In the next few months, I will be setting up Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager to be used within our environments. SCCM is a management console that can be used for domain administration. This covers everything from security and permissions to pushing out program installs and updates. Instead of having to touch 40 different computers to install software, we will be able to click a button and have the program install with little user input on all machines.
SCCM also comes with Microsoft Forefront Endpoint Protection, which will be a simple, yet effective, antivirus solution for us moving on. It runs very lightweight on the users’ machines (not using large amounts of system resources), and is user-friendly with virus notifications. This will not only make our users and their data more secure, but will also give us an advantage with maintaining what is accessing the machines.
Another feature that we’re excited about is the ability to manage mobile devices through the SCCM program. This gives administrators full control over the devices to ensure that they are all imaged the same and are properly secured. An example of this would be enforcing a passcode to access the device. If a mobile device is connected to the domain, a passcode must be created to access the phone; otherwise, the phone will not be allowed to communicate with the domain. Along with this security feature, if the phone were ever to be lost or stolen, we can access the console and do a full remote wipe of the phone. If it doesn’t have data access at the time of scheduling the remote wipe, the phone will be wiped as soon as it has data.
The features of this program are very exciting, because it gives us the ability to be many places at once without having to go anywhere. As the company grows, this will become more and more beneficial so as to not stretch our support too thin. It’s essentially a way of saying “the sky’s the limit” because it presents a great amount of options that we can offer when we setup domains in the future.