Unlike the Vendor Patch Module for Software Vulnerability Manager, there really are no competitive offerings when it comes to what AdminStudio provides with its Package Feed Module. However, what you get and for how many applications is nonetheless highly relevant, so in this article, I’ll go into the ways you can count them so you can appreciate what you truly get in terms of coverage when considering the AdminStudio Package Feed Module.
Note: The numbers used below fluctuate and grow over time, see "updates" at the bottom for a quick history of this growth. Below still explains the general logic of how you can count the number of applications covered, but the Package Feed Module page now provides a running count and export ability, so the below data will not continue to be manually updated.
When speaking to the number of installers covered, our current statement is that we have “nearly 4500” which as of February 18th, 2022 equates to 4,457 and growing. Just how many products does that address is a more valuable question; those 4,457 patches apply to 1,425 unique products across 628 unique manufacturers.
We've not taken an all-or-nothing approach to the data we provide. That is to say, all the details we'd like to provide may not be available for a myriad of reasons summarized below.
Sometimes the vendor setup file isn't publicly available for download. In some cases, vendors don't make their installers available for download without logging in as a paying customer. In such cases, a traditional patch catalog would omit the information and disqualify it as eligible for inclusion. The Package Feed Module currently provides integrated download support for 3,766 of the installers being tracked.
Sometimes the vendor doesn't provide silent command line support. Vendors don’t always provide support for (and sometimes go out of their way to discourage) the silent installation of their applications. In such cases, the awareness the update exists, the ability to easily obtain it, and how to detect when it's installed are still valuable, so we provide such. However, it may be necessary to use Repackager in order to achieve a silent, customized deployment. Package Feed Module currently provides command-line installation details for 3,312 of the installers being tracked.
Sometimes we don’t have sufficient detection logic to offer. In some cases, we may not have a reliable file on which to base applicability rules you can pass as valuable data to systems like Configuration Manager (SCCM). Package Feed Module currently provides detection information (files or MSI package codes) for 2,821 of the installers being tracked.
Now that we’ve established what we have, let’s talk about ways one can count it.
One title can have a lot of installers. For example, Firefox has dozens of languages and variants that we cover, which essentially patch “Firefox." Therefore, the number of installers applies to a much smaller number of products.
Some vendors provide a different installer for 32- and 64-bit architectures. And some provide distinct installers both based on language and architecture. For example, Autodesk Inventor has more than 50 different installers for this reason.
We’ve also got over 250 Mac installers (267 at the moment). For Mac, the value is all in the awareness of what has been released and the ability to easily obtain it as the challenge of determining silent command line parameters is not applicable to Mac systems. Don’t forget AdminStudio allows you to easily publish these Mac packages directly to Jamf Pro (formerly Casper) for deployment.
The number of installers Package Feed Module covers is impressive, but it's not the most important thing. What's likely of more significance is identifying just what applications we cover that you really care about. We’ve focused on enterprise applications to maximize value and aren't just creating patches for everything under the sun to impress you with big numbers. We’ve set up a place where those interested in the AdminStudio Package Feed Module may verify specific application coverage here.
In AdminStudio 2019 R2 and later, you’ll find a restricted view of the Package Feed Module is available for you to try out. You can also see it in action by checking out the demo in our recorded webinar presentation or in this very short video that aims to provide a briefer version of the same.
For hundreds of the Windows Installer-based patches in the catalog, we now also provide a custom installation wizard so you may make application-specific choices that result in the generation of a transform file to handle your selections. For more on this, please see this article and video.
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