Software management in Connectwise Automate can be a very clunky experience, with a lot of administrative overhead. Not only must the install be automated, but then the install script must be applied to a client or a group, EDFs to track the deployment must be configured, and to truely automate it an auto-join search or monitor must be created to deploy the software on a recurring basis. All this must be duplicated for each application, and this still leaves the update management problems unsolved.
Here at Automation Theory we want to properly solve third-party software deployment and patching in a way that scales, supports a large market share of applications, and allows for IT providers to add custom software. To meet these needs, we’re planning on launching a new integration: Enterprise Package Management.
Core Features of Enterprise Package Management
- Reusable groups of software packages that can be applied to the Client, Location, and Computer levels in Automate
- Dedicated cloud appliance to host software packages (and large files)
- Creation of custom packages for deploying software and configurations
- Ability to set update behavior — with the ability to stage updates
- Provide reporting data so patch compliance can be calculated
Enterprise Package Management would be a package of a plugin for Automate plus a hosted package repository. It would be compatible with the Chocolatey format, allowing for all 8,000+ applications in the community currently plus any custom packages created with the plugin (anything that can be scripted with PowerShell can be turned into a package). The hosted repository will also have the ability to host non-packaged files to provide direct download links for scripts.
Currently we are in the planning and prototyping stages of development. We are actively looking for MSPs who face challenges with third-party patching or software deployment. If this is you, we’d like to understand the particulars of your situation better, and get your feedback as development progresses. Use the form below to join our contact list and get updates on our progress.