August 9, 2022

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Comparing 8 desktop management software options for business

Comparing 8 desktop management software options for business


When corporations look at their options for managing users’ endpoints, it truly is crucial to pick desktop administration application by seeking into certain characteristics, integrations and licensing models.

The obstacle for many years has been running mobile products, desktops and connected application together with just one one more, due to the fact normally times they each and every demand independent instruments. Above the many years, these specialised tools developed into a a lot more common system known as unified endpoint administration (UEM).

UEM consists of various merchandise classes each and every with exceptional specialties.

  • Shopper administration applications (CMT) include things like desktop and notebook management on equally a unit and computer software stage.
  • Cellular system administration (MDM) requires system hardware administration.
  • Cell application management (MAM)  handles software administration.
  • Identification and accessibility management (IAM) includes authorization, authentication, password and solitary sign-on management.
  • Business mobility administration (EMM) includes all cellular management applications, but it does not manage desktop personal computers and laptops.

Security is not a distinctive group, but UEM includes it to some diploma in each individual providing — occasionally as an insert-on.

It can be perplexing, as distributors made the solutions separately before converging them into a solitary UEM solution. Nonetheless, some merchandise nonetheless record the higher than acronyms while describing particular person options. For example, MDM might be listed as a distinct product on a vendor’s web page, but it is bought as component of the UEM item the MDM section are not able to be split out. Even so, there are narrower goods that do tackle unique capabilities, this kind of as Microsoft’s Program Configuration Manager, which is a desktop management tool and not Microsoft’s absolutely-fledged UEM product or service.

Although UEM is a blend of current platforms in several techniques, there can be worth in using the extra specialised administration platforms — this sort of as MDM and IAM — for a additional focused method to every facet of conclude-person administration. Organizations may like a vital attribute from a person MDM vendor’s platform, but the desktop administration capabilities from a different.

For businesses focusing on what they require for desktop management, it truly is worthwhile to review the products in terms of their desktop management abilities. As these, this comparison of merchandise and characteristics focuses on desktop management and does not think about factors outside of that.

Top desktop management computer software vendors

Whilst companies such as Gartner will not often establish goods particularly as desktop administration software, we can use Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for UEM as a baseline to compile a record of practical solutions. IT directors should evaluate the desktop management abilities of each instrument based mostly on this starting stage.

This comparison explores offerings from Microsoft, VMware, IBM, ManageEngine, Citrix, BlackBerry, LogMeIn and Ivanti. These are all mature goods developed on desktop and cell goods for yrs ahead of consolidating into UEM. In addition, these solutions consist of the capability to control cell units and many present a cloud-based administration pane.

Desktop administration features to look for

Suppliers don’t all establish the exact functions in the very same way, and they generally differ greatly on what they include things like. Some vendors concentrate a whole lot on protection in a fundamental merchandise, and other folks individual safety into a different item. The aspect record below is a set of rather popular functions among the goods that are essential to IT administrators. Separating the features into these groups enables for a additional apples-to-apples comparison in between solutions.

Keep in thoughts that desktop administration, as described below, involves components — PCs and laptops — and software for person productivity and administration features. Cell gadgets are not provided.

  • Patch administration. Frequently provided in software administration, this specifies the feature of controlling and distributing patches and updates to shoppers.
  • Computer software and application management. This involves computer software deployment, characteristic and version administration for people and IT purposes.
  • Distant accessibility. This element holds a various significance to various vendors. It could be a distant desktop software for consumers, remote management of units, end users or other comparable capabilities.
  • Compliance policies and enforcement. When directors can produce compliance studies manually, these distributors precisely identify a function to supply compliance info.
  • Desktop product configuration and management. This is the main of desktop administration — hardware provisioning, software configuration and an quick-to-use interface. Ideally, these functions really should all be on a single pane of glass to manage customers, devices, program, updates and other capabilities.
  • Lively Listing (Advertisement) studies and interface. These techniques have an Active Directory connector to let the console to deal with Ad consumers, devices and teams. The methods pull these from the Ad domain, and in some circumstances it consists of reporting capabilities.
  • User admin. Some choices provide administration for buyers, groups and associated attributes. Advert connections may or may possibly not be bundled.
  • Asset administration and monitoring. Whilst all desktop administration merchandise provide machine controls as well, asset management is a certain perform to handle all IT property, normally with tracking and reporting capabilities.
  • Cloud capacity. These items offer you some degree of cloud ability. The management purpose may be in an app in the cloud, it might take care of apps and digital units in the cloud or execute other connected cloud-based mostly capabilities.
  • Ability management. This incorporates distant wake-up, power on and off and energy preserving administration functions.
  • OS assistance. This determines the functioning units that IT can put in the merchandise on. This may possibly or could not be the record of shopper OSes that can be managed.
  • Information management. Articles administration techniques are typically individual goods to handle files and data files, and produce reports. Nevertheless, some desktop administration systems incorporate content administration features.
  • Lifecycle administration. This entails handling computer software, programs and equipment from deployment via deactivation for responsibilities these kinds of as planning, tracking, deployment and monitoring. These items supply some stage of developed-in lifecycle management, but the diploma varies from products to merchandise.
  • Protection. Offerings ordinarily include some level of safety this sort of as antivirus or malware safety in addition to neighborhood stability. This may possibly be provided from a listing provider such as Active Listing, either crafted-in or via a husband or wife. Some products and solutions could call for an upgraded company level to include things like stability features.

