ACT for Configuration Manager

Those Configuration Manager teams in Redmond must be incredibly busy and well managed.  They have two product developments going on (ConfigMgr 2007 R3 and ConfigMgr v.Next) as well as producing add-ons for existing products.

The latest is the Application Compatibility Toolkit for Configuration Manager as blogged about by Jeff Wettlaufer.  The concept is simple enough; using ConfigMgr you can audit your existing desktops to see which applications you have.  You can use this information to assess Windows 7 compatibility.  It will also do the same for device drivers.  This reads like MAP for Windows 7 taking on the power and scalability of ConfigMgr.  MAP would be fine in a single office.  ConfigMgr takes this to the WAN.

That’s another bow to the string for Windows 7 deployment in the Enterprise.

Configuration Manager V.Next TAP Starts

Microsoft has started the Technology Adopter Program nomination process for the next major release (not 2007 R3) of Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr, SCCM).  That means a CTP or beta cannot be far off.

We got a brief look at ConfigMgr V.Next at TechEd in Berlin.  Wow, what a leap this product is making.  It just seems more elegant.  ConfigMgr is a huge product and can seem very daunting.  But once you get over the core basics you soon realise which bits are important and which aren’t to your organisation.  But few get over that hump from what I can see – around these parts – which is rather unfortunate because I just love how powerful ConfgMgr is.

The really cool part of V.Next was the self service model.  Driven by a Silverlight portal, a user could request a package installation.  A workflow decides where to start a install now or send an approval request to a budget owner (or admin or security).  When the package is approved the site triggers the agent to install immediately – no waiting around for 1 hour.

I really hope I get time to play with ConfigMgr later this year.  As a former MVP in that expertise, I’ve fallen out of the loop.  I no longer work with the product because it’s not useful in our field.  But I’m sure I will work with it again in the future.

Technorati Tags: