Microsoft Windows Intune review

8 Apr 2011

An affordable way to not only manage a fleet of desktop PCs and laptops, but also to upgrade them to Windows 7

Price when reviewed 
9
5

Managing a collection of desktop and laptop computers can be a nightmare. Although there are strong and fully featured tools to do this task, such as Microsoft’s excellent System Center tools, for many companies these are a daunting prospect. Indeed, the cure can look worse than the disease for those unable to invest time and effort into such matters.

Intune is a new type of product from Microsoft’s management tools division. It’s designed to be easy to install, deploy and run. In other words, it’s aimed at the smaller business which may not have a full set of IT skills on site.

Microsoft Windows Intune

Unlike previous offerings from Microsoft, such as the multi-site rental model for Microsoft Operations Manager, this one is fundamentally different – all the back-end processing for Intune happens within the Microsoft cloud infrastructure. You don’t need any servers running locally to process all the data: everything is passed up the pipe to the datacenter.

First steps

First, you need to create an account with Microsoft. Intune is a subscription service where you pay per month per machine. Want to add another machine? Just add it on to your list and it will appear on the monthly billing.

For each managed computer, you run a small Windows Intune Center application that lets you see whether the PC is up to speed as far as updates are concerned. You can also manually run the Windows Intune Endpoint Protection antivirus/antimalware tool to check that nothing is amiss, and you can schedule a remote support session from the system administrator.

Details

Price ex VAT £7, per seat per month
Price inc VAT £9
Overall rating 5
Ease of Use rating 5
Features & Design 5
Value for Money 5
Software subcategory System tools

Operating system support

Operating system Windows Vista supported? yes
Operating system Windows XP supported? yes