FREE – Mobile Device Management (MDM)

MDM1MDM or Mobile Device Management has become increasingly popular over the last few years. I was surprised to find, that when we implemented it in the company I work for we discovered that there actually was a few users without a pin or password on their mobile device (to be expected out of a few thousand users I guess, but still – NO PIN on your phone, REALLY!!!)!?

Anyhow, there are several reasons to dive into this area – AND the good news is that (depending on the size of your setup) you can actually do much for ZERO $ (Free).

Create Policies;

  • Require that users (or family) have a PIN
  • Deploy APPS to phones or tablets
  • Keep track of installed APPS
  • Create geo-fencing – be warned if the device leave a defined area (sadly this does not work well in Denmark as the matching of IP’s to addresses is very limited due to privacy legislation)

You can even choose to implement it in your household to keep track of what apps etc are installed be the kids etc.

So are there great skills required? no not really, perhaps a little in setting it up initially – and there are some minor challenges, especially with the certificate part (which need to maintained/updated yearly), but in general – if you have experience with IT operations it’s more or less a breeze.

To get started here are a few links.

Several free or cheap services exist, to name a few;

The first one “Meraki” I actually tried and is still using (free for up to 100 devices as I recall)
https://account.meraki.com/login/new_account
You can even get a free cloud managed WiFi Access Point if you attend one of their online seminars.
Additionally you can install Windows Clients on Windows PC’s and thus now also have free inventory of your Windows PC’s.
You can see a demo of a related Meraki mobile management pack, it’s not quite the same as the free MDM solution – but it can give you some idea of what is possible.
https://youtu.be/fa95GJZQ0fQ

Another one is Spiceworks, I have not tried their MDM solution – but the “Spiceworks framework” (free IT operations software) in general is quite good and capable.
https://www.spiceworks.com/free-mobile-device-management-mdm-software/