New desktop lockdown controls for Mac OS X via Microsoft Group Policy

Centrify announced the availability of extended desktop lockdown security and configuration control for Mac OS X using Microsoft Group Policy. Centrify DirectControl for Mac OS X has added dozens of new group policy objects to its current suite of configuration and security management capabilities so that IT administrators can ensure that Macs adhere to the same best practices established for their Windows systems. Centrify DirectControl for Mac OS X is the only solution that integrates Macintoshes into Active Directory and supports Microsoft Group Policy.

The Group Policies in Centrify DirectControl for Mac OS X provide IT management broad, flexible control over security settings and configuration options that Mac users have habitually managed on their own. Centrify DirectControl for Mac OS X delivers Group Policies that are applicable to both computers and users, and can centrally manage desktop settings that are not centrally configurable by existing workgroup management solutions for the Mac OS X environment.

Administrators can now increase security by requiring a login to wake the computer from screensaver or to change system preferences; requiring authorization to mount a blank CD, an internal or external hard disk or removable media (such as a USB device); and by controlling access to sharing and firewall settings. To enforce configuration policies, DirectControl for Mac OS X can constrain which applications (such as file sharing software or media players such as Apple iTunes) can be installed and are accessible to users; can establish whether to enable automatic software updates; and can control the Dashboard, Dock, and Spotlight utilities.

The Centrify DirectControl suite consists of the DirectControl Agent and DirectControl Management Tools. The DirectControl Agent enables a Mac OS X, UNIX or Linux computer to join an Active Directory domain and provides comprehensive Active Directory services for that system including authenticating administrator and end-user logins and enforcing Group Policy updates. The DirectControl Management Tools enable administrators to set user and group access rights for the managed systems, set up Centrify Zones, run reports, configure the DirectControl Agents, and import accounts.

DirectControl for Mac OS X is installed on the Mac OS X desktop or server to enforce both computer and user group policies. The Group Policy capabilities included with DirectControl for Mac OS X leverage information stored in Active Directory about the machines and users on the network, and deliver robust capabilities such as loop-back filtering.

Pricing for Centrify DirectControl for Mac OS X is $60 per workstation and $350 pe

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