This week AppSense is going to be at Microsoft Management Summit 2012 (MMS) talking with customers and partners about what we do.
By now you’ll have seen our exciting announcement on DataNow. We’re going to be talking about that all week; showing customers how it works and how they can access their own corporate data on any device without locking in or attempting to mandate all your data is in one place like others in market.
We will also be showing how we add value to Citrix XenDesktop and covering all the great areas of value that we add to the Citrix/Microsoft stack like I blogged about recently where we think it’s possible to increase density by 10% or more.
With MMS being a System Center centric event it makes sense to also talk about what we are going to be doing with System Center 2012. We already integrate with System Center Configuration Manager 2007 and System Center Operations Manager 2007 today, though for the SC 2012 release it gave us the opportunity to step back and understand where we can do more. So being transparent, here’s the plan:
System Center Configuration Manager 2012 (ConfigMgr)
Today our integration extends to being able to support any application that ConfigMgr can deploy today – whether that’s natively installed (that is: it’s actually installed), a virtual package like App-V or published via Citrix XenApp or RD Session Host. We can also deploy our agents out using it. However the challenge with the older 2007 version was that it couldn’t support versioning of packages very well so this limited its use for deploying out our agent configurations. This meant customers still needed to use our management infrastructure in order to support these configuration items.
In ConfigMgr 2012 this changes. We still of course retain our transparent application support, though we can now use the new package versioning capability to deploy agents and configuration. The good news for customers using ConfigMgr 2012 is that it eliminates the requirement to use the AppSense management server and importantly reduces the client footprint with one less agent required. This simplifies customer infrastructure to centralize around the great deployment and reporting capabilities of ConfigMgr.
System Center Operations Manager (OpsMgr)
We already have a solid management pack that delivers client and server operational reporting and service control. There are a couple of areas that we need to do for OpsMgr 2012 compatibility though the changes to support are pretty minor. There are no planned major changes here as our support is already as extensive as we need to be.
System Center Service Manager and System Center Orchestrator (SCSM and SCOrch)
This is the new exciting area of System Center innovation. The ability to connect up enterprise service desk frameworks and couple them with powerful orchestration capabilities is an area we wanted to pursue.
AppSense has had the ability to deliver granular rollback of application and desktop settings for a long period of time based on the information we gather during personalization operations between Windows platforms. In our recent versions we added the ability to utilize a Powershell interface to call these actions in a way that could be integrated into service desk products.
At MMS 2012 we are going to be showing a prototype of this capability that we intend to deliver shortly. Essentially we utilize SCSM and its ability to manage service desk operations and couple that with SC Orchestrator to call our Powershell interface to provide the user with the ability to create a trouble ticket, select the application that they are either having difficulty with (or made an inadvertent change in) and rollback the settings to yesterday’s settings. Conceivably because we have a series of settings in our backend database we could actually provide the user with the ability to rollback to various points in time, though the prototype we are showing does not yet have this capability.
That’s the power of having a backend service and database managing the user settings! What this delivers is a lower cost of managing the user and providing them with responsive automation that puts them in control. From the IT side of things it has the potential to significantly reduce “user error” related support calls and of course costs.
So if you want to see this all in action, come by the AppSense stand at MMS. We will shortly be making a couple of videos to demonstrate the integration so everyone can see!
Director of Business Development