System Management Server (SMS)
SMS helps in providing an easy way to Deploy Software and Asset Management on your Servers across your Domain or Network. SMS can be considered as a Centralized Site from where you can manage your Servers. SMS helps to keep track regarding Softwares Installed, Un-installed, tracking the Usage Pattern and help the business track Licensing Options.
Features of SMS
Being said what is SMS in really broad terms, let me get into the actual Features of SMS and how its going to help. Below are the main features of SMS 2003,
- Inventory Management
- Hardware Inventory Management
- Software Inventory Management
- Software Distribution
- Software Usage Tracking
It is always necessay to keep track of the Softwares been installed and what Hardware we have in our Servers. Say, for example, we have 5 Windows Servers in a Domain, and we do not know what Softwares are installed in those 5 Servers and what is the Hardware Configuration.
SMS helps in gathering all of these Software and Hardware Information right away and generates a good Report on the same. One can search across the Domain or Network with the Specific Software installed or Hardware. For example, one can find in which all Machines Microsoft Office is installed, etc., SMS also builds an overall report on the Softwares Installed.For example, 3 Macines have Microsoft Office installed and 2 Machines have Visual Studio installed.
With SMS one can deploy/distribute Software to any Remote Machine and also schedule it to be installed. This helps a lot and simplifies the installation job across various Servers in a Domain or Network.
For example, one can install Microsoft Office in an Application Server from SMS which might be installed in a Management Server.
This helps to keep the Organization aware of its Licenses and License Management becomes an easy task there after.
Software Usage Tracking
This is an excellent feature of SMS. It helps to identify how much percent a Software is being Used by Users. This helps a lot in managing Licenses and also when to buy extra Licenses, if required, or also does an Organization needs extra License.
SMS gives you a report on Software Usage per User or Overall.
SMS, been said about its other features above, it does need a good Reporting mechanism to provide the details, and it does. SMS also allows to create, configure and manage Reports too apart from its existing Reports.
As a whole, SMS is a good tool from Microsoft. Try it to see how east is to manage Servers !