With what will be a single launch event and a single release, System Center 2012 is a top to bottom revamp of Microsoft’s traditional management, monitoring and protection suite.
This latest release is intended to be a major offensive into managing private clouds for organizations and takes major steps to that end while finally adding support for the latest wave of operating system releases that we saw in the fall of 2012. Here is a look at the products that are included in System Center 2012 SP1:
- Unified Installer. Designed to perform new, clean installations of System Center 2012 for testing and evaluation purposes only. Personally, I find the Unified Installer mostly useless, but it’s probably good for testing.
- App Controller. Provides a common self-service experience across private and public clouds allowing application owners to easily build, configure, deploy, and manage new services
- Configuration Manager. Formerly known as Systems Management Server, SCCM provides configuration management for Microsoft systems. The new version provides additional user-centric features that can help you empower users with the devices and applications they need to be productive while maintaining compliance and control.
- Data Protection Manager. Backup and, more importantly, recovery! DPM provides data protection for Windows servers and clients and does a really good job doing it. DPM supports disk, tape, and off premise solutions.
- Endpoint Protection. Formerly known as ForeFront Endpoint Protection, this is Microsoft’s centrally managed, lightweight and very capable antimalware and threat detection solution.
- Operations Manager. Provides you with a framework that enables comprehensive monitoring of the infrastructure, from servers to applications to the network hardware itself. Monitoring is a critical component of the private cloud.
- Orchestrator. If you’re going to run a private cloud, you need to be able to automate common and key processes. Orchestrator provides this capability, which will help you standardize processes and run an efficient operation.
- Service Manager. No matter how good the environment, issues will arise. Service Manager helps you take charge of issues by providing a self-service service desk with a solution that helps you integrate people, workflows, and knowledge across enterprise infrastructure and applications.
- Virtual Machine Manager. Many of today’s environments are heterogeneous or may become heterogeneous through technology planning or acquisitions. VMM provides virtual machine management and services deployment with support for multi-hypervisor environments.