Comparing 8 desktop management software options for business


When businesses consider their choices for taking care of users’ endpoints, it can be critical to pick desktop administration application by on the lookout into distinct features, integrations and licensing designs.

The obstacle for yrs has been managing cellular gadgets, desktops and connected software program along with one particular yet another, for the reason that normally occasions they every require separate tools. About the years, these specialised equipment evolved into a more common platform called unified endpoint administration (UEM).

UEM has quite a few product or service types each and every with exceptional specialties.

  • Consumer administration applications (CMT) incorporate desktop and laptop administration on each a unit and software degree.
  • Mobile product administration (MDM) will involve machine components administration.
  • Cellular software management (MAM)  handles application management.
  • Identification and entry management (IAM) features authorization, authentication, password and solitary indication-on management.
  • Company mobility administration (EMM) includes all mobile management tools, but it does not manage desktop personal computers and laptops.

Stability is not a distinctive classification, but UEM incorporates it to some diploma in every providing — sometimes as an insert-on.

It can be bewildering, as distributors designed the goods individually before converging them into a single UEM products. Even so, some products still record the earlier mentioned acronyms although describing person capabilities. For example, MDM may be shown as a unique merchandise on a vendor’s web page, but it is sold as aspect of the UEM item the MDM aspect won’t be able to be split out. Nonetheless, there are narrower solutions that do deal with unique functions, these as Microsoft’s Procedure Configuration Supervisor, which is a desktop administration resource and not Microsoft’s thoroughly-fledged UEM products.

MEM, EMM and UEM comparison chart

While UEM is a blend of present platforms in a lot of methods, there can be value in working with the much more specialized management platforms — these kinds of as MDM and IAM — for a additional concentrated method to every single part of finish-person management. Businesses may perhaps like a key characteristic from just one MDM vendor’s system, but the desktop administration capabilities from one more.

For organizations concentrating on what they want for desktop administration, it is really worthwhile to evaluation the solutions in phrases of their desktop management capabilities. As this sort of, this comparison of products and solutions and attributes focuses on desktop administration and does not consider things outside of that.

Top rated desktop administration computer software vendors

Whilst corporations these as Gartner do not generally determine merchandise especially as desktop administration application, we can use Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for UEM as a baseline to compile a listing of practical choices. IT directors really should review the desktop management capabilities of just about every resource primarily based on this setting up issue.

This comparison explores choices from Microsoft, VMware, IBM, ManageEngine, Citrix, BlackBerry, LogMeIn and Ivanti. These are all experienced items designed on desktop and mobile items for years before consolidating into UEM. In addition, these products and solutions contain the potential to handle cellular gadgets and a lot of offer a cloud-centered management pane.

Desktop management capabilities to glimpse for

Sellers really don’t all detect the exact attributes in the identical way, and they usually differ significantly on what they contain. Some sellers aim a lot on stability in a essential product, and some others separate safety into a individual merchandise. The characteristic list underneath is a established of quite popular functions among the goods that are vital to IT administrators. Separating the options into these classes makes it possible for for a extra apples-to-apples comparison amongst goods.

Preserve in brain that desktop management, as described here, includes hardware — PCs and laptops — and software program for consumer productiveness and administration capabilities. Mobile equipment are not integrated.

  • Patch administration. Often bundled in computer software administration, this specifies the characteristic of handling and distributing patches and updates to clientele.
  • Software program and application administration. This features application deployment, attribute and model management for buyers and IT purposes.
  • Distant obtain. This aspect holds a unique importance to distinctive suppliers. It could be a remote desktop application for end users, remote management of units, end users or other identical capabilities.
  • Compliance procedures and enforcement. While directors can make compliance stories manually, these suppliers specifically discover a aspect to give compliance info.
  • Desktop gadget configuration and management. This is the core of desktop management — components provisioning, program configuration and an effortless-to-use interface. Ideally, these attributes must all be on a solitary pane of glass to take care of consumers, devices, software package, updates and other capabilities.
  • Lively Directory (Advert) reviews and interface. These units have an Energetic Directory connector to enable the console to handle Advert customers, devices and teams. The devices pull these from the Advert area, and in some circumstances it incorporates reporting abilities.
  • Person admin. Some choices give management for consumers, groups and similar attributes. Advert connections may perhaps or may perhaps not be integrated.
  • Asset management and tracking. Although all desktop administration items deliver product controls as very well, asset administration is a certain function to deal with all IT property, often with monitoring and reporting capabilities.
  • Cloud functionality. These products and solutions offer you some amount of cloud capability. The administration perform may possibly be in an app in the cloud, it might control apps and virtual equipment in the cloud or accomplish other related cloud-based mostly functions.
  • Electric power management. This incorporates distant wake-up, ability on and off and ability preserving management functions.
  • OS aid. This determines the working methods that IT can install the merchandise on. This may well or may possibly not be the list of shopper OSes that can be managed.
  • Information management. Articles management methods are ordinarily independent solutions to manage paperwork and documents, and produce reviews. Nonetheless, some desktop administration units consist of content material management functions.
  • Lifecycle administration. This entails handling application, apps and equipment from deployment through deactivation for responsibilities this kind of as setting up, tracking, deployment and checking. These products offer some amount of designed-in lifecycle administration, but the diploma may differ from product or service to merchandise.
  • Safety. Offerings typically contain some amount of stability such as antivirus or malware protection in addition to area security. This could be offered from a listing company this kind of as Active Directory, both created-in or through a companion. Some items may possibly involve an upgraded support degree to incorporate safety attributes.

