We know that a successful deployment is more than just getting devices in hands. Our solutions help both students and teachers get the most out of their devices they use in their work every day.
In this video, we lay out everything we can do to help your school on its way towards a successful technology deployment, in particular establishing a robust wireless infrastructure including network and WiFi surveys, installation services, structured cabling and switches.
Forking out for new kit for your creative team can often throw up a purchasing dilemma – go for the cheaper upfront costs, or plump for the very best kit that may give better value in the long run?
Using our Creative Kit Configurator, you can pick a setup that’s ideal for the needs of your end users, from powerful Mac workstations to essentials like desktop storage and Wacom graphics tablets, as well as warranties, to help you better manage your budget. Watch our video, then give it a go at the link below!
Patch management is an integral part of application security, so it should be high on your list of priorities when it comes to your Mac estate. IT admins spend hours scouring the web for software updates, but it doesn’t have to be as complex and time consuming as you might think.
Formerly a repetitive manual process, quality device management solutions like Jamf Pro have made it easy for users to ensure their software is up to date and secure. How does it do this? Well, Jamf Pro automatically notifies administrators when third party software updates are released, bypassing the rigmarole of figuring out what needs upgrading and which updates are available. This is especially handy given that so many popular third party applications churn out multiple updates a month.
Figuring out where to take action when new updates are available can also be tricky, as most organisations with thousands of machines and users are likely running different software versions. Identifying potential software vulnerabilities is a must, but thankfully Jamf Pro provides visibility into the software or app version a device is running, as well as the number of devices operating on a specific patch. All the information is compiled in an easy to understand visual, and reports can be downloaded or bookmarked so you can share your findings with colleagues. From there, you can take action as and when you need to, ensuring the security of your Mac environment.
Jamf Pro’s Patch Management interface
If you’re looking to take patch management one step further, Jamf Pro allows IT admins to automate update deployment by utilising policies and scripts. We’d recommend using a mixture of packaged scripts to guarantee a successful rollout with minimal downtime and interference.
How long does it take you to provision a Mac for a new starter? What about rebuilding an existing device that requires different network configurations or software? What if you could cut this process down from hours to seconds – or even to the point where you don’t have to touch the device at all?
If you’re looking to save yourself time when setting up fresh Macs for employees, zero-touch deployment should be a priority – and Apple tools and mobile device management can help you achieve it.
To demonstrate the hassle of manually setting up a new Mac and user profile (which can take up to an hour depending on the amount of software installs required), here’s a simplified example of a typical IT administrator checklist, detailing everything that needs to be done before a device can be deployed into the workplace:
Manual setup of a new user
Create user on directory service, and assign privileges
Create Mail account(s), CRM accounts etc.
Set up IMAP; map Sent, Trash, Drafts folders etc.
Create Mail signature.
Create server shortcuts from IT support, as well as any additional shortcuts.
Manual setup of a new Mac
Turn on the device, and run through all the standard start-up steps (AppleID, TouchID, Apple Pay etc)
Set up Admin user.
Run system software update.
Bind to OD (Open Directory), and/or AD (Active Directory).
Add access to corporate services and security requirements
– Microsoft Office 365.
– Printer drivers for all printers.
– Adobe Creative Cloud.
Set wallpaper and edit dock.
Comparatively, you can use zero-touch deployment to cut down this process from hours to seconds.
What is zero-touch deployment?
Zero-touch deployment is the end result of leveraging a mixture of tools that enable devices to be provisioned, integrated and configured automatically, eliminating almost all of the manual setup process. By the time they’re delivered to desk, devices will have the correct security policies preloaded, be prepped to install the correct system specifications and configured to suit the tasks they’ll be used for, and have the necessary creative applications awaiting installation.
This is achievable by using some simple tools to create:
– Configuration profiles and software packages – effectively a base image.
– Policies against users and user groups, so when someone joins the team they get the same deployment.
So, which Apple tools support zero-touch deployment?
