Configuration Manager gets a well awaited refresh, and it’s huge

***Jarrod Vassallo, Solution Architect, TD***

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Many of our clients have had a long history around the right (and sometimes quirky) way to manage Windows in their environment. The product that we also use internally at Thomas Duryea (TD) to deploy, patch & manage our Windows Operating Systems, ConfigMgr 2007, is getting a refresh and is due out the week commencing the 16th of April.


ConfigMgr 2012 (officially known as Microsoft System Centre Configuration Manager 2012) is a massive change for IT Professionals & Administrators giving them and their users (if they wish) more control around what, and when, applications should be deployed to their workstation. Don’t get me wrong, ConfigMgr 2007 is a great product however the proprietary backend (leftover from its predecessor SMS 2003 and 2.0) and huge infrastructure requirements often saw IT administrators scratching their heads asking themselves;  well.. why?


It’s been over 4 years now since we have seen an update to ConfigMgr. In the last two years we have seen what was happening in the development stages – V.Next became the current ConfigMgr 2012 Release Candidate 2 and…  we are really liking what we are seeing.


For IT professionals the new console to manage Windows workstations is based on .Net Framework and is a welcomed change that allows you to manage the workstation environment more effectively. We are glad to see SQL replication take over the backend in replicating important data to Secondary Sites with the built-in Replication Link Analyzer able to tell us instantly if there is an issue and how to fix to it.


Sure, these mentions may be a little too “techy” for some  IT managers but we feel some of the front line Administrator enhancements are just the tip of the iceberg for ConfigMgr 2012. The modernised backend infrastructure, the self-service application portal, the auto approval & deployment of security updates, the integration of Forefront Endpoint Protection, the reduced requirement for heavy infrastructure at remote sites and integration with the rest of the System Center 2012 suite really sets this product apart from its predecessor & competitors. Besides all of this, wouldn’t you expect a Microsoft product to manage Microsoft Operating Systems to be better anyway?


Additional roles and enhancements for 2012 include:
• Vastly improved user experience by providing the option to self-provision applications securely from an easy-to-use web catalog.
• An improved administration console enables you to organise administrative tasks by business role, ensuring that only relevant features are visible to any given role.
• Manages a wide range of mobile devices with a single administrative console for policies, asset management, and compliance reporting.
• Provides continuous settings enforcement to automatically identify and remediate noncompliant machines

We are extremely excited about the release of ConfigMgr 2012. We can feel the excitement from our engineers, the online system center community around the world and of course our clients who have a long history in partnering with TD to get great results out of a product we work with day in and day out.


For most of our clients you know we are a heavily focused technical company so we just can’t wait to start delivering this product after the final cut is released in April. Until then we are lucky enough to be holding sessions at Microsoft on ConfigMgr 2012. Please do come along and share the excitement with us. You can find info on such events [here](


Jarrod Vassallo is a Solution Architect with Thomas Duryea.
View our ConfigMgr Solutions page [here](


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