Linux Device Management: Overview, Challenges, Benefits
Linux has been around since the mid-1990s and is everywhere with a large user base worldwide. Linux is there in your home appliances, supercomputers, enterprise desktops, and servers. Often used as a platform of choice on desktops and servers at places where security is crucial (for example, stock exchanges), it is known to be one of the most reliable operating systems in the world.
Though Linux is used across the globe, many IT organizations are still facing the challenge of managing Linux devices. However, with Linux desktop variants changing the market dynamics, IT admins need to consider Linux device management as an inseparable part of their device management strategy. With Linux device management creating a buzz around, managing Linux devices is more feasible than before.
Linux Device Management: An Overview
Linux device management helps IT admins of any organization to streamline the entire lifecycle of Linux devices, from enrollment to decommissioning of the devices. IT admins can provision, secure and monitor Linux desktops and PCs using an MDM. MDM for Linux helps them keep an eye on all Linux devices and remotely perform administrative functions. Getting granular control over managed devices becomes more simplified when IT admins have access to an MDM dashboard right at their fingertips.
The Challenge with Linux Device Management
Historically, Linux device management was considered the expertise of a few IT professionals. This meant only a few IT admins who had complete technical knowledge of Linux could manage Linux devices. It was considered that DevOps personnel and IT admins responsible for managing Linux devices need to have the know-how of using the Linux command line and be able to write and run scripts as and when required. Today, with solutions like MDM, managing Linux devices has become easier for IT admins.
Linux Device Management: Capabilities
MDM solutions like Scalefusion simplify the enrollment of Linux devices to a large extent. IT admins can create enrollment configurations on the MDM dashboard for quick enrollments. Once the devices are enrolled into an MDM, device policies can be pushed to devices individually or in groups. In most cases, Linux device enrollment is taken care of by the IT admins of the organization. However, users can also enroll with the help of a set of instructions on ‘how to enroll’ from IT admins.
Remote scripting in Linux devices helps IT admins create a sequence of commands and execute them. It allows for storing certain commands required for repetitive tasks. IT admins can execute scripts to perform any action on remote devices. Scripts are executed by IT admins to perform actions like installing/uninstalling apps, locking/unlocking devices, creating a folder or a file, pushing files, pushing system updates, and application updates. To sum up, any operation on a remotely managed device can be performed by IT admins using custom scripts.
Device and Data security
When devices use a public network, they are at a constant risk of cyberattacks. Malware and viruses tend to barge into devices and company networks for corporate data theft. Such cyber threats also affect devices adversely. With Linux device management, IT admins can create Wi-Fi configurations, so devices have secure Wi-Fi access. MDM for Linux helps create a protective cover for devices to avoid data leakages and device misuse. Additionally, users can connect devices to Wi-Fi seamlessly without having to enter a password.
Linux device management allows IT admins to configure security policies for an added layer of security. The security policies include configuring passcode policies like MFA to access devices, wiping device data in case the device is lost or stolen and disabling USB peripheral access to ensure files and data are not exploited by external sources.
With MDM for Linux, IT admins can perform critical actions from the MDM dashboard and manage remote devices efficiently. These actions include factory reset of devices which wipes off existing user settings, rebooting devices, remote wiping device data, and managing shutdown or restart of devices. IT admins can execute actions by running custom scripts while minimizing redundant tasks.
Device Vitals and Metrics
With Linux device management, IT admins can get all the vital device-related information of the entire Linux device inventory in one place. Device information related to CPU, battery and RAM are some of the metrics crucial to device management. MDM for Linux also provides information on the history of devices concerning their usage and device battery.
Benefits of Linux Device Management
Linux devices face challenges with maintaining compliance, protection against malware attacks and automating workflows. However, Linux device management helps organizations of all sizes to manage and secure devices. Some benefits of Linux device management are:
- Linux MDM allows IT teams to control and secure administrative policies on Linux devices. Streamlined device management helps companies enhance employee productivity, reduce operating costs, and improve user experience.
- Comprehensive device information can be obtained on the dashboard using Linux MDM. Device information helps IT admins to keep an eye on the Linux device inventory and take preventive measures wherever necessary.
- MDM for Linux provides an extra layer of security while helping IT organizations ensure consistent security compliance.
- MDM for Linux can readily accommodate the management of an increased number of devices when companies expand and grow in the future. Further, with an increase in IoT and cloud computing, companies have a distributed workforce. Linux device management enables IT admins to remotely manage and control devices irrespective of where the device is located.
Apart from all this, Linux OS is open source, highly customizable and runs faster than most other operating systems. All these advantages make Linux device management crucial for organizations.
Linux is one of the go-to OS that businesses prefer as they can customize the OS according to the nature of their work. Though largely favored because of the flexibility it offers, there is a need for remote management of Linux devices to support organizations with a distributed workforce. Linux device management ensures that devices operate in a secure environment and contribute to higher productivity and security compliance.