Apple’s Profile Manager simplifies management, streamlining deployment and configuration of Mac computers in your organisation – it can be used as an MDM (mobile device management) solution in its own right, but many organisations use this tool in conjunction with third party MDM solutions to better support larger estates.
It allows admins to configure and roll out settings to Apple devices and users across their network, and quickly set up lots of devices with the apps, settings and documents they need. It also helps organisations enforce password polices, define the kind of networks devices can connect to, disable certain features and deactivate system preferences in macOS. Similarly, devices can be remotely locked or wiped with Profile Manager, handy if staff lose their Mac or iPhone.
Fortunately, before you’ve even invested in a third party management platform, Apple supply some of the tools you’ll need to make hands-off deployment and disk imaging on macOS a success. System Image Utility provides users with the functionality to create and configure three types of network disk image: NetBoot, NetInstall and NetRestore, as well modular images that contain the operating system and allow users to download and install the apps they need.
Remote Desktop is Apple’s open standards-based desktop management software utility; it lets admins remotely control and configure systems, install software, provide assistance to end users, create reports and automate management tasks. You can leverage Remote Desktop to check that all automatic, remote and zero-touch configurations have been implemented successfully, or for ongoing remote management of the devices once they’re deployed.
Using computer lists, administrators can define a group of computers and manage them according to type, physical location, use, and more. From there, you can choose to set up a remote Mac and create a dedicated Task Server to gather information and distribute it with sanctioned admins. The Task Server is always on, and serves as an automated administrator that can install packages and configure client settings without central control from Remote Desktop.
The process of setting up a new user’s Mac can be further simplified by:
Adding a new user to your Mac management tool of choice, integrated with Apple’s Device Enrolment Program (DEP).
Assigning the Mac to the user in the management tool, so that when it’s turned on, it pulls down everything the user requires.
To save even more time, admins even have the option of uploading a list of devices rather than adding them one by one – ideal for larger scale rollouts.
While Apple laid the groundwork for Mac management with Profile Manager and other tools, it’s essential to consider a third party solution such as Jamf Pro if you’re looking to manage your Mac estate on a larger scale. Not only that, but a trusted partner (like Jigsaw24) can help you skip the steep learning curve and handle all the tough technical stuff to ensure your management solution is running at maximum efficiency.
Last month, we looked at how to build an agile, multi-speed IT strategy based on Apple. And while implementing Apple devices into your business is great, introducing new tech and a mixed platform environment to IT teams who may traditionally only be familiar with PCs often calls for a little extra tech support. Luckily, we can provide comprehensive Apple support strategy for business, as we did with Hachette UK.
The publishing group originally wanted to consolidate their existing Mac support contracts into one single support agreement that covered both day to day support and project-based work, including helping them transfer five offices to a new, central premises. “As a shared IT function, we’re always looking to improve support for all our end users, so in line with our consolidation into a single office, we decided to consolidate our Mac support as well,” explained Hachette UK’s Director of IT Support, Andy Cobb.
Onsite support at Hachette UK
We now provide a comprehensive support and repair service for Hachette UK, including onsite engineers to handle the Apple side of their service desk, phone and email support in case of escalations, installation and configuration of new machines, deployment to desk and more. This results in more comprehensive, better value support for Hachette’s Mac users, from onsite engineers embedded in the Hachette team. Our team of engineers are all familiar with the Hachette environment, providing a single point of contact for Hachette’s team, with additional resource available at peak times, and are available for staff cover and at times of high workload. Hachette now receive better second and third line support for Hachette’s team, with a managed repairs service for faulty units as well as strategic advice for key projects.
“The key thing for us was the depth of knowledge that Jigsaw24 showed,” said Andy. “We were impressed by the calibre of people who were involved in the [tender] process and their responses, and they already looked after customers who were in a similar position to us. The final thing that was particularly convincing was that the onsite personnel would be part of our team but also enjoy being part of the Jigsaw24 team, and the advantages that gave them in terms of technical expertise to support our users.”
