Tom Kemp's Centrify Blog

DirectControl for Mac OS X Adds Key New Features; Gets Certified by Department of Defense

Friday, February 12, 2010

At MacWorld we announced the release of DirectControl version 4.4 for Apple Mac OS X. With this release we expanded the number of Mac-centric Group Policies we offer, added support for FileVault, further enhanced our Snow Leopard support and delivered tighter integration with Group Logic's ExtremeZ-IP. We are also proud to announce that our support for the government Common Access Card (CAC) was certified by the Department of Defense Joint Interoperability Test Command (JITC). Let me provide a bit of detail on each below, but the bottom line is that this another proofpoint that Centrify continues to set the standard for integrating Macs into an Active Directory environment.

Let me first talk about JITC certification. The Joint Interoperability Test Command (JITC) provides test, evaluation, and certification services for acquiring and deploying global "net-centric" military capabilities. With certification of its DirectControl for Mac OS X solution, Centrify can now assure government agencies and those who interact with them that DirectControl for Mac OS X meets the high standards established by the JITC. Among the required capabilities is support for Common Access Card (CAC), i.e. smart card login to Active Directory. Centrify JITC certification is now listed under Public Key-Enabled Products on the JITC website. To review the current JITC certification online, please visit http://jitc.fhu.disa.mil/pki/pke_lab/app_testing/details/centrify_direct_control_4_4_0.html or click here to view the letter the JITC sent us. And unlike other Mac smartcard solutions, we do support Snow Leopard.

Next up is enhanced Group Policy support. We go beyond authenticating and admitting Macs to a Windows domain, our goal is to provide comprehensive Mac desktop management via familiar Windows management tools. Centrify DirectControl already delivers hundreds of Active Directory Group Policies to lockdown Mac desktops, and with version 4.4 released last week, new Group Policy for login settings let administrators predetermine which items should be opened, such as applications, folders or server connections, when a user logs in. Centrify DirectControl now also supports FileVault on Mac OS X 10.5 and later. Mobile users whose home directory is on an NFS-mounted share can now authenticate to that share using Active Directory. This market leading AD integration is critical to enterprise customers introducing Macs into their environments.

Finally, as a founding member of the Enterprise Desktop Alliance ("EDA"), Centrify works closely with other companies who provide enterprise solutions for the Mac. With this latest release, Centrify simplifies authentication to home directories on Windows Distributed File Services (DFS) shares by supporting interoperability with Group Logic ExtremeZ-IP, a server software solution that ensures seamless file and printer sharing between Mac desktops and Windows servers. Speaking of the EDA, IBM announced it has joined the EDA. With Centrify helping to inspire the foundation of EDA, it is great to see Big Blue endorsing ours and the EDA's vision of making Macs better interoperate with Windows.

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