Jamf vs. FileWave

Written by Natalie Bluhm on March 5, 2019

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One landmark in the IT landscape that has seen significant growth over the last two decades is the use of Mac® systems in the workplace. Since the leading user and system management platform (Active Directory®) has continued to solely focus on Windows® systems, many IT organizations are looking for a solution to help manage their growing macOS® fleet. As IT admins research existing endpoint management solutions, many are comparing Jamf vs FileWave. So, what do you need to know about these two system management tools?

A Look at Jamf vs. FileWave

FileWave was started in 1992 and Jamf emerged in 2002, and these two endpoint management firms have been challenging each other for a number of years. While Jamf MDM has made its mark on Apple® device management, Filewave has taken a more cross-platform approach. Both solutions seem to be widely adopted and liked by their respective customer bases.

When it comes to deciding which solution would work best in your IT environment, a good place to start is thinking about which solution is capable of meeting your core requirements. If you’re environment is 100% Apple, Jamf could be the way to go. If you leverage a mix of platforms, FileWave might be the better option. Another comparison worth looking into — especially with heterogeneous environments — is Jamf vs. Intune.

However, if your environment is anything like other modern workplaces, gaining control over systems is just part of what you need help with.

Solving for More Than Mac System Management


More than likely, you are also trying to solve new user management needs that were introduced not only with Mac systems, but also with the web-based applications, remote servers, new options for file storage, and wireless networks that have sprung up over the years.

Traditional user management providers haven’t adapted to these new resources either, so many IT admins have wrestled with securely connecting users to the IT resources they need. After all, being able to control whether a user has admin rights on a work device, or any IT resource for that matter, is just as important as ensuring full disk encryption is enabled or the system screen locks after a certain amount of time.

Essentially, no longer is it good enough to just manage the system, but rather the user and the system need to be controlled. When the number one threat from a security perspective is identity compromises, system management can’t just stop at the endpoint. User management is just as crucial.  

The good news is that there is a Mac user management platform that not only securely connects users to their Mac systems, but also their Windows and Linux® systems, web and on-prem applications, cloud and on-prem servers, virtual and physical file servers, and wired and WiFi networks. It’s called JumpCloud® Directory-as-a-Service®.  

User and System Management with JumpCloud

JumpCloud is a cloud-based directory service that leverages a vendor-independent, location-agnostic approach. Hence, IT admins are empowered with centralized control over all of the digital tools their users have access to. With password complexity management, multi-factor authentication, and SSH key management, sysadmins can rest assured their users are securely authenticating to their resources, too.

Lastly, JumpCloud offers deep system management for all major platforms—Mac, Linux, and Windows. IT professionals are able to dictate system behavior using policies, remotely execute commands and scripts, log system events via our Events API, and so much more.

Now you have to ask yourself, is it just a system management problem you’re trying to solve, or do you actually need an identity provider that provides user and endpoint management?

Next Steps

If you’ve decided JumpCloud might be the solution you have in mind for Mac user and system management after reading about Jamf vs Filewave, register for a demo to see the platform in action. You can also take our cloud Mac management solution for a test drive yourself by signing up for a free account. It even comes with ten users free forever. Of course, if you have questions that need answering, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. A product expert will gladly get back to you.

Natalie Bluhm

Natalie is a writer for JumpCloud, an Identity and Access Management solution designed for the cloud era. Natalie graduated with a degree in professional and technical writing, and she loves learning about cloud infrastructure, identity security, and IT protocols.

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