By Jon Griffin Posted April 13, 2018
There’s no doubt that Mac® laptops and desktops are incredibly popular today. Considering where they were 20+ years ago, they’ve made quite a significant jump. Regardless of where they came from, we now know that Macs are a core part of an IT organization’s network infrastructure everywhere. This change wasn’t without a fight, however. Microsoft® wasn’t fond of the emergence of a competitor, and they have been doing everything in their power to slow it. What this means for IT admins is that they have to deal with the challenges Microsoft sets up to discourage Mac use. But no matter what Microsoft does, the end users preference eventually wins out, and that is what we are seeing today.
The big challenge that IT admins are encountering today is handling the management of Macs. Fortunately, a next-generation hosted Mac management solution is helping make it easier than ever to control and manage Mac users and systems. Before we get into the new solution, however, let’s examine why it is needed in the first place.
Historic Solutions to Mac Challenges
Traditionally, Macs have either been left unmanaged or siloed outside of the core directory. This wasn’t because IT didn’t want to manage them or centralize them, but rather because the IT management tools hadn’t been as integrated or easy to obtain. These methods of management, or lack of management, are far from ideal, and IT admins know it. But, they haven’t had much of a choice. Historically, each platform has had its own IT management tools. For example, Microsoft Windows® has had Active Directory® and SCCM, and Apple® has had tools like Open Directory and Mac-centric management tools.
IT organizations don’t want to purchase multiple tools to manage their infrastructure. They could easily end up having four or five solutions to keep the environment together if they are leveraging Windows, Mac, and Linux® systems. Add in web applications, cloud infrastructure, file servers and storage, WiFi networks, and much more, and the number of tools starts to increase quickly. The more solutions in place, the more work, complexity, and security risks there are for an IT organization. While this situation has been a tough necessity in recent years, it no longer has to be the case.
Solving Challenges With Hosted Mac Management
The good news is that there is a next generation IT management tool that is not only integrating user and system management, but also cutting across all of the major platforms in the enterprise. This tool is a cloud-based directory that goes by the name of JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®. As a cloud directory, the platform is able to act as a hosted Mac management solution, but it also could be considered a hosted Windows management solution and hosted Linux management solution. Due to its support of all three systems, admins no longer need to worry about having multiple solutions for multiple platforms. It’s a cloud directory service that integrates system management at its core.
Think of the platform as a reimagination of Active Directory for the cloud era. With cross-platform management and GPO-like functions for all three major platforms as well, the cloud-based directory is redefining the directory space. IT organizations no longer need to run the infrastructure of the solution either. Simply leverage the tools that are needed, and all of the maintenance, management, availability, and security is handled by the Directory-as-a-Service provider. Sound like something you might be interested in? Then check out the hosted Mac management platform for yourself. You can get a free JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service account here, with access to 10 free users and the entirety of the solution. Alternatively, you can always contact us here with questions, or attend one of our weekly demos on the platform.