Find out more about how we helped Hachette UK with their Apple support in the video below…
Comprehensive support at News UK
In addition to Hachette UK, we’ve provided Apple support for a large number of businesses over the years. At News UK, we supported over 1000 Macs and 500 iPad devices, as well as helping develop proof of concept schemes for initiatives such as desktop virtualisation and mobile device management. We provided 24-hour onsite and remote support, responding to any Mac query in under ten minutes. News UK received responsive, reliable support for all their technical queries, and were able to continue refining their workflow and incorporating new technologies without overtaxing their technical resources.
Book an Apple Support Strategy Workshop
If you’re currently reviewing and updating your IT strategy, and it includes Apple, talk to us about an Apple Support Strategy Workshop. You can book a meeting with our Chief Technology Officer to focus on your Apple strategy and how to support it, resulting in a bespoke proposal on areas to support your organisation’s growth and goals.
Our Apple Support Strategy Workshops include a discussion of your Apple experience to date, and best practice in Apple deployment and management. We’ll look at:
– Your current Apple estate.
– Your current in-house support employees and their capabilities.
– Your existing management tools.
– Your existing SLA/escalation processes.
– Any gaps in your support (ie not all devices in a management tool for remote access, or too many new starter config builds).
– Your intentions over the next period of Apple growth within the business; core business initiatives of that growth period (whether large-scale refreshes etc); and much more.
We’re celebrating our 25th year providing products that help everyone from studio managers to graphic designers to video producers stay productive and creative. As part of the festivities, we’re going retro and taking the plunge into a nostalgia pool filled with Zip drives, beige Power Macs, primitive social networks, old school design apps and more!
Creation and innovation can be a tough business, but it’s worth it. A quarter century of hard work has led to countless milestone moments and tech developments. See for yourself how far we’ve come…
– Roger Whittle founds Jigsaw24. The colour orange is never the same again.
– Animation gains a new dimension as classic horror game Alone in the Dark introduces us all to the joys of 3D polygon character animation, traumatising at least one member of the team so badly that they give up gaming forever.
– Neil Papworth wishes Richard Jarvis “Merry Christmas” in the first ever SMS message.
– The PDF is born (this may well be the least cool entry on the list, but the ‘compare document’ feature in the latest version of Acrobat DC is a lifesaver, and the new editing toolkit is properly brilliant).
– The internet is born. Cats everywhere shudder but don’t know why…
– NVIDIA is founded; gamers swear by their high-powered GPUs to this day.
– American telecoms company AT&T run the first ever internet ad banner campaign. A single bead of sweat trickles down the forehead of every person working in the print business.
– Photoshop 3.0 is released and introduces the world to layers.
– Iomega’s Zip drive is released.
– Apple launch their ‘Serious Business Computer’ ad, which we strongly urge you to watch:
– Sony releases the first PlayStation, beginning an epidemic of vitamin D deficiency in children.
– Coca-Cola’s iconic Christmas truck advert airs for the first time. All together now: “Holidays are coming, holidays are coming…”
– The first CSS specification is published.
– Apple encourage us to Think Different for the first time; science responds by cloning Dolly the sheep.
– IBM’s Deep Blue defeats chess champ Garry Kasparov. We know we’re not an IBM outfit, but credit where it’s due.
– Google domain name is registered. We could not have compiled this list without it, so feel compelled to include it.
– Wacom release the first Intuos tablet. There is much rejoicing. Graphic Designer Liana says “I remember getting my first job and being amazed by Wacom. I’d spent all of my time at uni huddled over an 11” MacBook, trying to do everything on the Touchpad, which obviously has nothing on a nice big Wacom.”
– First ever Google Doodle. Bit rubbish, to be honest.
– HDTV is introduced. Everyone becomes picture quality snobs.
– The mighty Nikon D1 becomes the first DSLR to challenge the market supremacy of film cameras.
– Budweiser asks “Wassup?”
– Post-apocalyptic horrors promised during the Y2K Panic fail to materialise.
– Everyone buys a Nokia 3310.
– Sony launches PlayStation 2, the best-selling video game console ever.
