Essential Mac management tools

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Macs vs. PCs

Managing a fleet of Macs in a predominately Windows-centric enterprise requires third-party tools that can deliver a variety of features, such as the ability to run Windows apps on Mac hardware, synch with Active Directory and Microsoft System Center, deliver software updates and generally give IT the same degree of visibility and control over Macs that they’re accustomed to in the Windows world.

RELATED: Macs vs. PCs

Macs vs. PCs

Product: Casper Suite

Company: JAMF Software

Location: Minneapolis, Minn.

The Casper Suite allows admins to manage Mac OS X client inventory, imaging, patch management, software distribution, remote control, setting and security management, license management and usage management.

Macs vs. PCs

Product: Parallels Management Suite for Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager

Company: Parallels

Headquarters: Seattle, Wash.

Parallels is a leader in the world of desktop virtualization, basically allowing Mac users to run Windows apps. Now, the company is offering a product that allows IT managers to scan their networks for Mac devices and manage those devices through a System Center plug-in.

Macs vs. PCs

Product: MokaFive Suite

Company: MokaFive

Headquarters: Redwood City, Calif.

MokaFive is a pioneer in client-side desktop virtualization. MokaFive creates desktop images that can be loaded onto Macs, PCs or bare metal. Features include the ability to run full Windows desktops on Mac hardware, to run Mac and Windows apps simultaneously, in addition to management features like mass deployment, zero-touch user provisioning and patch and image updates.

Macs vs. PCs

Product: OPUS Suite

Company: Orchard Parc

Headquarters: Toronto, Canada

OPUS is a virtual appliance that provides "plug and play" integration for Mac computers with enterprise class IT infrastructure from VMware. It can be delivered as a service leveraging cloud infrastructure vendors such as Amazon, or hosted on-site.

Macs vs. PCs

Product: Centrify DirectControl for Mac

Company: Centrify

Headquarters: Sunnyvale, Calif.

Centrify DirectControl enables Active Directory-based authentication and access control for Macs. It lets IT managers secure and configure Macs through Windows Group Policy. And end users gain single sign-on to their Macs through their Active Directory account.

Macs vs. PCs

Product: ActivEcho

Company: Group Logic

Headquarters: Arlington, Va.

GroupLogic has several products, all focused on helping IT departments integrate Macs into Windows environments, with an emphasis on file transfer, file sharing and network-attached storage. Products include ActivEcho, ExtremeZ-IP, MassTransit and ArchiveConnect.