Microsoft Intune Inventory Collection Comparisons

IT Asset Management (Cloud)

Microsoft Intune is a cloud-based enterprise management tool that helps organizations manage mobile devices, corporate data, and applications.

Intune lets organizations manage their devices directly or using System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM) if available and connected.

With its focus on cloud applications and mobile devices, organizations that are adopting Office 365 are commonly adopting Intune too. The following table compares Microsoft Intune against other inventory collection methods.

Table 1. Comparisons between Microsoft Intune and other inventory collection methods
Functionality Description
System Center Configuration (SCCM)

SCCM is a software management suite provided by Microsoft that allows organizations to manage Windows-based computers.

SCCM is well established in most organizations and is used for inventory, remote control, patch management, operating system deployment, network protection, and a range of other capabilities.

FlexNet Beacon

A connection is required to be configured for a single source for inventory collection. The inventory beacon is responsible for uploading the data to the central operations databases of IT Asset Management.

The software to install on an inventory beacon server is downloaded from IT Asset Management and called FlexNet Beacon. After installation, you use the FlexNet Beacon software to download and install a configuration file that has been customized for this inventory beacon (and this configuration file should not be shared between inventory beacons).

Inventory Data Data is collected from Microsoft Intune and imported into IT Asset Management, giving you visibility of managed devices, user data, and managed and unmanaged applications installed on corporate-owned devices in your Microsoft Intune estate. For more information, see What data is retrieved in the Inventory Adapters and Connectors Reference.
Cloud Variant

Intune is not equivalent to SCCM. For example, Intune and SCCM support hardware and software inventory, but Intune does not expose all this data for export, and it does not support monitoring/metering.

This is critically important for Flexera customers who rely on SCCM, because if Intune is targeted as a replacement, there will be a complex change to manage existing integrations, and a reduction in overall data quality and capability.

FlexNet Inventory Agent
You may elect to deploy the FlexNet Inventory Agent whose inventory and discovery capabilities are specifically aligned for Flexera technologies, and capabilities are well-known and documented. The FlexNet Inventory Agent:
  • Is likely known or approved (IT Asset Management is the business SAM tool)
  • Provides seamless integration
  • May require an additional beacon.

IT Asset Management (Cloud)