Product attribute comparison

Desktop administration software program varies drastically, dependent on how sellers carry out and guidance options. Moreover, vendors may possibly supply three or extra product or service tiers that contain the supplemental characteristics above. Hence, it is important to assessment the element sets for every single product’s offerings to determine which one particular satisfies an organization’s requires.

desktop management software comparison chart

This comparison can assistance narrow down the checklist of products that an business need to assessment and strongly think about. Businesses likely have to have far more information when contemplating desktop administration program, so the ideal route is to talk right to the most promising vendors. Most will give a cost-free demo or evaluation license to assist businesses make your mind up.

Solution notes and pricing

There are some significant notes to know about just about every vendor, their featuring and their pricing. Some merchandise call for calling the vendor for comprehensive pricing info.

ManageEngine Central

ManageEngine is 1 of the core suppliers to provide a UEM merchandise and is consistently in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant experiences — however it really is at this time in the “area of interest” group. In addition to a sound set of cellular gadget equipment, this product or service capabilities hardware-impartial deployment, customized deployment templates and a quantity of increase-ons, which include the following:

  • Endpoint Stability
  • MDM
  • OS Deployment
  • Failover Server
  • Secure Gateway Server
  • Multi-Language Pack

ManageEngine utilizes a ‘call for quote’ pricing mechanism so organizations will have to communicate with a seller representative to get a perception of the pricing.

IBM MaaS360

A sound UEM product, IBM MaaS360 has some fascinating AI factors which include a policy suggestion motor and a voice-based AI administrative assistant. IBM selling prices its merchandise in four concentrations. Though the seller provides far more facts on its internet site, the pursuing pricing outline provides a good baseline:

  • Essentials: $4.00 for every system, for each month
  • Deluxe: $5.00 for each device, per month
  • Leading: $6.25 per machine, for each thirty day period
  • Organization: $9.00 for every system, per thirty day period

Microsoft Endpoint Manager — Microsoft Configuration Supervisor

IT administrators will know that Microsoft frequently has complex licensing, but these offerings are surely worth seeking into for some organizations. Their UEM merchandise, Microsoft Endpoint Supervisor (MEM), features Microsoft Managed Desktop as a cloud-centered IT management and protection monitoring assistance. For the needs of this post, we concentrate particularly on the desktop management abilities of Microsoft Configuration Supervisor — which is a component of MEM.

The pricing and licensing products are many with heaps of various paths that corporations have to  negotiate based on unique prerequisites. Microsoft does, on the other hand, offer a powerful roadmap for navigating all these disparate services.   

VMware Workspace A person

VMware Workspace One has some advanced options such as certification administration. The vendor delivers a extensive assortment of deployment and provisioning options which includes physical and digital devices. Its unit management choices offer you innovative, organization and mission-significant management ranges as an increase-on — one thing that competitors have not determined. Comparable to IBM, VMware characteristics an automated AI virtual assistant for consumer support. Pricing is centered on a regular foundation, for every user and for every machine. Workspace 1 Moreover, Normal, Innovative and Business Suites do not have community pricing information.

  • Personnel Essentials — for unmanaged products: $1.66 per unit, per thirty day period or $3 for each user, per thirty day period
  • Cellular Necessities — mobile only: $3 per system, for each month or $5.40 for each consumer, for every month
  • Desktop Essentials — desktop only: $4.00 per unit, per thirty day period or $7.20 per person, per month
  • UEM Essentials — desktop and mobile: $5.25 per gadget, per month or $9.45 for every consumer, for every thirty day period

Citrix Workspace

An additional experienced UEM products, Citrix Workspace, builds on Citrix’s foundation goods and features in depth digital application and virtual desktop help. Citrix is the only evaluated solution that specifies a Microsoft Business office 365 integration in addition to extensions to assist Home windows 7, 8.1, 10 and 11. Citrix Workspace delivers administration with out demanding brokers to be mounted.

Pricing is at four tiers.

  • Necessities: $2 per person, for each thirty day period
  • Typical: $7 per consumer, for every month
  • High quality: $18 per consumer, for every month
  • Quality Moreover: $25 for every user, for every thirty day period

BlackBerry UEM

BlackBerry is a key participant in the UEM industry and has been in Gartner’s report for numerous decades. BlackBerry UEM features a single-pane-of-glass UEM console for mobile, desktop, laptop and application administration, together with cloud options.

BlackBerry’s pricing is a carefully held key, with no pricing tables or characteristic lists on their internet site.


With a heritage of becoming a distant obtain merchandise, LogMeIn features a strong portfolio of remote accessibility and management and IT automation applying scripting for reporting and proactive alerts. LogMeIn functions computer software and unit administration in a solitary-pane-of-glass console and options guidance for kiosks and issue-of-sale gadgets.

Pricing is a minimal unique. This seller delivers a foundation prepare of $80 for every month with a bare minimum of 25 equipment and primary features which include the pursuing:

  • distant entry
  • consumer and machine administration
  • qualifications entry
  • file transfer
  • desktop sharing

Highly developed features are accessible in a few insert-ons.

  • Security: $47 for each thirty day period
  • Automation: $47 for each thirty day period
  • Perception: $47 for every month

Ivanti Neurons for UEM

This UEM providing from Ivanti permits IT to automate program and OS updates and deployments and offers a number of checking and troubleshooting capabilities that IT can use to handle UX challenges as they come up. The item supplies true-time session details on managed desktops, which can aid IT understand the root will cause of consumer challenges. Ivanti’s platform also supports distant obtain desktop sessions for end users to get the job done on their in-office environment desktop from remote locations. That same operate also allows IT directors to look into person concerns with a palms-on remote session.

Ivanti does not have general public pricing facts on Ivanti Neurons for UEM, though it features perpetual or subscription licensing.