Twelvetide, Day 8: Check the Competition

This is the eighth part of a twelve-day series on my new year’s resolutions to become a better Mac admin. During these twelve days my book “Packaging for Apple Administrators” is on sale! (Previous Post: “Open Source”)

When you have your management system running happily it is time to build a new one. There is much to learn by having an alternative management system up and running, even if it never leaves your testing environment. You will have to question and re-analyze many of your scripts, workflows and presumptions. You will become a better sys admin in the process.

Since you built a solid testing environment after Day 3, you can dedicate part of your testing infrastructure to building a second environment for testing an alternative management system.

If you have a commercial management system, then Munki is the obvious choice for an alternative server. If you have Munki running, you can usually get a demo license for one of the commercial servers. Even if you come to the conclusion that the management system you started out with is the best for your setup, you find pieces of your workflow that can be improved while re-building everything in a different way.

This doesn’t just hold for the management system, but also for the imaging system (DeployStudio, Imagr, Casper Imaging etc.) or your packaging tool (Jamf Composer, Packages, pkgbuild, munkipkg) or any other tool really.

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