CSM for Intune handles all of the work related to software upgrades on behalf of the organization’s IT support – the customer specifies the software deployment policies only once, after which the patch management process works by itself in the background.
Centero Software Manager for Intune has reached an advanced stage in its product development. Similar to other CSM products, the CSM for Intune is designed to be an easy-to-use tool that automates the entire patch management process for workstation environments. We have addressed CSM for Intune’s product development in our previous blog (see our blog here).
In this article, we will discuss how the CSM for Intune’s patch management process works – from configuring the deployment process to installing new software versions.
Configuring the Deployment Settings in Management Portal
The one-time configuring of the deployment settings is the only task in the upgrade process that the organization’s IT support has to carry out. The settings are configured via the management portal during CSM for Intune’s deployment phase or whenever the process has to be modified for deploying new applications.
The Azure AD groups for which the upgrade deployments are run are configured through the portal along with their schedule.
The scheduling enables you to define, for example, that upgrades are first run for test devices and only then for production devices. This functionality is not available natively in Intune. Instead it is an important part of the service that was fully developed by Centero, which enables deploying applications according to the customer organization’s requirements.
The management portal also enables you to specify settings for CSM for Intune’s desktop notifications and for the application’s upgrade email notifications.
This configuration and the potential modifications of the deployment process, which are done via the portal, are the only tasks that the customer’s IT support has to carry out! CSM for Intune automatically performs all of the other software upgrade tasks.
Software Version Monitoring
Checking for new software versions is a daily procedure that is automated in CSM, but which should be performed manually by our experts in order to ensure the service quality. The automatic procedure does not necessarily receive information on the new versions of all the CSM-supported applications.
The Background Process When New Software Versions Become Available
When a new software version is acquired from a software vendor, Centero begins its manual work stage, which the customer experiences as a background process service. CSM for Intune always uses software vendors’ official and original installation packages, which are modified to be compatible with CSM.
In this phase, the installation package is checked for viruses, and its quality and functionality are inspected to ensure that the further processing of the package is beneficial.
The next step is packaging. Unnecessary icons and notifications that can disturb the end user have been removed from the Centero’s packages, so they are perfect for enterprise use.
Our packaging experts ensure that the packages are suitable for all customers. In case the application requires customer-specific modifications, Centero also offers an application management service. Ask us about the management service »
Next, the upgrade package is prepared to be compatible with Microsoft Intune. In addition to CSM for Intune, we also offer other CSM products, e.g. CSM for CSSM and CSM for WSUS.
The next step in the process is testing the package, during which the new software version is deployed in Centero’s test environment. If any issues are detected in the software vendor’s package during testing, the version can be left unpublished. Centero will inform the customers about these kinds of detected problems through its own channels. Software installations are always validated by Centero’s packaging experts!
Next, the tested and prepared upgrade package will be published for customers in the CSM service. CSM for Intune will perform the deployment automatically to the customer’s environment according to the configured rules. In this phase, the previous software version is removed, and the new software version is installed on customer’s end-point devices. The installation is performed according to the schedules configured by the customer, either to all of the workstations at once or in phases.
With CSM for Intune, keeping the end-point device environment secure and keeping its software versions up to date is easy for the organization’s IT department as well as for the software’s end users. Once the IT department has selected the applications that will be updated through Centero’s management portal and configured the deployment settings, CSM for Intune and Centero’s experts will take care of the rest. Using Centero Software Manager is just that easy!