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Parallels has announced Parallels Management, a plug-in for Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) that lets enterprises extend System Center capabilities to efficiently and cost-effectively manage the growing number of Macs on their network.
Parallels Management extends System Center to become a universal and complete cross-platform solution for managing both Macs and PCs, as well as virtual machines running on Macs. This new software adds to the growing list of cross-platform solutions Parallels offers that are paving the way for Macs in business environments -- including Parallels Desktop for Mac Enterprise Edition.
This first component of the Parallels Management Suite enables CIOs and IT administrators to solve the problem of full Mac management, letting enterprises leverage the existing infrastructure and extend it to Macs without costly build out, as well as giving them the power to gain complete control of the Macs on their network.
"IT departments are experiencing the growing reality of Macs across their networks. In response to demands of CIOs and IT managers who need better control and more cost-effective answers, we delivered a complete and seamless solution that leverages existing IT investments in infrastructure, resources and talent," says Birger Steen, CEO of Parallels. "As the industry experts and innovators in making Windows and Mac work well together, we are delighted with the industry response."
As Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Choose Your Own Device (CYOD) grow from a bleeding-edge trend to becoming a mainstream reality, the number of Apple devices showing up in enterprises is growing, yet the management and tools for securing those devices are lagging behind. A Parallels survey, at www.appleintheworkplace.com, of more than 500 IT and knowledge workers revealed that less than 30 percent of workers get automatic software updates distributed to their Macs, and that more than 42 percent of large companies have no system or tools in place for Mac security and management – exposing potential security risks.
"Parallels solutions allow IT organizations to build stronger partnerships with business units that require varied IT resources and support in order to increase productivity," according to Rob Young, IDC Research Manager, Client Device and IT Service Management Software."Parallels proven cross-platform capabilities make its new Parallels Management Suite for Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager a promising solution for CIOs and IT managers who need to control their Macs and want to leverage their existing infrastructure management software."
According to a January 2012 Forrester blog by analyst Frank Gillett entitled "Apple Infiltrates the Enterprise: 1/5 of Global Info Workers Use Apple Products For Work!," in early 2012, 21 percent of information workers used Apple devices at work, and almost half of all enterprises were issuing Macs to at least some employees – numbers that are only expected to grow in 2013.
Further underscoring the need for the Parallels Management plug-in as a viable and necessary solution, a January 2013 Forrester report1 on the latest version of Microsoft System Center concludes, "[System Center] does not yet manage hosted virtual desktops or Macs effectively," and, "In a heterogeneous, virtualized world firms should look to best-of-breed tools for non-Windows or virtualized clients." (Product Spotlight: Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager 2012, Forrester Research, Inc., January 2013)
"Employees bringing Macs to work or choosing them at work, while great for them, presents real challenges for IT departments as they are faced with supporting a platform that System Center cannot effectively handle on its own. I’ve seen this time and time again throughout my career -- previously in my IT leadership roles at Yahoo! and Access Systems Inc., and even now at Parallels," says Parallels Chief Information Officer Christopher McLaughlin-Brooks. "The option of building out Mac-only management is far too expensive; ideally IT leaders need centralized processes, tools, and a single team that can manage everything easily. The Parallels Management solution solves that problem."
With Parallels Management, CIOs and IT administrators can:
° Manage and control Macs by leveraging their existing Microsoft SCCM infrastructure, resources and talent;
° Gain full visibility into the Macs coming onto their networks, both those they know about and those they don’t;
° Gain control and take action on those devices the same as they would with PCs – all while working within the same environment they are accustomed to;
° Easily leverage Mac technologies to have complete security on their Macs;
° Leverage Parallels Desktop for Mac Enterprise Edition to deploy and manage policy-compliant Windows stack to Macs, which is key for employees who need Windows OS on their desktops and laptops to run mission-critical Windows-only applications.
At the upcoming MacIT Conference, Parallels will demonstrate its full suite of Mac enterprise solutions and will host an interactive session on BYOD and what IT departments need to do to gain control of Macs. MacIT is an event co-located with Macworld, and is held in the Moscone Center in San Francisco from Jan. 31 through Feb. 2.
Parallels launched the Apple-in-the-Workplace Barometer, a crowd-sourced project for gauging where companies stand in terms of BYOD Mac adoption and support. Discover where your company ranks and gain access to a host of resources for learning about and implementing Macs in the enterprise by taking the survey at www.appleintheworkplace.com.
Availability, pricing, details and screen shots
Parallels Management – Mac for Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager is available for $30 per Mac per year, with volume discounts available, beginning Jan. 31, 2013, in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, with French, German and Japanese versions to follow.