– Apple launch iTunes and OS X, ushering us into the modern era of Mac.
– Microsoft remove that Paperclip thing from Office. It is not missed.
– Wikipedia is launched. Students everywhere are elated, and nobody wins an internet debate ever again.
– InDesign becomes the first ever Mac-native desktop publishing tool.
– Gartner calculate that one billion personal computers have been sold since their arrival in the 70s.
– The first ever Creative Suite is released, including the all-new Premiere Pro.
– The Dalsa Origin becomes the first commercially available 4K camera.
– Skype is launched, making video conferencing several thousand times easier.
– Facebook beings its journey to world domination. People Poke each other.
– MySpace arrives, and manages to trick a generation of teenagers into learning HTML by letting you customise your profile.
– iPhone arrives, and promptly shifts 1.4 million units in its first year.
– CS3 arrives, meaning you can finally use Photoshop on a modern Mac without having to go through Rosetta.
– Cadbury rehabilitate Phil Collins’ image with their classic drumming gorilla ad, which none of us can believe is really ten years old.
– Nikon’s D90 is the first DSLR to introduce video recording.
– Artist Shepard Fairey creates the iconic Barack Obama ‘Hope’ poster.
– James Cameron’s Avatar becomes the highest-grossing film of all time.
– Microsoft launches Windows 7, sealing the fate of Vista.
– iPad is released.
– The first commercially available jet pack is launched.
– Adobe introduce Content-Aware tools.
– Wacom introduce the Cintiq 24HD. It weighs as much as a not-so-small child, but we all want one anyway.
– The number of Apple devices sold in this one year is larger than the total number of Macs sold ever. We imagine a lot of people spent this year frantically working out how to make their website responsive.
– Steve Jobs passes away aged 56.
– The final boxed version of Creative Suite, CS6, is released, which we mention only because our marketing team won a prize for their campaign and have been insufferable ever since.
– Jony Ive gets a knighthood; rumour has it he commented witheringly on the maximalist design of the medal.
– The Hobbit is the first movie filmed at 48 fps. Viewers suffer eyestrain.
– The world doesn’t end. In your face, Mayans.
– Kenneth Grange scores a knighthood, joining Ive as Britain’s most decorated designer.
– Adobe launch Creative Cloud.
– Film Gravity uses the most complex lighting setup in film history, using a custom-built light box with 1.8 million high-powered LEDs to film zero-gravity footage.
– YouTube announce that they receive 100 hours of new video content per minute.
– Windows 10 is launched, if you’re into that sort of thing.
– Mobile browsing overtakes desktop for the first time.
– Harambe the gorilla dies and is memorialised forever in meme form.
– Carter Wilkinson makes a plea to Wendy’s for a year’s worth of free chicken nuggets. It becomes the most retweeted tweet of all time, currently standing at over 3.5 million.
Making sure your Mac end users are all on the same operating system is important. Not only does it mean everyone has access to the same great new macOS features, but some software only runs on certain versions of the OS, so what you don’t want is different people with different software versions, making files incompatable.
And while brand new Mac computers will ship with the latest version of macOS pre-installed, if you’re using older machines, and want the latest iteration of Apple’s operating system, you’ll need to upgrade. So here’s a quick step-by-step guide to upgrading individual Macs to macOS High Sierra, if they’re not already managed in a device management solution.
macOS High Sierra requirements
First thing’s first, you’ll need to know whether your Mac can actually support the latest version of macOS (but don’t worry, we can tell you this!), as not all older hardware and operating systems do. Apple advise you’ll also need at least 2GB of RAM and 14.3GB of free storage space to install macOS Sierra, although we would recommend much higher than 2GB RAM – at least 4GB but ideally 8GB.
To find out what model your Mac is, plus your memory, storage, and version of OS X, choose About This Mac from the Apple menu (). Supported Mac models are iMac (Late 2009 or newer), MacBook (Late 2009 or newer), MacBook Pro (Mid 2010 or newer), MacBook Air (Late 2010 or newer), Mac mini (Mid 2010 or newer) and Mac Pro (Mid 2010 or newer).
