Many of our customers use System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) to manage end-user devices and servers running Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. We have also helped several clients implement a full Enterprise Mobility Suite solution (incorporating SCCM, Microsoft Intune, Azure AD Premium and Azure Information Protection), allowing them to remotely manage corporate and personal mobile devices and provide mobile workers with access to company resources whilst preventing data loss. None of this would be possible without the cloud-first features provided by the latest current branch releases of System Center Configuration Manager.
The latest 1606 version of SCCM provides a wealth of new functionality, particularly around the areas of mobile device management (when used in conjunction with Microsoft Intune), security (via Windows Hello) and user experience. As well as providing support for the management and deployment of Windows 10 Anniversary Edition (version 1607), this release includes the following headline features:
- Windows Information Protection (formerly EDP): Allows you to create and deploy information protection policies, including the ability to choose your protected apps and define your EDP-protection level.
- Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection: Enables the ability to onboard and offboard Windows 10 clients to the cloud service and view agent health in the monitoring dashboard (requires a Windows Defender ATP tenant in Azure).
- Windows Store for Business Integration: Allows you to manage and deploy applications purchased through the Windows Store for Business portal for both online and offline licensed apps.
- Software Update Point Switching: You can now enable the option for Configuration Manager clients to switch to a new software update point when there are issues with the active software update point. Once enabled, the clients will look for another software update point during the next scan cycle.
Microsoft are already hard at work on the next major SCCM update which is likely to incorporate many improvements to Software Center (including customisable branding of dialog boxes), enhancements to Asset Intelligence and the ability to identify the MAC addresses of USB network dongles used during operating system deployment (ensuring that SCCM does not treat machines built using these dongles as “known” devices).
Please feel free to contact us at CoreAzure if you have any queries about upgrading your SCCM solution or if you would like more information about how Microsoft technologies can assist you in managing, configuring and securing your corporate devices.