Solution feature comparison

Desktop management software program differs tremendously, depending on how vendors apply and assist capabilities. Also, distributors may possibly provide a few or a lot more item tiers that incorporate the added functions higher than. Hence, it is vital to evaluation the aspect sets for each product’s offerings to identify which one particular satisfies an organization’s desires.

desktop management software comparison chart

This comparison can help slim down the list of items that an business really should assessment and strongly take into account. Organizations very likely will need extra specifics when thinking of desktop management application, so the ideal route is to discuss right to the most promising sellers. Most will deliver a free of charge demo or analysis license to assistance corporations make your mind up.

Product notes and pricing

There are some crucial notes to know about each and every seller, their providing and their pricing. Some goods require making contact with the seller for comprehensive pricing info.

ManageEngine Central

ManageEngine is just one of the core vendors to offer a UEM product or service and is regularly in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant stories — even though it is really at this time in the “specialized niche” group. In addition to a reliable set of cell device applications, this item options components-independent deployment, customized deployment templates and a amount of include-ons, which includes the following:

  • Endpoint Protection
  • MDM
  • OS Deployment
  • Failover Server
  • Safe Gateway Server
  • Multi-Language Pack

ManageEngine utilizes a ‘call for quote’ pricing mechanism so corporations will have to speak with a vendor consultant to get a feeling of the pricing.

IBM MaaS360

A good UEM products, IBM MaaS360 has some interesting AI factors which include a plan suggestion engine and a voice-centered AI administrative assistant. IBM costs its products in 4 degrees. Whilst the seller offers extra details on its web page, the adhering to pricing outline provides a excellent baseline:

  • Essentials: $4.00 for every gadget, for each thirty day period
  • Deluxe: $5.00 for every gadget, for every month
  • Premier: $6.25 for each unit, for each month
  • Business: $9.00 per device, for each month

Microsoft Endpoint Manager — Microsoft Configuration Manager

IT directors will know that Microsoft typically has complicated licensing, but these choices are surely worth seeking into for some companies. Their UEM solution, Microsoft Endpoint Supervisor (MEM), features Microsoft Managed Desktop as a cloud-centered IT management and stability checking assistance. For the applications of this report, we emphasis specifically on the desktop management capabilities of Microsoft Configuration Manager — which is a part of MEM.

The pricing and licensing products are a lot of with plenty of different paths that companies have to  negotiate based mostly on precise needs. Microsoft does, nonetheless, present a solid roadmap for navigating all these disparate companies.   

VMware Workspace A single

VMware Workspace A single has some state-of-the-art characteristics such as certification administration. The seller presents a huge assortment of deployment and provisioning choices which incorporates actual physical and digital equipment. Its unit management choices offer you innovative, enterprise and mission-critical management degrees as an include-on — a little something that opponents have not identified. Similar to IBM, VMware features an automated AI virtual assistant for person assist. Pricing is based mostly on a regular basis, for each person and for each product. Workspace Just one As well as, Common, Sophisticated and Organization Suites do not have general public pricing details.

  • Worker Essentials — for unmanaged products: $1.66 for each system, for every month or $3 for every person, for every thirty day period
  • Cellular Necessities — mobile only: $3 for each product, for each month or $5.40 per consumer, per month
  • Desktop Necessities — desktop only: $4.00 for every system, for every month or $7.20 for every user, per thirty day period
  • UEM Necessities — desktop and mobile: $5.25 for every product, for every thirty day period or $9.45 for each consumer, for each thirty day period

Citrix Workspace

One more experienced UEM products, Citrix Workspace, builds on Citrix’s base products and solutions and features substantial digital application and virtual desktop assistance. Citrix is the only evaluated solution that specifies a Microsoft Business 365 integration in addition to extensions to support Windows 7, 8.1, 10 and 11. Citrix Workspace gives administration with no necessitating brokers to be put in.

Pricing is at four tiers.

  • Essentials: $2 per user, per month
  • Normal: $7 per consumer, for every month
  • High quality: $18 per consumer, for every thirty day period
  • Premium Moreover: $25 per user, for every month

BlackBerry UEM

BlackBerry is a important participant in the UEM sector and has been in Gartner’s report for many a long time. BlackBerry UEM functions a solitary-pane-of-glass UEM console for cell, desktop, laptop and computer software administration, along with cloud alternatives.

BlackBerry’s pricing is a carefully held secret, with no pricing tables or function lists on their web-site.


With a historical past of being a distant obtain item, LogMeIn characteristics a sturdy portfolio of remote accessibility and manage and IT automation employing scripting for reporting and proactive alerts. LogMeIn options software and product administration in a single-pane-of-glass console and functions help for kiosks and position-of-sale units.

Pricing is a tiny various. This vendor features a base strategy of $80 for each thirty day period with a bare minimum of 25 gadgets and basic capabilities which include the pursuing:

  • distant obtain
  • person and gadget management
  • background accessibility
  • file transfer
  • desktop sharing

State-of-the-art functions are available in three include-ons.

  • Security: $47 per thirty day period
  • Automation: $47 for every month
  • Perception: $47 for each thirty day period

Ivanti Neurons for UEM

This UEM supplying from Ivanti enables IT to automate computer software and OS updates and deployments and presents quite a few monitoring and troubleshooting features that IT can use to deal with UX issues as they occur. The merchandise delivers serious-time session info on managed desktops, which can assist IT recognize the root brings about of user issues. Ivanti’s system also supports remote obtain desktop sessions for users to work on their in-workplace desktop from remote destinations. That identical operate also allows IT directors to glimpse into person issues with a fingers-on remote session.

Ivanti does not have public pricing facts on Ivanti Neurons for UEM, though it gives perpetual or subscription licensing.