the list of "backup servers" to a column on the left-hand side of the Dashboard window. Its Granular Remote Management also adds Activities and Sources and Backup Sets panels that the administrator can drill down to, as well as Scripts Management displays and the ability—for individual "backup servers"—to create and edit scripts and create destinations.
Here's a 43-minute webinar that demonstrates the Retrospect Windows 16.5 version of Granular Remote Management—designed like the Retrospect Mac GUI. At minute 27 the head of Retrospect Tech Support recommends leaving Retrospect running all the time—using the Management Console. At minute 29 he says that they're moving towards having Retrospect run as a service with an HTML-based GUI. Is server column in non-Add-On Web Dashboard too?
As the first video itself states, the Dashboard in the Management Console is basically an enhanced version of the non-Web-based Dashboard that kidziti and other Retrospect Windows administrators have a love/hate relationship with. That non-Web-based Dashboard is a poorly-implemented feature of Retrospect Windows. It was implemented in Retrospect Windows 8 because a Retrospect-Mac-like Console proved to be impossible, but had glaring bugs that weren't supposedly fixed until 4 years later in Retrospect Windows 12.5. See this 2017 Forums post by me, which quotes the applicable 188.8.131.52 Release Notes but also quotes a reply from Retrospect Tech Support. Also read the remainder of that thread.