updated 07:18 am EST, Tue November 5, 2013
Collection of Parallels tools to help manage virtual machines in enterprise
Virtualization solutions provider Parallels has introduced a new suite of tools and updates for mixed Mac and Windows environments, aimed at enterprise. Parallels Business Solutions rolls together the Parallels Management Suite, Parallels Desktop for Mac Enterprise Edition, and the Parallels Access iPad app, with the entire collection meant to help IT managers use the existing Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) infrastructure to manage both Macs and virtual machines.
Parallels Desktop for Mac Enterprise Edition follows on from the earlier Desktop 9 release by allowing for the creation of virtual machines with expiration dates, options to run a virtual machine in a headless mode, enhanced command line-based support, remote password reset, and greater control over mass deployments of virtual machines.
On the administration side, Parallels Management - Mac for Microsoft SCCM extends an existing SCCM environment with the ability to manage Macs alongside Windows. It can be used to enforce compliance to IT policies, deploy software and patches as well as OS X images to machines. Supporting OS X Mavericks, it can discover and create an inventory of all Macs on a network, allowing Microsoft SCCM to provide details about them alongside Windows PCs.
The third aspect of the three tools being outlined for enterprise is Parallels Access, an iPad app that the company launched in August. The app "Applifies" Windows and Mac applications, letting users control them remotely as if they are an iPad app, even if they are not made for tablets. The app launcher can start any application, an app switcher can let the user go between apps easily, and a full desktop keyboard can also be brought up on the iPad screen for data entry.
The Parallels Business Solutions will be available to use from November 7th, with all components requiring annual subscriptions, though volume licensing is also available. Parallels Desktop for Mac Enterprise Edition will start from $100 per year per Mac, Parallels Management - Mac will start from $30 annually per Mac, and Parallels Access will cost $49 per year per computer being accessed.