By Jon Griffin Posted April 2, 2018
It is still a little amazing to think about how prevalent Macs® have become in IT organizations. In just a few short years, Macs went from being the new laptop that users loved and IT frowned upon, to being a mainstay device found in organizations everywhere. And, that trend is only growing. The dominance that Microsoft® Windows® based machines used to have over the entire business world is long gone. Today, IT admins need to be able to control and manage their Mac users and systems just as well as their Windows users and systems (Linux® too). But what is the best way to ensure this control? The answer is simple: enterprise Mac endpoint management in the cloud.
There’s a new centralized identity management solution emerging called JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service® (DaaS), and this platform is giving admins the enterprise Mac endpoint management in the cloud that they have been looking for and more. But before we look at this new solution, let’s look closer at the reasons a cloud-based Mac management solution is even needed.
Macs Were Left Behind
When you step back and take a look at how the market evolved, you can see why Macs were largely shut out of enterprises early on. Microsoft Windows systems quickly became dominant because of their open nature to developers and their large application base. They were easy to work with, and had plenty of tools for users very early on. But, that wasn’t the only reason it was preferred by IT admins.
Microsoft made a brilliant move when it created management tools surrounding the Windows ecosystem. These tools made it easier for IT organizations to keep control over their network, and as a result, they became a favorite of IT admins. The main tools in this space were Microsoft Active Directory®, and SCCM (System Center Configuration Manager). Active Directory was used to manage user access to Windows systems and applications (and even the network with the domain controller). Then, SCCM (formerly known as SMS) would manage the systems and infrastructure. Combined, these tools provided complete management over the IT environment, provided that your organization was entirely on-prem and Microsoft.
Mac systems didn’t have it so easy. There were no associated IT management tools for Mac like AD for Windows, and as a result, they needed to be managed a different way. That was difficult for IT admins, so in many organizations they decided to disallow Macs in their company, or they would decide to just leave the system unmanaged. Hardly an ideal choice.
Mac Systems Persist
While this enterprise lock-out Microsoft tried with Mac systems lasted for a long while, it couldn’t last forever. End users prefer Mac systems, with 3 out of 4 employees choosing Mac over Windows. And, with BYOD policies emerging, the amount of Macs entering the workforce has grown. Fast forward to today, and Macs have become a very significant part of just about every network. That’s not even mentioning the inroads that Linux has made with server infrastructure. Microsoft’s on-prem Windows-only management tools were not built for these other systems, and as a result IT admins are facing immense challenges with the evolving IT world.
The good news is that a next-generation IT management solution is emerging, and it is cross-platform and focused on giving IT organizations the control that they need over their entire IT infrastructure.
Enterprise Mac Endpoint Management in the Cloud
This innovative new solution is called JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service, and it is not only enterprise Mac endpoint management in the cloud, but it is a cloud identity management platform as well. As a cloud directory, DaaS is taking the ease and control that Active Directory offers for Windows, and reimagining it for the modern heterogeneous cloud era. This means that regardless of the platform, provider, protocol, or location, admins have full control from one centralized web console. And, with varying integrations, an open-source PowerShell module, and Commands/Policies capabilities, IT organizations can automate more of their onboarding/offboarding and other management tasks in JumpCloud than ever before.
Come see JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service for yourself by signing up for a free account or attending a live demo. Both routes offer great opportunity for increased learning, and can help you better understand how the cloud-based directory will work in your environment. Make sure you contact us if you have any questions or need help. Simple enterprise Mac endpoint management in the cloud is no longer just a dream. Take advantage of the future of directory services, and get JumpCloud today.