Creative Cloud Isn’t a Storm
How Adobe’s tools are a good fit for closed (and open) government networks
By Guest Blogger: Greg Reeder
Anyone who has ever played a video game may recall the health warning that accompanies it. The notice to would-be gamers states that the experience may cause the following symptoms: dizziness, altered vision, eye or muscle twitching, involuntary movements, loss of awareness, disorientation, or convulsions. Coincidentally, these symptoms are very similar to the reactions by many when they hear the words “cloud computing.”
And who can be at fault for having such a varied response to using the cloud when there are so many types of information technology “clouds”: Infrastructure-as-a-service, Platform-as-a-service; Apps-as-a-service. Plus there are private clouds, public clouds, community clouds, and hybrid clouds. The DoD even has a Cloud Broker at DISA.
Given the scary nature of cloud environments for government, one collection of software with the stormy name, however, helps to alleviate some of the typical concerns associated with operating outside the confines of protected networks. Adobe’s Creative Cloud is more a collection of creative software than a shared data environment. The applications offered through Creative Cloud for government can be configured so that they have no outbound connection to the Internet or have access to update the tools at their users’ or system administrator’s discretion. Basically a type of software cloud with a silver lining, so to speak.
Closed-Network Creative Cloud
Adobe offers a tool called the Creative Cloud Packager to build and deploy applications for you or your organization. From a network perspective, the packager offers an option to disable updates so there are no outbound calls to the Internet or unauthorized updates across the network. Creative Cloud Packager has an easy-to-use interface that makes it simple to create deployment packages that are industry-standard formats (MSI in Windows, PKG in Mac OS).
From an end-user requirements point of view, you can tailor your Creative Cloud packages to meet the needs of your team. For example you can package Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign for some team members, and then provide all of the video production tools to others. As the teams grow or change, different packages can be created and deployed in order to ensure team members always have the tools they need to be successful. You can choose 32-bit or 64-bit versions of the applications, and specify advanced configuration options, providing greater control.
How you build, configure and deploy the software is up to you and your network requirements.
One of the benefits of having control of the build and configuration process is also having control over how you want to handle updates. And, one of the benefits of Creative Cloud is that it does away with the perpetual need to purchase entirely new suites of tools (think CS3, 4, 5 and 6, for example). Adobe now provides regular enhancements to Creative Cloud applications – all available through the Creative Cloud Packager or your own Adobe Update Server hosted inside your network.
Since the Creative Cloud Packager creates native packages that are designed to work with all industry-standard deployment solutions, including SCCM, ARD, JAMF Casper, Absolute Manage, and LANDesk you can continue to process any updates based on whichever process your organizations already uses. Or, you can create deployment DVDs for isolated installs.
As for those government entities that have decided to bypass the previously mentioned gaming-cloud side effects, there are more than 2.6 million Department of Defense personnel currently eligible for Adobe’s tools through the Joint Enterprise License Agreement. Today, the Army, Air Force, DISA and OSD (WHS) all have access to Adobe’s enterprise tools as well as Creative Cloud products. And each has established various methods and configurations (both inside and outside the NIPR net) to serve their end users with the most up-to-date Creative software.
The JELA, however, is not limited to only those organizations. Anyone within the DoD can request for their organization to join the agreement and take advantage of the Creative Cloud and enterprise tools.
- Adobe JELA
- Adobe JELA Contract
- Deploying Creative Cloud with SCCM
- Creative Cloud Government
- Creative Cloud for Enterprise
Points of Contact:
Government Contract — DITCO, (618) 229-9392
Products, Adobe JELA — Adobe-JELA@carahsoft.com, (877) 992-3623
Adobe — JELA Program Manager, (703) 981-1811
Find out more:
Join the conversation – Twitter hashtag: #AdobeJELA.