Overall Satisfaction with Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager
We use SCCM for a number of different use cases including imaging, OS and software deployments, inventory and desktop management. Its primary function is to push new software to the fleet. The benefit is being able to time when and what gets deployed and make it done in an automated fashion. We also use it to manage to patch existing software packages (in conjunction with a product called Ninite).
- You are able to create queries to identify almost any combination of computers needed.
- Its direct tie to active directory.
- It fully leverages Windows functionality.
- Its mac integrations, though improving, are really not much more than inventory.
- It could benefit from an enterprise remote control solution more similar to Bomgar or LogMeIn.
- Its web interface for reporting is very dated.
- We are able to support hundreds of computers per FTE more than if we did not have an automation tool.
- ZENworks Configuration Management (f.k.a. Novell ZENworks Configuration Mgmt.)
We were a ZENworks shop previously. With our strong tie to Novell that made sense, but as we left Netware and its enterprise directory it made sense to leave Zenworks. At the time, I would have said that ZENworks was a more mature tool and I haven't kept up with their feature offering. But in the 8 years SCCM has really matured and become an incredible offering. There is a reason they are the market leader.
It is ok. The Microsoft interface is somewhat clumsy and feels old. It involves a lot of clicks and it feels like it takes a while to get to where you want to be. The tool does a lot and so there is a lot of clutter on the screen. If you are fully entrenched in the Microsoft ecosystem, this is not a big deal at all.
The integration of the tool into Active Directory and the accompanying domain is easy and is one of the strengths of the tool.
It is an enterprise. You have to have some level of scale to make this product feasible. It isn't just something you throw into the environment to make your life easier. When you are managing thousands of computers, the equation changes and it is incredibly valuable. It is complex and if not done correctly, it potentially can cause a lot of damage, so make sure you fully understand what you are doing before you press the button.