on Monday revved
its flagship software suite FileWave X
to version 1.5. Now the company is working on a strategy to allow the product to implement Mac OS X 10.3 (“Panther”) updates.
“FileWave itself is compatible with Panther, but we’re working on solidifying the procedure to let customers use our software to upgrade from Mac OS X 10.2 to 10.3,” Ben Forsyth, chief executive officer at FileWave, told MacCentral. “There’s a lot of work involved as the upgrade is pretty complicated. It will take us a little while to get all the kinks worked out, because we want to make the upgrade process as seamless as possible.”
With the 1.5 update, the administrator defines a model configuration only once at a centralized location, and is then able to deploy the configured software to all relevant client computers. The update is a “big deal” for FileWave, Forsyth said.
“We went through a transition to get to version 1.0 for Mac OS X,” he said. “That version was Carbonized and based on the previous Mac OS 9 product, so it didn’t have all the UNIX permissions and other things we wanted to add. With version 1.5, we now have these UNIX-based technologies integrated into FileWave.”
The main FileWave customers, at least on the Mac side, are those involved in the creative industries (advertising, publishing and media in general), as well as educational customers, especially at the district and university levels, Forsyth said. The true benefits of the software involve mass deployments of software, he added.
“If you have 500 Macs on a network that need critical updates or virus definitions, FileWave can push out updates quickly and efficiently,” Forsyth said. “We focus on enterprise and education customers that have a lot of computers under a central control.”
He said that every month sees more FileWave customers transitioning to Mac OS X, a trend that started in the past 6-8 months. Currently, he estimated that about 50 percent of their clients have moved to Mac OS X and the rest are in mixed environments where Mac OS 9 is the everyday operating system though some people or departments are using Mac OS X.
FileWave offers a tiered site license pricing structure for educational customers based on a per-1,000 clients fee. The commercial license is based on the total number of FileWave clients.
FileWave Inc. also offers another Mac OS X compatible product: Asset Trustee, which gathers assets from each computer on a network and stores them on a central database. It also runs on Mac OS 9.x and Windows.