What is System Management?

By Natalie Bluhm Posted November 21, 2019

system management defined

System management is managing control over the systems in an IT environment. These can include Windows, Mac, and Linux desktops, laptops, or servers. Effective system management means IT knows what is taking place on all of the systems in their environment, and they have the ability to enforce company policies regarding how employees can use their system. This could be something like enforcing a certain screensaver on all systems or forcing employees to update their operating system without the option to select “Install Later.”

Why does this matter? Well, first let’s take a look at how system management has evolved over the last two decades.

It has really been Microsoft System Management

Managing Devices

Around 1986, the personal computer (PC) started to be viewed as a productivity tool (eHow). At the same time, Microsoft released the Windows Operating System, and began its path towards the dominating force it is today. As the Microsoft ecosystem grew in popularity, Microsoft created a directory service called Active Directory® (AD). AD introduced a feature that allowed IT admins to remotely and securely manage their Windows systems called Group Policy Objects (GPOs).

GPOs made it possible for IT admins to control each of the Windows endpoints in their environment from Active Directory. In the past, IT would have had to physically go to each computer and manually run whatever tasks they needed to. The introduction of GPOs was a pretty big deal. The trick was GPOs worked like a dream only as long as IT environments stayed within the Microsoft ecosystem. Microsoft wanted to hold onto their monopoly, so they made it challenging to connect AD and its GPO function to anything outside this ecosystem. This worked out well, until the mid 2000’s.

IT admins began to witness more Mac and Linux systems infiltrating their workspace, the cloud changed the way users could use apps, networks, and storage systems, and employees started working remotely. Because AD doesn’t play well with Mac and Linux systems, IT admins were not able to have the (Read more...)

*** This is a Security Bloggers Network syndicated blog from Blog – JumpCloud authored by Natalie Bluhm. Read the original post at: https://jumpcloud.com/blog/what-is-system-management/

Natalie Bluhm

Natalie is a writer for JumpCloud, an Identity and Access Management solution designed for the cloud era. Natalie graduated with a degree in professional and technical writing, and she loves learning about cloud infrastructure, identity security, and IT protocols.

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