What is the right cloud-based IT management solution for your company? What will ultimately help you save the most time and money? There are a plethora of tools and platforms available on the market, so finding the right solution can be a struggle.
That’s why in this blog post, we’re going to compare two popular IT management solutions. One is the Cloud Management Suite and other Connect Wise Automate. We will investigate and find out which is most likely to be the best solution for your company.
What Are Cloud Management Suite and ConnectWise Automate For?
Cloud Management Suite and ConnectWise Automate are IT management platforms that allow you to monitor and manage your entire IT environment from the cloud. All you need is your browser and an internet connection to get started.
These two tools are quite similar, so let’s take a look at both of their main features to get a better idea of each tools’ capabilities:
|Cloud Management Suite||ConnectWise Automate|
|Web-based dashboard with support for device discovery and software distribution||Yes||Yes|
|Patch management||Yes, for any device: Windows, Mac, Linux, 3rd party apps, desktops and laptops, legacy OS, servers, virtual machines, IoT devices||Yes, for Windows and 3rd party apps: Adobe Flash apps, iTunes, Chrome and Mozilla Firefox, Oracle Java, PDF creator, 7-Zip, Notepad++, VLC Media Player|
|Remote monitoring||Yes, plus remote control with no client deployment and remote desktop access from anywhere in the world||Yes, but no remote control (you need to get the ConnectWise Control tool)|
|Reporting||Yes, plus compliance reporting for HIPAA, SOX, PCI, etc. industries||Yes|
But while this might give you a better idea of what you get with each tool, it doesn’t really paint a complete picture of what they can do for your business. So, let’s take a deeper look at how each tool works.
How Cloud Management Suite Works
Cloud Management Suite has two main features that have their own and smaller functionalities:
- Patch management – you can manage and deploy patches for absolutely any type of software or device you’re using in your company.
- IT management – for managing your entire IT network and device environment from one central dashboard, even remotely.
Let’s start with patch management first. The predictive patch management feature means that the tool will find and catch any issues or software updates as they appear. In other words, the surface on your dashboard is where you can deploy them with a click without having to send virtual agents nor actual people to install it on the device itself.
It makes patch management very quick and easy. In addition, all of it will be recorded automatically for security and auditing purposes as well as to create reports.
Not only can you deploy patches easily and quickly, but you can also save time and money on software distribution. Basically, you can distribute new software packages across your entire company to thousands of different endpoints remotely.
This does bring about a different concern, though. Will you be using too much bandwidth to deploy and install all of this software? Thankfully, Cloud Management Suite does strive to minimize network bandwidth to avoid this issue no matter how many endpoints you need to send software to.
Another important feature is that you can remote control all of these endpoints in your company and gain access to the devices you want. This happens both on the inside and outside your of the network. Plus, with remote desktop access, you and your employees or colleagues can easily and securely access their work computer from anywhere in the world just by using a browser.
In terms of your dashboards and reporting features, you can create custom reports. For example, keep track of your patch and software deployments as well as check your patch compliance summary or your emergency ransomware compliance.
Now, what about ConnectWise Automate?
How ConnectWise Automate Works
ConnectWise Automate is quite similar in terms of features, although they organize theirs differently. Here is the following details about it:
- Automation features, both with agents and without agents, for maintenance, software distribution, and desktop and server management.
- Discovery, for finding assets on your networks and automating agent deployments based on needs.
- Manage your entire IT infrastructure.
- Monitor for IT issues to improve your reactive response times.
- Windows and third-party patch management.
So to start with, ConnectWise does allow you to discover and monitor all of your devices and users.
This dashboard can be customized to your liking, so you can add exactly the columns you need. Plus, you can use the search bar to find whatever you need as quickly as possible. Just like this feature, all other ConnectWise Automate’s features are designed to make the life of your tech team as easy as possible.
For example, they will be able to manage multiple devices at the same time and perform proactive maintenance on them as well as automate agentless SSH and Telnet-enabled devices (routers, certain IoT hardware, etc.)
However, if you want to also be able to provide support remotely to your employees you will need to get another tool from ConnectWise, ConnectWise Control.
In terms of patch management, you’ll find out within hours if there are any new patches that need deploying. Plus, you do have the option to set up different patch automation such as defining rules for which patches should be approved. When a certain patch needs to be installed, and what should happen in case there is a reboot.
So, what is the better choice between Cloud Management Suite and ConnectWise Automate? It does depend on your company’s particular needs. Although they are quite similar, there are a few differences that can help you make a decision.
For example, Cloud Management Suite is all about remote management. Everything can be done from any location from sending and installing security updates and new software packages. This includes the thousands of endpoints to remote controlling your endpoints from anywhere in the world with just your browser needed.
ConnectWise Automate, on the other hand, doesn’t have as many remote management features. Although it does have a plethora of automation features, you do need to deploy agents for certain tasks. The good news is the tool does automate that process too.
Another big difference is that you can use the Cloud Management Suite for patch management for any kind of device you can think of. Meanwhile, ConnectWise Automate focuses mostly on Windows patches. Once again, this can be a big deciding factor, as your company might need to secure a WiFi-enabled printer, your team members’ personal iPhones, or a “smart” door lock system, for example.
Have you tried either of these tools? If so, what are your thoughts, and which solution do you think stands out?