Original Date: 10/10/2005
Revision Date: / /
Best Practice : Desktop Management Using LANDesk
While personal computers used on the factory floor and elsewhere are gradually being replaced, they remain susceptible to network-based viruses that could have a devastating impact to productivity. Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems now uses a combination of Microsoft Active Directory and LANDesk to remotely manage every network computer.
Before a desktop management system was implemented at Raytheon’s Andover Integrated Air Defense Center (IADC), the IT Technical Support Team had to manually install software patches on every PC. With as many as 12,000 PCs in 12 Integrated Defense System (IDS) sites and 10 patches per release, upgrades could take days or even weeks. True software usage, penetration, and software licensing control were difficult and inaccurate creating the need for a system management tool.
The Andover IT Team combined the LANDesk Management System with Microsoft Active Directory, creating a system with enhanced capabilities that include IT asset management, remote control problem resolution, software license monitoring, patch management and software distribution. This Asset Management capability enables the IT Team to get a daily snapshot of the user base (i.e, who is logged into the system and what systems are used) and to gather pertinent infrastructure metrics such as service packs installed, operating system status, and disk space. The cycle time to close IT support calls is reduced by the system’s Remote Control Capability feature that has virtually eliminated site visits to provide customer support. The Software License Monitoring feature allows the IT Team to know which tools are being used and to what extent so that a proactive licensing management method can be used. Alarms can be set when software license usage is at the limit or when prohibited software is used. The system’s Software Distribution feature allows the IT team to push software applications and software patches to every PC in the network.
When the IDS network was hit by the Lovegate virus prior to the implementation of LANDesk, it took the IT team 15 days to restore the system. With LANDesk in place, it takes less than one day to stabilize the network when a virus is encountered. Anti-virus software and security updates with LANDesk have saved Raytheon IDS approximately $362,000. Based on historical data of 3 to 4 virus outbreaks annually, the cost avoidance of lost worker productivity is estimated to be between $12 million and $16 million annually.
In the near future, IDS plans to include in-place Windows operating system upgrades on existing PCs and improve automatic software license discovery and tracking.
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