Google built an MSI Installer to let IT administrators easily deploy the Chrome browser on computers across a business, thus laying the foundation for Chrome OS in the enterprise.
Google Dec. 15 made its Chrome Web browser enterprise friendly, launching a
tool that lets IT administrators provision the software to Windows, Mac and
Linux computers across a business.
Chrome has more than 120 million users who have downloaded the browser to their
personal computers and laptops. Yet Chrome has been largely limited to consumer
use for a couple reasons.
First, some admins lock down their corporate desktops and laptops to prevent
workers from installing unauthorized Web apps. Second, Google offered no way to
deploy the browser across an enterprise the way Microsoft Internet Explorer and
Mozilla Firefox are provisioned.
To fill that hole, Google has crafted an MSI Installer
that lets admins install Chrome for all of their
business users using software-deployment tools from BMC Software, Computer
Associates and others.
Google also added support for managed group policy to allow admins to
customize Chrome settings to manage security and privacy.
Support for the new Chrome admin features is available to Google Apps for
Business admins by phone and e-mail. Non-Google Apps admins interested in
deploying Chrome are able to view documentation here
Rajen Sheth, group product manager for Google Enterprise, told eWEEK
that Chrome will give companies
the security they need to run HTML5 Web applications without requiring expensive
software licenses or new hardware.
"As HTML5 takes more and more hold amongst the developer community,
more and more enterprise applications will leverage [its] power," Sheth says.
"We think that Chrome is an ideal solution because of that. Businesses now
have options for browsing the modern Web."
Google has another reason for creating a Chrome-deployment tool: Google is
polishing Chrome Operating System, the support system for the Chrome browser
and Web apps.
The company launched
a pilot program for Chrome OS last week, but
Samsung and Acer are expected
to release official machines in mid-2011.
Getting Chrome into enterprise now could very well will help businesses run
their important Web applications in the browser, setting Google and its
computer maker partners up nicely for moving Chrome OS machines into businesses
when they're ready to launch.
These are all important steps as Google seeks to provide
that cloud-based operating system alternative to
Microsoft Windows and Apple Mac machines in the future.