Comparing Microsoft MDT and Microsoft Intune: The Future of Application Deployment

Jan 15, 2024

As organizations continue to expand their technology footprint, application deployment and management become increasingly complex and time-consuming. In response to these challenges, Microsoft offers two key tools: Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT) and Microsoft Intune. In this blog post, we will compare these two tools and examine the direction that Microsoft is taking with application deployment over the next few years.

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit (MDT)

MDT is a free, flexible, and extensible tool designed for automating the deployment of Windows operating systems and applications. With MDT, IT administrators can customize deployment processes, create custom deployment scripts, and automate repetitive tasks. MDT supports multiple deployment scenarios, including bare-metal deployment, refreshing existing computers, and deploying virtual machines.

MDT is a powerful tool for organisations that require complete control over the deployment process. It offers a high level of flexibility and customisation, allowing IT administrators to tailor deployment processes to the specific needs of the organization. Additionally, MDT can be integrated with other Microsoft tools, such as System Centre Configuration Manager (SCCM), to enhance its functionality.

However, MDT does have some limitations. For example, it is primarily designed for on-premises deployment, making it less suitable for organisations that have adopted a cloud-first approach. Additionally, while MDT can be used to deploy applications, it does not provide the same level of application management functionality as Microsoft Intune.

Microsoft Intune

Microsoft Intune is a cloud-based device management solution designed for managing Windows, iOS, and Android devices. With Intune, IT administrators can deploy and manage applications, enforce compliance policies, and protect corporate data. Intune offers a range of deployment options, including app deployment, Windows Autopilot, and mobile device management (MDM).

Intune is a powerful tool for organisations that require a cloud-based approach to application deployment. It offers a high level of scalability and flexibility, allowing IT administrators to manage devices from a central location. Additionally, Intune provides robust security features, such as conditional access policies and app protection policies, which help organisations protect their corporate data.

However, Intune also has some limitations. For example, it does not offer the same level of customisation and flexibility as MDT. Additionally, while Intune is designed for managing devices, it may not be suitable for organisations that need to manage a large number of servers.

Future Direction of Application Deployment

Looking to the future, Microsoft is expected to continue to invest in both MDT and Intune, as well as other deployment tools such as SCCM. However, there are some indications that Microsoft may be shifting towards a cloud-first approach to application deployment.

For example, Microsoft has announced that it will be retiring System Centre Configuration Manager (SCCM) in favour of a cloud-based solution called Microsoft Endpoint Manager. This move reflects Microsoft's focus on cloud-based deployment and management solutions. Additionally, Microsoft has recently introduced a new tool called Windows Package Manager, which allows developers to create and manage application packages using a command-line interface.

As organisations continue to adopt a cloud-first approach, it's likely that Microsoft will continue to invest in cloud-based deployment tools such as Intune. However, there will also be a need for on-premises deployment tools such as MDT for organisations that require complete control over the deployment process.

Moving Your Business To A Cloud-First Approach 

There are countless benefits to moving your business to the cloud (something we do a lot here at Lyon Tech!), but it's important to note that this needs to be done carefully, and with thought. For example, making sure that your cloud accounts are protected from cyber attacks. If you are looking for support from expert IT professionals about these tools or other cloud services, then do not hesitate in dropping us a message!