I’m excited to announce that Parallels® Mac Management 7 for Microsoft® SCCM is now available. Based on customer feedback, Parallels is delivering new features and enhancements including Internet-based Mac® client management, non-OSD task sequences, and simplified macOS® imaging.
What’s in Parallels Mac Management 7?
The feedback from our 7 beta testers was fantastic, and we look forward to all our customers taking advantage of the new features. View the complete list of new features in Parallels Mac Management 7 new features.
Internet-Based Mac Client Management
From the very first release of Parallels Mac Management, our goal has been to extend all the capabilities of Microsoft SCCM to Mac computers. With version 7, we are finally making this vision a reality; Internet-based Mac client management is the last missing puzzle piece that closes the gap (Figure 1).
Internet-based Mac client management will allow our customers to keep their Mac computers in compliance no matter where those Mac computers are—on the corporate LAN or on a public network somewhere across the globe.
Offline macOS Imaging from External USB Drive
In order to deploy an operating system on a Mac computer, you first need to boot it. In the past, the network boot was the only option, but unfortunately this had some drawbacks related to the NetBoot protocol and the network configuration changes that may be required in order to get NetBoot to work across subnets.
In Parallels Mac Management 7, we added the ability to create a bootable media (USB flash drive or external HDD) to eliminate the need for the network boot from the macOS image deployment process. The highlights of this new functionality are:
- A bootable media contains only a boot image and the Parallels Mac Management binaries needed to work with a task sequences for Mac computers.
- When the destination Mac boots up from the bootable media, it connects to the Parallels Configuration Manager Proxy and retrieves the task sequences, the OS images, and any other required content from the network. Because the task sequence is not on the media, you can use any task sequence or other content without having to recreate the media.
Non-OSD Task Sequence Support
Task sequences in SCCM are used to automate a variety of tasks within an environment. These tasks are primarily designed for deploying operating systems, such as Windows and, in the case of Parallels Mac Management, macOS.
Until now, Parallels Mac Management required a “Deploy macOS Image” task sequence step to be added to a task sequence. But there are situations when instead of re-imaging a Mac, an IT administrator wants to perform configuration changes on a Mac or install multiple software packages. Parallels Mac Management 7 introduces the ability to create non-OSD task sequences, thus giving admins greater flexibility.
And Much More…
Other important additions in the version 7 are:
- Send Hardware Inventory on Request: A new command in the ConfigMgr Console allows admins to manually force SCCM to collect hardware inventory from a select Mac computer.
- New Installer: We have redesigned the installation program for Parallels Mac Management. A change that our existing customers will notice is the support for in-place upgrades from a previous version of Parallels Mac Management.
- We have also implemented usability improvements to the re-authentication process for Mac clients that couldn’t contact the SCCM infrastructure for a prolonged period of time.
If you would like to suggest a feature, please post your ideas in the Feature Suggestions forum.