iAnywhere Tool Improves Management, Security of Mobile Devices

The latest version of Afaria offers increased device support, better Systems Management Server 2003 integration and improved patch deployment capabilities.

Sybase Inc. subsidiary iAnywhere Solutions Inc. in late June will launch a new version of its Afaria mobile device management and security software that offers increased device support, better integration with Microsoft Corp.s Systems Management Server 2003 and improved patch deployment capabilities.

Afaria, used predominantly for managing and securing PCs, has increasingly added support for handhelds and smart phones in response to an increase in enterprise deployments.

"What weve seen in the last few years is increasing amounts of handheld devices as actual enterprise computing devices," said Joe Owen, vice president of engineering for iAnywhere, in Dublin, Calif.

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The latest version of Afaria is more tightly integrated with SMS 2003, allowing enterprises to manage PCs and mobile devices from a single console. The integration extends SMS 2003 support not only to devices based on Microsofts Windows Mobile operating system but also to units from Symbian Ltd. and PalmOne Inc. and to Research In Motion Ltd.s BlackBerry devices.

In addition, Afaria has extended support for the latest iterations of converged wireless voice and data devices, including upcoming devices based on Windows Mobile 5.0. But even with the increased support, iAnywhere officials acknowledged that new devices with different configuration settings often spring up between Afaria upgrades. To help IT managers support these new devices, iAnywhere has added new device configuration capabilities to Afaria.

The latest version of Afaria also improves patch management capabilities.

These new capabilities have helped convenience store chain Kwik Trip Inc. comply with security policies mandated under Visa USA Inc.s Cardholder Information Security Program, said Ron Sissel, manager of retail automation for Kwik Trip, in La Crosse, Wis.

"Now we can set it up, pick this patch to go down, at this period of time, to this many stores, and do it in a way that it doesnt eat up bandwidth," said Sissel.

Pricing for Afaria includes an enterprise server, which starts at $5,000, and a client agent for each device, which ranges from $30 to $120.

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