Brad Anderson, Microsoft’s vice president for Enterprise Client & Mobility, outlined some significant changes to their popular System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM). The announced changes cover both administrative details and how the service will support Windows 10 as the operating system evolves to software as a service.
The first change they address is the new nomenclature the team is using, referring to the product as ConfigMgr, a welcome change for IT pros who constantly wonder if anyone is talking about SCCM, System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) or another element of System Center; the permanent name changes also hint at a much faster development cycle. For now they are calling the product “System Center Configuration Manager vNext”, but going forward ConfigMgr will not be split into major releases plus revisions, but will now be called System Center Configuration Manager Year Month. So a version of SCCM released next week would be System Center Configuration Manager 2015 November. This change will be welcomed by some and dreaded by others, as a critical piece of their infrastructure begins to require more maintenance as updates arrive.
The rapid development cycle, while unwieldy for some enterprise customers, is detailed as needed to support the much faster release schedule Microsoft has planned for Windows 10, with a major new release on the horizon a few months after the public release. Microsoft has also integrated ConfigMgr into its InTune cloud management offering, to give administrators a single interface to manage all connected devices, including PCs, smartphones and tablets. Microsoft promises administrators ConfigMgr updates whenever Windows, Android, or iOS releases major updates with new features and requirements.
The blog post continues to discuss the telemetry they received from SCCM 2012 R2 on the SQL environments their customers are using and further refined the requirements to minimize the various possible schemas that ConfigMgr databases can run on. execute. This has allowed them to significantly reduce the risk created by more frequent updates and should make it easier to manage and support the product. They were also able to analyze customer data indicating that of their customers running ConfigMgr/InTune hybrid mode or running ConfigMgr Tech Preview, 70% of them have deployed and are managing Windows 10 devices. This is a surprising number for a market segment that is still struggling to move away from Windows XP, now in its 13th year.
Source: TechNet Blog