Virtual Device Management

Written by Jon Griffin on November 15, 2017

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The device management space has changed dramatically. It used to be dominated by solutions that specialized in managing Microsoft Windows machines, but today’s heterogeneous environments must accommodate a variety of operating systems – especially macOS and Linux. The conventional, Windows-centric device management solutions no longer excel. Add to that the desire to have IT management tools from the cloud, and a virtual device management solution starts to make a lot of sense.

The Microsoft Version of IT

Microsoft had it figured out and it didn't include Virtual Device Management

Microsoft Windows used to dominate the device infrastructure. Windows systems and applications were a virtual monopoly in organizations. In fact, back in 2000 Microsoft owned 97 percent of the device market share (Forbes). Even with this level of domination over the enterprise, Microsoft still wanted to strengthen their grasp on the market. So they set out to build a core set of IT management tools that could enable IT organizations to govern all of their Microsoft infrastructure. Microsoft came out with Microsoft Active Directory® and SCCM, and these tools helped IT admins control user management and device management respectively. These became major pieces in the way IT organizations operated, and essentially became Microsoft’s way to secure their spot in the enterprise market for the coming years.

The Modern Version of IT

Modern IT needs Virtual Device Management

Fast forward to today, and IT infrastructure looks dramatically different. Only one in five devices is now Windows (Forbes). Macbooks, iMacs, and Linux servers are extremely popular. This change has been detrimental for Active Directory’s functionality, as it was designed to function solely with Microsoft based platforms. To help fill this gap, a new generation of IT systems and device management tools have been flooding the market.

Another important change in the market is the desire for IT organizations to leverage “as-a-service” solutions. SaaS based solutions end up saving IT organizations time and money. They also enable their IT admins to focus on the core things that matter to their organization.

As a result of these changes, an opportunity has emerged for a virtual device management platform. Called Directory-as-a-Service®, this modern incarnation of Active Directory and OpenLDAP™ is changing the way that IT admins control their users and devices. As a cloud hosted directory service, this cloud identity management platform securely manages and connects user identities to the IT resources they need, including systems, applications, data, and networks.

To be specific, Directory-as-a-Service has the ability to tightly manage Windows, Mac, and Linux machines. IT admins can set policies such as screen saver lock and disabling USB ports, and they can create free form commands and scripts to execute any task on any device. IT admins can leverage any language that the machine supports, and there is full audit logging of the task execution and its success or failure. Essentially, this cloud based directory gives you complete control over all of the systems in your environment.

Virtual Device Management in Your Organization

Virtual device management eliminates the need for IT admins to have multiple IT management tools on-prem, and gives IT organizations deeper control over their infrastructure. If you would like to learn more about how virtual device management can work in your organization, watch the video above or drop us a note. We would be happy to answer any questions you have, and explain the inner workings of the cloud-based directory more thoroughly. Alternatively, you can also sign up for a free account of the Directory-as-a-Service platform. That way, you can test it out as much as you need to see exactly how it will work in your setup. Plus, your first 10 users are free forever, with no credit card required, so there’s no reason not to give it a shot! Sign up today!

Jon Griffin

Jon Griffin works as a writer for JumpCloud, an organization focused on bringing centralized IT to the modern organization. He graduated with a degree in Professional and Technical Writing from the University of Colorado Colorado Springs, and is an avid learner of new technology from cloud-based innovations to VR and more.

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