Installing macOS High Sierra
You can download the new upgrade from the High Sierra page on the Mac App Store. Here’s what you need to do:
1. Back up your Mac. Whether it’s to Time Machine, a NAS, or enterprise cloud storage, backing up your machine before you install any upgrades is always good practice.
2. Open the Mac App Store app on your Mac from the Applications folder, Launchpad, Spotlight or the Apple menu ().
3. If macOS High Sierra doesn’t show automatically, search the App Store for macOS High Sierra, or go directly to the macOS High Sierra page.
4. Click the Download button on the macOS High Sierra page. A file named Install macOS High Sierra downloads to your Applications folder or Launchpad, depending on what your current OS is.
5. After it’s finished downloading, Install macOS High Sierra opens automatically. Click Continue and follow the onscreen instructions.
Upgrading managed devices
If you’re already using a device management solution, you’re already applying settings, permissions and packages to new devices as soon as they’re turned on. That means the minute a new user logs in, their device starts loading the software you want them to have, and you have clear visibility over any changes. You’re then able to roll out operating system updates to all your end users’ devices at once at a strategic time (after you’ve tested them for compatibility with your core business software, of course) without even touching them.
Want to know more about Apple and managed devices? Give us a call on 03332 409 306, email sales@Jigsaw24.com or pop your details in the form below. For all the latest news and reviews, follow us on Twitter @WeAreJigsaw24 and ‘like’ us on Facebook.
Acronis are offering 25 Access Connect licences for the price of 10, 50 for the price of 25 and 100 for the price of 50 for new customers, so if you’re looking to buy, now’s the time.
Is Acronis Access Connect right for your organisation?
Acronis Access Connect allows for seamless Mac to Windows integration with remote file access. It’s an excellent fit for organisations of all sizes, particularly where there are a number of Macs that need the same file and print services as Windows machines. While Macs are commonplace in any industry these days, the benefits of integration are greatest when users are working with a large number of files or involved with content production, such as artists, designers, video producers, students and writers. Access Connect will come in handy if you’re a part of any of the following sectors:
– Advertising and public relations
– Consumer products
– Professional services
– Publishing and printing
– Video production
– Engineering and architectural services
– Creative services groups within enterprises
– Digital media
– Scientific and research institutions
Acronis Access Connect is ideal for IT managers and systems admins, Mac desktop managers, Windows server managers, creative services and production managers.
Access Connect 25
Client server with 1 year of support (price per server) and a maximum of 25 supported devices allowed – Was £1295, discounted to £995.
Use the promo code AConn25.
Access Connect 50
Client server with 1 year of support (price per server) and a maximum of 50 supported devices allowed – Was £1895, discounted to £1295.
Use the promo code AConn50.
Access Connect 100
Client server with 1 year of support (price per server) and a maximum of 100 supported devices allowed – Was £2795, discounted to £1895.
Use the promo code AConn100.
The Ts and Cs
Promotion is only valid for new Access Connect customers only. This excludes co-term, which is for additional licence purchases. This cannot be combined with another promotion and cannot be combined with deal registration. Maintenance, renewals, and upgrades are excluded, and the promotion is only applicable in the United Kingdom and Ireland. The promotion expires on 31st March 2017.
While Mac has long been the go-to choice for creatives using resource-draining editing software or demanding design programs, Mac has also proven itself as a brilliant option for business and beyond. When it comes to Mac for desktop, there are three simple choices: the all-in-one iMac, the powerful, professional Mac Pro, and the compact and efficient Mac mini.
In the desktop arena, Mac faces fierce competition from a vast array of PCs all clamouring to sit atop your desk. And packing in a huge assortment of different processors, graphics cards and monitors, the desktop world can be a perplexing and intimidating place – particularly for first time buyers. With Apple’s Mac desktop range, you know what you’re getting – a familiar UI, trusty hardware and an assortment of essential creative software and applications at your fingertips.
Take a look at this essential buyers’ guide so you know exactly what you’re in for when you go with Apple and their Mac desktops.
