Dell to Acquire Systems Management Appliance Vendor Kace

By Jessica Davis  |  Print this article Print

Dell's move to acquire systems management appliance vendor Kace gives the company inroads into the small and midsized business market and the government, education and health care markets for systems management, the companies said. Kace had been a Dell PartnerDirect channel partner and had incorporated Dell's OpenManage systems management into its appliances last year.

Technology vendor Dell has announced plans to acquire Kace, a systems management appliance company that targets its solutions at small and midsized businesses, plus government, education and health care organizations.

The acquisition is designed to better serve customers in those markets who have said they are looking for tools to help them manage their technology environments.

"We talk directly to thousands of these customers, and they tell us they need systems-management tools geared for their environment," said Steve Felice, president of Dell Consumer and Small and Medium Business, in a prepared statement.

"The KBOX family of appliances is highly capable, quick to deploy, simple to use and provides a rapid return on investment, exactly the sort of best-value solutions we’re delivering to customers."

Dell says that Kace’s solutions KBOX systems management and deployment appliances offer the following functions:

  • Device discovery, system inventory and asset management;
  • Configuration management, including operating system deployment, power management software distribution, application virtualization and scripting;
  • System deployment, imaging and Windows 7 migration;
  • Endpoint security via patch management, security-policy enforcement and vulnerability scanning; and
  • Service management through integrated service desk, user portal and alerting.

Dell and Kace executives told reporters during a press conference that Kace's technologies will be offered to companies looking for on-premises solutions and not incorporated into Dell's hosted managed services offerings. Paulette Altmaier, a Dell vice president for consumer and small business, said that Dell's existing offerings provide cloud-based services of the applicable technologies for end customers who prefer a pay-as-you-go model.

Dell says appliances such as the ones offered by Kace are ideally suited for midsized operations that typically are staffed by IT generalists. KBOX appliances support Windows, Mac and Linux, and also provide integrated application virtualization. They are available as both physical and virtual appliances, directly from Dell or through Dell and KACE partners, Dell said.

In November 2009, Kace said that its newest KBOX systems featured Dell hardware—Dell PowerEdge Servers—and Kace also was certified last year in Dell’s PartnerDirect channel partner program. Kace had also integrated Dell OpenManage systems management into its KBOX appliances.

Terms of Dell’s acquisition of Kace were not disclosed. Dell said the deal has been signed and is expected to close in the current quarter.

Jessica Davis covers the channel for eWeek and Channel Insider. Her technology journalism career began well before anyone heard of the World Wide Web and has included stints at Infoworld, Electronic News/EDN, and the Philadelphia Business Journal. Her work has also appeared on CNN and Forbes.com. She has covered hardware, software and networking, as well as the business side of technology. She has won several journalism awards, including a national ASBPE award for best staff-written column, and was named Marketing Computers hardest working tech journalist on their inaugural list of top tech journalists. Jessica can be reached at jessica.davis@ziffdavisenterprise.com