By George Lattimore Posted August 10, 2018
With so much activity flowing through the IT market today, many IT organizations are searching for innovative ways to handle the changing landscape around them. One area of deep interest that has emerged recently is the identity management capability: Mac® user management. Let’s explore why this area has become a hot topic, and some of the challenges it faces going forward.
Growing Need for Mac User Management
As Mac systems infiltrate the organization at large, IT admins have been struggling with how to manage users and the systems themselves. In a 2016 study (JAMF), three out of four employees were found to choose Mac over Windows®. As a result, this issue remains present because existing identity and access management solutions struggle with Mac user and system management.
In fact, the most common IAM system, Microsoft® Active Directory® (MAD or AD), has largely focused on on-prem Windows platforms and applications which, of course, makes a great deal of sense from Microsoft’s perspective. The challenge is that IT networks are no longer homogenous, but rather mixed platform, provider, and location, and Microsoft is reluctant to make way. Employees are leveraging new and innovative platforms from Mac and Linux® systems to AWS® cloud server infrastructure to SaaS applications, such as Slack, GitHub, G Suite™, Office 365™, and more.
The struggle for IT organizations is, of course, how do they connect users to all of these disparate IT resources. Traditionally, that was accomplished by MAD, but with the shift to the cloud and non-Windows platforms, IT admins are seeking new identity management capabilities. Is it practical to continue to employ MAD while leveraging non-windows platforms and various IT resources from the cloud? Probably not.
Empowering Identity Management
These new requirements have to certainly include the identity management capability, Mac user management. It’s totally reasonable that IT admins want to be able to remotely control user access to Macs with the ability to provision, de-provision, and modify user access. Further, IT admins want to be able to also control Windows and Linux machines from the same cloud identity management platform, ideally, with all three platforms viewed as equals.
Further, with the recent changes to macOS® in regards to Secure Token and FileVault® challenges in High Sierra®, IT admins also want to know that their identity provider is modern and adaptable enough to handle Apple’s constant changes to their solutions. As you probably know, Apple’s recent changes to macOS have disabled some ability for remote workers.
Leveraging JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®
Well, the good news is that a solution called JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service® is being leveraged by tens of thousands of organizations for Mac user and system management. It’s the platform of choice for Mac management because of features like Policies, where GPO-like capabilities empower cross-platform management for Mac, Linux, and of course, Windows. As a result, IT admins are free to focus on what matters most: control, security, and efficiently managing their IT environment.
If you’re interested in hearing more about how JumpCloud Directory-as-a-Service enables Mac user and system management for thousands of organizations around the globe, drop us a note. A product expert looks forward to answering any questions you might have, and further, can set you up with a personalized demo. Signing up for the platform is free, so go explore the features for yourself, and be sure to sign up 10 users, at no cost.