Microsoft Azure: Microsoft plans Windows 'Intune' for managing PCs in the cloud

Microsoft Azure: Microsoft Monday, has released the first details of an upcoming online Microsoft Azure service, targeted to medium-sized businesses, for managing Windows-based computers from a web browser. The service, dubbed Windows "Intune" is being made available to 1,000 of Microsoft's customers and information technology partners in North America as of Monday morning.

Windows Intune simplifies how businesses manage and secure PCs using Windows cloud services and Windows 7—so your computers and users can operate at peak performance, from virtually anywhere.

Windows Intune delivers cloud-based management and security capabilities that can be administered through a single Web-based console, enabling your end users and your IT staff to work from virtually anywhere-all that’s required is an Internet connection

It will ultimately be made available as a subscription service, but the pricing hasn't yet been set, said Sandrine Skinner, a director for the Windows Client Commercial unit, in an interview. The idea is to make available to mid-sized companies the types of PC management tools that are commonly used by larger businesses - including a web-based console for managing, updating, monitoring and tracking all the computers in a particular company.

Windows Intune is a comprehensive solution that includes PC management, malware protection, Windows upgrades, and more. Use the Windows Intune cloud service beta to:

  • Manage updates
  • Protect PCs from malware
  • Proactively monitor PCs
  • Provide remote assistance
  • Track hardware & software inventory
  • Set security policies

"Mid-market organizations typically have the same IT needs and desktop infrastructure needs as enterprise customers, so they kind of aspire to have access to enterprise-class solutions, yet they do not have the budget or the means, the IT help, that enterprise customers have," Skinner said.

The service will work with Windows 7 Enterprise, Ultimate and Professional; Windows Vista Enterprise, Ultimate, and Business; Windows XP Professional Service Pack.

Microsoft Azure: Microsoft monday, has released the first details of an upcoming online Microsoft Azure service, targeted to medium-sized businesses

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