The Casper Suite: OS X Mavericks support on day one

OS X Mavericks represents a major update to Apple's OS X operating system, and many users anxiously anticipated its release. Many end users update Mac the same day a new operating system becomes available, and Apple traditionally ships all new hardware with the latest operating system. These factors combine to produce a very fast adoption rate for new Apple operating systems, and IT administrators must be ready to support and secure these devices in their organizations.

The Casper Suite features same-day support for OS X Mavericks, meaning that IT administrators have the ability to ensure that Mac devices remain secured and supported even if users upgrade on day one. Additionally, the Casper Suite takes advantage of new FileVault 2 and configuration profile management capabilities, enabling administrators to begin using these expanded capabilities immediately.

Casper Suite 9.2 overview

OS X Mavericks and Casper Suite 9: FileVault 2

OS X Mavericks and Casper Suite 9: In-place upgrades

OS X Mavericks and Casper Suite 9: Same-day support

FileVault 2: manage Appleā€™s native disk encryption tool

Enterprise organizations today support a mobile workforce, enabling end users to access organizational data from within and outside the organizational network. As both the technology and the access to technology leave the organization's facilities, IT administrators need solutions to ensure data is secure.

Typically, this data security is provided through a full disk encryption solution, used to encrypt the data that is stored on the device. A full disk encryption solution provides a password—called the encryption key—and secures the data that resides on the device's storage. Without the encryption key, unauthorized individuals are unable to read any data from the drive.

Beginning with Mac OS X 10.7, Apple built a full disk encryption solution called FileVault 2 into the operating system. FileVault 2 provides end users the capability to enable and disable FileVault 2 encryption on their devices. In order to provide IT administrators similar methods for ensuring security on a large-scale through native tools, the Casper Suite has the ability to enable, disable, report on status, and escrow recovery keys to a central location. With OS X Mavericks, the Casper Suite extends these methods, providing IT administrators new capabilities to remediate issues with the recovery key, regularly change recovery keys, ensure appropriate users have FileVault 2 access, and require the use of FileVault 2 disk encryption.

How the Casper Suite leverages new FileVault 2 capabilities in OS X Mavericks:

  • New ways to report on the state of machines and the keys they are using
  • Advanced ways to swap recovery keys
  • Filevault key redirection
  • Report on FileVault 2 security posture
  • Leverage new fdesetup verbs

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Apple OS updates: update to OS X Mavericks immediately

As Apple continues to innovate their operating systems, adding more features for both end users and the enterprise, the demand for these releases grows. End users are requesting the new operating systems from their IT management, or simply upgrading in their own time. As end users gain more administrative power, IT administrators are tasked with supporting the new operating systems as soon as they can. To do this, they need a management tool that not only supports the new operating system, but also provides an authorized method for end users to upgrade to the new operating system on the day it’s released.

Migrating an entire organization's computing environment to a new operating system platform is a large task for any IT administrator. Administrators must define workflows for not only upgrading devices that are already deployed to their end users, but also for installing custom versions of OS X Mavericks to newly purchased devices.

Historically, we have helped administrators by offering support for upgrading in bare-metal re-imaging workflows both with and without the Recovery HD, as well as user initiated upgrades. With version 9.2 of the Casper Suite, we support existing workflows, and introduce new workflows to support in-place OS upgrades. Specifically, this new version of the Casper Suite enables in-place upgrade workflows, allowing an administrator to upgrade any existing OS X device without booting to an external volume, as traditionally seen with a NetBoot environment.

How the Casper Suite simplifies Apple OS updates:

  • Self Service-initiated upgrades
  • Simplified administrator workflows
  • Support utilizing the Mac OS X directly from the Mac App store
  • Leverage native technology in InstallESD.dmg to support in-place upgrades
  • Support existing upgrade workflows

OS X Mavericks: support for all new configuration profiles

As Apple continues to evolve the features of the OS X operating system, additional management capabilities are introduced that enable administrators to configure the new features. As part of this evolution, Apple provides new methods to configure OS X devices from a central location in an enterprise environment.

With the release of OS X Mavericks, Apple has introduced new settings management capabilities through configuration profiles. The Casper Suite enables administrators to deploy data security settings, device restrictions, and set all of the new configuration profiles available to configure any Mac running OS X Mavericks.

How the Casper Suite utilizes new OS X Mavericks configuration profiles:

  • Leverage all new configuration profiles available in OS X Mavericks
  • Ensure that currently available configuration profiles function appropriately
  • Provide reporting and search functionality around defined configuration profiles
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