SolarWinds deepens Microsoft collaboration around Microsoft 365

SolarWinds partners using both N-Central and RMM will be able to deliver monitoring through Microsoft Intune, with true multi-tenanted capabilities and policy consistency not available to MSPs just by using Microsoft 365 alone.

Mav Turner, VP, Product Management at SolarWinds

Today, SolarWinds has announced an extension of their collaboration with Microsoft that integrates Microsoft 365 capabilities more deeply with SolarWinds’  N-central and RMM platforms. Specifically, the new collaboration provides monitoring of devices managed by Microsoft Intune from within the SolarWinds dashboard, giving MSPs a single device view that ends partners having to flip through separate customer instances, and which will provide consistency around Intune in all instances.

“We have been a partner of Microsoft in multiple domains, and this announcement expands that partnership,” said Mav Turner, VP, Product Management at SolarWinds. “Microsoft wanted to do more together with us, especially in the MSP space. This extension is more a reaction of their interest in going deeper and providing stronger capabilities. They really opened up their product teams to make sure we are well aligned.”

Turner indicated that SolarWinds and Microsoft had already been partnered around Office 365, the term by which the suite was known before Microsoft rebranded it earlier this year, but that the Office relationship was a more limited integration.

“We had support for Office 365 in our backup space, but we didn’t have the broader product capabilities coming from the work with the product team,” he said. “That’s the new part of the relationship.”

This collaboration is specifically around Microsoft Intune, a joint MDM/MAM application that is part of the Microsoft 365 Premium Suite, the top option of the three Microsoft 365 packages, and the one which adds advanced security features.

“Intune is very powerful, and can do a lot of things, but it is also very deep, Turner said. “There’s a lot of knobs in Intune. With our integration with Microsoft, what we are able to do with Intune is use it to manage nodes and devices with the full power of our N-central and RMM, to leverage the full power of Intune with a single pane of glass.”

Turner emphasized that this is important for MSPs because simply using Intune as a Microsoft 365 application creates extra work for them.

“We see a lot of partners struggle where they have a different instance of Intune for each client, and they have to bounce around,” he said. “With our multi-tenant capability, it doesn’t matter. They can focus on the entire estate and not pop around to each instance. That’s a problem we solve for the partners. The multi-tenancy also allows for consistency of policies across all the customers, which is important given all of those knobs in Intune. That multi-tenanted view is not possible today in Intune by itself, and having it is really valuable for our partners.”

Turner said that the expanded Microsoft relationship will also make it easier for SolarWinds to clarify to partners with Microsoft is doing, noting that many partners are still confused by the rebranding of Office and all its implications.

“We are bringing Microsoft into our user groups, and into roadshows and other events,” he indicated. “The confusion over branding impacts partners, and we think we can simplify and clarify for them what Microsoft is doing, so our partners can understand the Microsoft story better than anyone else.”

Turner also noted that this integration will keep SolarWinds on the cutting edge in terms of new developments.

“Because we collaborate so closely with the Microsoft product teams, we will be able to bring new capabilities to market faster,” he said. “We are more deeply ingrained than other RMM vendors. Partners can also expect more to come from this relationship. We will be announcing other deep collaborations across the breadth of the Microsoft offerings.”

SolarWinds MSP is cohosting a webinar with Microsoft on July 29 where the new capability will be demonstrated. Interested parties can register here.

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