Microsoft Intune Review

Great patching for Windows, but not for MacOS

What is our primary use case?

We use Microsoft Intune for application deployment and for some of their security policies and end-devices policies. We also use it for patching. Patches for Windows 10 devices and MacOs, we're still figuring out what to do because we don't have many options on Intune for Mac operating systems. Patching and looking for OS deployment as well. Operating system deployment.

Within our organization, there are roughly 150 users, using this solution.

We use Microsoft Intune on a daily basis. What Microsoft does, is it releases patches every month. The device hash reports to Microsoft Azure Intune. If you want it to receive patches or policies, which you have created on Intune and you have deployed, then the device will receive the policies and patches only if it's online and connected to the internet. Whenever the device is online and connected to the internet, it's connected to Intune. You don't have to worry about having an additional agent or anything on your devices.

What is most valuable?

Patching for Windows in operating systems is great. Most organizations are going remote now due to this pandemic, so patching is one of the most feasible solutions we can think of — patching end-user devices. Application deployment and keeping the devices secure no matter where they are, by having this cloud solution — that has been great. Deploying the security policies to the devices. 

What needs improvement?

There needs to be more support for Mac operating systems. Support for patching, because we have very few, or minimal options from Intune for patching Mac operating system.

In the next release, I would like to see better compatibility for Mac operating systems — that would be really helpful. Also, if the support for Mac was as flexible as it is for Windows, that would be really appreciated.

For how long have I used the solution?

Personally, I have been using this solution for the past 13 months.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I haven't experienced any issues relating to stability.

How are customer service and technical support?

We have spoken to the technical support on a few occasions. They have only ever provided us with minimal information. 

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We used to use a SCCM or System Center Configuration Manager tool; it was also provided by Microsoft, but it's an off-prem tool. You need an on-prem setup and a server operating system and everything. On that server operating system, you can install this tool and start using it. We also used another tool called Automox, which was a patching tool. It's only meant for patching devices, different operating systems, Linux operating system, Windows, Mac operating system; however, it didn't have support for mobile devices.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is a very simple process. You don't have to do anything on on-prem. Since it's a solution from Azure, it's a software service. You just have to buy the subscription. You just need to have the license in place and then you can just start using it. There is not much setup involved. If you want to integrate your Azure solution with your on-prem solutions, then you have to do a bit of integration.

If you're going with standalone Intune, you don't have to think of setting up anything. You can just use it, pay for whatever your problems are, find a solution for that, and start using it — that's all. You don't have to worry about the setup for standalone Intune.

What about the implementation team?

All maintenance is handled by the vendor.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

Licensing depends on how you are providing support to your enterprise, whether it's device-based or user-based. If you're providing device-based support, you need to buy a device pertaining license. If you're providing support for users, then you have to go with user licenses. If are integrating Intune with FSCM, which is an on-prem tool, then the same scenario comes in either devices or users.

If you are providing support only for devices, like device-based policies, with Intune, there's a type of policy that allows you to deploy to either the devices or users. If you're looking for a solution where only devices can receive it, rather than users, in that case, you need to purchase only one license for Intune — I'm talking about integrating Intune with FSCM. You only need to purchase one license. Since you have already purchased FSCM on-prem, Microsoft has that flexibility; you can extend those licenses with the devices as well when you're integrating the devices with Intune. I don't know about the pricing, but I know about the licenses.

What other advice do I have?

I would absolutely recommend Microsoft Intune. Currently, I would definitely recommend any cloud solution. Most organizations were actually using on-prem solutions for managing their enterprise devices. Now, since everything is remote, people are confused. How can they manage their devices the same as they were before this pandemic? If they find Intune very pricey, they can go with another cloud solution. Intune it's very user-friendly. You just have a screen and console and you can just go in and start deploying anything. All you need are the user guides, which are fully-available with Intune.

Intune is a very good cloud solution for managing devices. They could actually make it better by putting everything together, in one place, like other MDM solutions are doing. If you compare Intune with VMware, VMware also has an MDM solution called AirWatch. Intune should compare itself with other MDM solutions and try to bring up those features as well. For right now, I would just say it's a very good solution for managing remote devices.

On a scale from one to ten, I would give this solution a rating of six.

If public cloud, private cloud, or hybrid cloud, which cloud provider do you use?

Microsoft Azure
**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Partner
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