Help Desk

Computing & Information Services

Managed Software Center (aka Munki) at Reed

What is Munki?

A software package installed on college-owned computers – both academic and administrative – that allows for remote installation of security updates and other software by CIS.

Why is that good?

  • Enables rapid deployment of critical security patches for software on faculty, staff, and other college-owned computers.
  • Safer way for CIS (and users) to update software on college owned computers.
  • Ability to improve consistency of software versions within departments.

What software packages will CIS manage?

Core Software:

  • Munki Tools (Managed Software Center, Core, LaunchD, Reporting, Reed-specific config)
  • KeyClient (integrates with inventory system for support & reporting purposes)

Software frequently requiring critical security updates:

  • Mac OS updates
  • Antivirus
  • Microsoft Office
  • Thunderbird
  • Firefox
  • Safari
  • Chrome
  • Adobe Reader
  • Adobe Flash Player
  • Java

What is the user experience?

When possible, CIS will install security patches in the background, without requiring a logout, restart, or otherwise engaging the user (hence the process will be essentially invisible).

In some cases, updates will require the user to logout or restart their computer.  When this is necessary, a Managed Software Center message will appear.

The user can choose to quit Managed Software Center to postpone.  After a period of time, the software update window will pop up again with the same update.  Once Update is chosen, the user confirms the Logout or Restart.  Cancel can be clicked at this point to back out of the update.

Managed Software Center Logout Required
Emergency Security Patches

In the rare case where there is immediate and severe need to apply a security patch (think aggressive campus-wide virus), the user will not be able to postpone the update past a certain date & time.  A window will show a warning indicating exactly when the security patch will no longer be optional.

 Managed Software Center Install Required

Does this mean you can see into my computer?

No.  Munki allows CIS to update software as outlined above, but does not allow staff to view your screen.

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