Last week, Lenovo announced version 2.0 of its Secure Managed Client (SMC), a storage-based fleet management solution. The latest version of SMC offers IT managers increased security and new manageability tools, while continuing to provide end users with a familiar desktop experience.
Lenovo's SMC 2.0 consists of SMC-supported Lenovo ThinkCentre desktop PCs with Intel vPro Technology, a Lenovo co-developed software stack and centralized Lenovo Storage Array Appliance. This remote storage-based technology offers the benefits of an alternative client solution--centralized image and user provisioning, secure data storage, redundancy, and single image capability, for example--without sacrificing the end-user desktop experience by delivering full graphics and audio performance and support for ThinkCentre peripherals.
Lenovo says the SMC 2.0 builds on the capabilities of SMC 1.2 in several critical areas, including:
- Image Support--Lenovo claims an SMC 2.0-enabled PC will return to its original state each time a user turns off the PC. During this process, SMC 2.0 resets the image on the array to "pristine states" by removing viruses or malware and temporarily saved information.
- Enhanced Redundancy--In addition to the asynchronous redundancy available in SMC 1.2, Lenovo says SMC 2.0 provides improved data access by creating duplicate connection managers, enabling end users to continue logging into their desktop PCs even if the original client connection to the SMC Connection Manager in the data center is not available. SMC 2.0 also allows for array synchronous replication, a process that instantly backs up user data on separate, redundant storage arrays as soon as user data is saved.
- Storage Array Auto Detection--SMC 2.0's Auto Detect console automatically detects a presence on the network, minimizing the need to notify the administrator that a new array has been installed.
In addition, Lenovo says ThinkCentre desktop PCs operating on the SMC 2.0 network can support additional PC add-in cards, such as quad monitor graphics, providing users with expandability options. The SMC 2.0 hypervisor also automatically delivers higher quality service for VoIP applications.
"Our customers are asking us for an alternative desktop computing solution that is simple to use, easy to deploy, and will deliver a tangible return on investment," says Peter Schrady, vice president and general manager of software and peripherals at Lenovo. "We have designed SMC 2.0 to reduce the cost and complexity of desktop virtualization. And best of all, there is no discernible difference to the end user as they work directly from a familiar, full functioning ThinkCentre desktop PC."
The SMC 2.0 solution will be available starting in February 2010 in the US.