PowerQuest give IT managers power over PCs

In line with a growing industry trend towards packaging multiple technologies as complete solutions, PowerQuest on Monday released its PowerDeploy Suite.

The software package delivers the tools to manage the entire lifecycle of PCs within medium- to large-scale business environments, according to Rajeev Danank, the product line manager for Orem, Utah-based PowerQuest.

Utilizing the PowerDeploy Suite will help companies reduce both the expense and anxiety of managing large PC deployments, particularly as companies complete PC client upgrades to Windows 2000, or begin upgrade plans for the upcoming Windows XP, Danank said.

From a Windows-based management interface that can be accessed securely through any Internet browser, PowerQuest's PowerDeploy Suite makes it possible for a single IT administrator to deploy, upgrade or remove applications and operating systems of up to thousands of mixed vendor PCs, Danank explained.

PC system images, user preferences, and stored data can also be migrated in their entirety to other PCs using PowerDeploy. This helps in the creation of separate PC workgroups, and during hardware upgrades, Danank said.

As PCs are retired, PowerDeploy offers a hard drive deletion system that totally clears the drive of all data, protecting a business's confidential intellectual property. The deletion system leaves the hard drives ready for re-use, making it easier for companies to donate used computers instead of having to destroy the hard drives and recycle the components, Danank said.

"Not even a data retrieval company could find data on the drive after its erased," said Danank. PowerDeploy's deleting technology is in compliance with three U.S. Government standards for overwriting data, according to company officials.

PowerDeploy's PC management, image deployment, system migration, and system retirement capabilities result from a combination of the company's ControlCenter, DeplyCenter, Migration Manger, and DataGone products.

While each of the individual products are available separately, delivering a comprehensive software solution like PowerDeploy answers an immediate need being felt by companies who are currently managing too many PCs with too few skilled IT personnel, Danank said.

The PowerDeploy Suite also gives IT managers a complete solution that can be installed all at once, instead of having to install separate products. Delivering ease of use through a solution-oriented approach such as the PowerDeploy Suite is a growing trend among technology vendors, which believe delivering services is paramount to selling stand-alone products.

"The solutions approach is changing PowerQuest in to more of a service-oriented company," Danank said.

Patented technology within PowerDeploy called SmartSector technology may also help in optimizing a PC's operating system, Danank said. SmartSector technology uses what Danank called "sector level imaging," in which data is laid out on the hard drive in an order that makes data retrieval times faster.

Pricing for PowerDeploy varies depending upon the number of PCs being managed. A typical PC deployment of 100 clients would normally cost a company about US$1,980, according to PowerQuest officials.

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