With its big, bright Retina display now available in 5K on the 27″ model and 4K on its 21.5″ sister, and powerful internals, the iMac really is the ultimate all-in-one desktop. It’s long been popular among image specialists and designers, and has caught the attention of videographers thanks to its built-in 4K editing capabilities. But outside of the creative world, it’s also found favour with business users, education institutions, and home users, thanks to its multi-purpose ethos.
The iMac is both sleek in design and space-efficient, with all the internals built into its gorgeous, slim screen, meaning no cables and no mess. It even comes equipped with an Apple Magic Keyboard, Magic Mouse 2 or Magic Trackpad 2 to boot.
The creative powerhouse and Apple’s workhorse, the Mac Pro is the only way to go if you’re looking for optimum performance, user-specific customisability and the ultimate editing hub. With the potential to house a colossal 64GB of RAM and up to 12 individual processors, Mac Pro will deliver at every turn.
There’s a reason Mac Pro is considered the industry-standard – it’s fast and reliable, perfectly suited for editing audio and video in your favourite applications like Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro X and Da Vinci Resolve. The power of the Mac Pro is contained within its discreet yet stylish cylindrical casing and is only 25cm high and 5kg in weight – perfect for maintaining a clear, open workspace. Sporting all the ports you could ever need, Mac Pro allows you to connect all of your essential peripherals, right at home in a large creative suite complete with multiple monitors and lots of external storage. If you want to make use of Mac Pro’s customisability and design a desktop computer suited specifically to you, we recommend giving our Mac Pro Configurator a look.
– Up to 2.7GHz 12-core processor.
– Up to 1TB PCIe-based flash storage.
– Up to 64GB (4x16GB) memory.
– Up to Dual AMD FirePro D700 with 6GB GDDR5 VRAM.
The light and compact Mac mini offers an impressive amount of power for such a small computer. With 3GHz of muscle and up to 16GB of RAM, Mac mini coasts through those essential office tasks and performs well under processing pressure. While it may not match the sheer performance of the Mac Pro or iMac, it’s perfect for streaming your content around an office or in a meeting with AirPlay. For all of your admin, server, or streaming-based needs, look no further than the Mac mini.
If you’re deploying Mac in your business, but your tech team are more Windows whizzes than Mac management maestros, it always helps to get a bit of guidance on how the new system differs, in the form of technical training.
So we’ve developed our macOS Core Essentials training course just for that. Run by our friendly systems engineers, who have bags of real world experience managing Mac in business environments of various size, it’s the ideal way to make sure your tech team understand the core functionality behind macOS, how best to manage it, and how it compares to similar Windows environments, so your business can get the most from your system.
Who’s it for? Our macOS Core Essentials training is for helpdesk teams, technical co-ordinators, service techs, ICT technicians etc who are deploying macOS for the first time. It’s designed to help technicians who are familiar with Windows systems to master the key functionality of macOS and understand Apple’s technical terminology where it differs from Windows standards.
What does it include? The training will include demos of Apple hardware and software, plus a deep dive look at supporting macOS devices delivered by a senior systems engineer from Jigsaw24. If you’re managing your Apple devices using Jamf Pro, we can also provide an overview of how these will work to manage your devices, and what you need to know to get devices profiled, managed and working with your other internal systems.
As well as being accredited by Apple, our engineers have practical experience designing and supporting mixed platform enterprise environments, so can advise on how to address real world issues you’re likely to find in your environment. You can see the full course curriculum here.
Who’s running it? It’s all delivered by our senior systems engineers. As well as being accredited by Apple, our engineers have practical experience designing and supporting mixed platform enterprise environments, so can advise on how to address real world issues you’re likely to find in your environment.
Where does it happen? This is an all day session, and can be held at our Nottingham or London offices (where we’ll provide lunch), or at your place (in which case you’ll need to bring sandwiches).
How much does it cost? £350 per person (minimum booking three people).
– Want to book your team onto our macOS Core Essentials training course? Get in touch on the details below…