Near the end of the last year, Microsoft released version 1511 of its System Center Configuration Manager, optimizing it for Windows 10 and transitioning to Software as a Service (SaaS) model. Now, the company has released version 1610 of the System Center Configuration Manager for the Current Branch (CB).
Microsoft states that the adoption rate for System Center Configuration Manager in the CB is quite high, with over 25,000 organizations using version 1511 or higher of the model on over 50 million devices.
Now, based on feedback from the Technical Preview branch of the software, that was tested by "real customers, in real production environments", the company has released version 1610 of the Configuration Manager. The update, currently being used in over a million devices, packs a variety of new features and enhancements.
Version 1610 improves upon Windows 10, Office 365, and application management. It also enhances the end user experience and client management functionalities. Some of the new features included in the update are as follows:
- Windows 10 Upgrade Analytics integration allows you to assess and analyze device readiness and compatibility with Windows 10 to allow smoother upgrades.
- Office 365 Servicing Dashboard and app deployment to clients features help you to deploy Office 365 apps to clients as well as track Office 365 usage and update deployments.
- Software Updates Compliance Dashboard allows you to view the current compliance status of devices in your organization and quickly analyze the data to see which devices are at risk.
- Cloud Management Gateway provides a simpler way to manage Configuration Manager clients on the Internet. You can use the ConfigMgr console to deploy the service in Microsoft Azure and configure the supported roles to allow cloud management gateway traffic.
- Client Peer Cache is a new built-in solution in Configuration Manager that allows clients to share content with other clients directly from their local cache with monitoring and troubleshooting capabilities.
- Enhancements in Software Center including customizable branding in more dialogs, notifications of new software, improvements to the notification experience for high-impact task sequence deployments, and ability for users to request applications and view request history directly in Software Center.
- New remote control features including performance optimization for remote control sessions and keyboard translation.
In addition, Microsoft has also introduced new features for customers utilizing Configuration Manager connected with Microsoft Intune. These include new settings for Android, iOS, Mac, Windows 10 desktop and Mobile, Windows 10 Team, Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1. Moreover, it includes support for paid apps in the Windows Store for Business and Lookout integration, among other features.
The update will be rolling out globally over the next few weeks and will be automatically downloaded. Customers will be able to install it from the “Updates and Servicing” node in the Configuration Manager console. However, those eager to be among the first to try out the new features can do so by running the following PowerShell script. You can check out the full list of the new features of version 1610 of System Center Configuration Manager by heading over to the following blog post.