CA Client Automation Review

We can automatically deploy a package to the entire company but package creation is tricky


What is most valuable?

Everything is automated. 

We do software delivery through our package. We create some software packages on CA, and then we create groups in the tool. We can then deploy that package instead of installing the software manually into each computer. We can just push it out to the entire corporation if we want to. But in some cases, not everyone uses the software, so we just select a group of computers, or a department, and we push out the software to that group.

It is also really easy to use. You just schedule a job and create a package of software, and everything just works. The tool was already in place when I started at my workplace and as I learned to use it I was amazed that everything could be done with a few clicks.

How has it helped my organization?

It has saved us a lot of time. We can create a job and schedule the job, and then just leave it while we go ahead and do other stuff.

What needs improvement?

I think it would be good for them to contact the bigger software vendors, like Adobe and Microsoft, to come up with a support team. So if we were rolling out a software to the company but didn't know how to create a package for it we could turn to CA for assistance. They might say, "We work with Adobe, and we have a package created already. If you want to customize it, maybe we can help you with that." That would be a good feature.

Or even if they just made the package creation a little bit easier, because you have to deal with code and it gets tricky.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

I was involved in the initial setup for the upgrade that we did a couple of months ago. We were using version 12.1 and we migrated to version 14.1. It was pretty straightforward. We received support from the engineers from CA, so it was an easy and smooth transition.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

The scalability is good because CA's IT Client Manager has Enterprise Manager, which is like a big server. Below that there is a domain manager and below the domain manager there are scalability servers. If we want to add something, we can easily do so just by adding another scalability server, because we already have the structure. If the company is growing, we just add another scalability server on the other site, connect it to the Enterprise Manager, and we are done.

How is customer service and technical support?

Technical support is good, when they get back to you. 

I usually have to use Google, though. Not because they don't help, but because sometimes we have to meet deadlines and don't have the time to wait for them to get back to us. Sometimes they do respond to us quickly, but at other times we need support right away and we don't have that. I think this is an area that they need to improve. They should offer higher priority support to their bigger customers.

What other advice do I have?

One of the biggest things that I look for when selecting a vendor is that their solution is scalable, that you can grow with it. Because sometimes, everything changes really quickly.

Another thing that I look for is integration, because we use other tools, like ticketing systems. Right now we are using CA and it is integrated with ServiceNow, so I think integration is a big piece of it.

If a colleague of mine was considering CA Client Manager I would tell them to contact CA, let them know what they need exactly, and have CA do a demo for them. A demo will reproduce the environment so that they can see how the solution really works.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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