Before I spend a lot of money. What are the main benefits of using Centrify over the Mac's built in ability to bind to Active Directory? After many years of using the "magic triangle" and defining what can be done and cannot. I cannot see what the big difference is with Centrify. Is it more geared towards large schemas?

Please can someone shed some light?

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    Could you explain a bit about what this "magic triangle" is and what the actual problem is? (For example - are you managing 10 Macs, 1000 or 10,000 - the choices and costs are wildly different for each.) Why are your only options native OS X and Centrify? OS X server and many other products and services exist in this space. – bmike Jan 8 '15 at 13:59

There are a few major differences worth highlighting:

  • The Apple solution is probably ok for a small environment but does not scale well in larger more complex environments (e.g. Apple does not support multi-domain trusts).
  • The Apple AD plugin is more complicated to setup and definitely has some limitations. For example, see this article here which talks about some of the challenges with deploying the Apple solution.
  • The Centrify solution includes tools for doing mass deployment and management which will help with larger installations.
  • Of course, Centrify supports policy management via Group Policy if that is something that you care about. Handy for things like pushing out role-based rules for both Macs and Mac users.
  • Plus Centrify supports Smart Card-based login and has new cloud-based technology for extending AD-based management to mobile Macs and other devices. This includes self-service tools for password management, remote wipe/lock etc.

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