What is Software Distribution?

Software distribution is the process of delivering business software and applications to all the end users of a business spread across common platforms such as Windows, Mac and Linux. Software distribution tools enable IT to automate the process of monitoring all the software delivered across the network and supervise the usage of these softwares from a single console. A software distribution application also aids IT in restricting the usage of susceptible software and/or applications. This can be achieved either by prohibiting the software's usage or blocking executables from the convienience of their chair. Endpoint Central hosts a complete software distribution platform that offers many software distribution methods for IT admins to leverage and save themselves a lot of time.

Why is software distribution important?

In today's fast-paced environment, everything's becoming increasingly digital. As a result, software is being developed and used at a scale larger than ever and this is true for all businesses/enterprises, especially in IT. As the number of employees (and the software being used by them) in an organization increases, distributing and managing software manually and sifting through various software distribution methods becomes almost impossible for IT administrators. This creates a need for an exclusive software distribution system to be in place.

Thus, a centralized and automated software distribution service is required to make software deployment and distribution easy and to have a bird's eye view on the software present within your network. Software distribution solutions streamline software installations in multiple computers without any hassles. 

Benefits of software distribution tool

Centralized and automated software distribution tool allows you to:

  • Save time and effort by automating software distribution and backup.
  • Have a bird's eye view over the software present within your network.
  • Reduce errors by virtue of automation.
  • Maintain a central repository of software packages.
  • Leverage various software distribution methods depending on your native IT environment.
  • Automatically update software templates.
  • Install software on users' desktops silently, without affecting their productivity.

Endpoint Central's software distribution features & capabilities

The following features and capabilities that make managing and deploying software for IT admins a breeze:

  1. Software distribution for heterogeneous environment:

    You can manage and distribute software for Windows, Mac and Linux from a single console.
  2. Template-based package creation:

    There are pre-defined software templates for more than 5000 applications that supports both MSI & EXE, complete with silent-switches. These templates can be used to create ready-to-deploy software packages within a few clicks.
  3. Software repository:

    You can create a central repository of software packages that can be re-used anytime using the software distribution tool.
  4. Automatic template updates:

    The available templates are updated automatically, and can be used to create up-to-date software packages for deployment.
  5. Self-service portal:

    The self-service portal allows users to install applications on their own, without administrator's intervention.
  6. Customization:

    The application offers IT admins a customized IT software distribution process with granular control over the installation process by virtue of pre- and post-deployment activities.
  7. Scheduled installation:

    IT Admins can schedule the installation on target systems at off-hours, to avoid affecting employees' productivity.

How to distribute software with Endpoint Central?

  1. Configure the repository either network share or Http repository, based on the target.
  2. software distribution folder - ManageEngine Endpoint Central


  3. Create software packages automatically using the pre-defined templates. Templates contain all the necessary details already filled in such as the .exe file name, installation/uninstallation commands, etc. These software packages, once created can be reused any number of times.
  4. software distribution tools - ManageEngine Endpoint Central


  5. If you cannot find the required software in the templates list, you can create your package manually.
  6. Windows software distribution - ManageEngine Endpoint Central


  7. To deploy the software, select the configuration (User / Computer) under the required Operating system.
  8. Managed software distribution - ManageEngine Endpoint Central


  9. Select the packages that you want to install, the deployment policy, and the target. If required, configure the execution settings and Deploy. You can either deploy immediately or save it as a draft or template.
  10. Software distribution system - ManageEngine Endpoint Central


The workload of a system administrator to perform an enterprise software distribution can be reduced even more with the help of the self-service portal. This software deployment and distribution tool allows the admin to publish the required software from the product console and this will be available in all the endpoints managed in the network. The users can access the self-service portal by clicking on the agent tray icon. This will reduce the number of help desk tickets raised.

Steps involved in publishing software in the self service portal:

  1. Configure the Self Service Portal Settings, under Global Settings, in the Admin tab.
  2. Under the Software deployment tab, click on Self Service Portal. Choose the software that you wish to publish. Also, choose the software that needs approval before installation from the system admin.
  3. Publish the selected software to the self-service portal.

Software Distribution Scenarios:

A software distribution system lets system administrators tackle the major task of software distribution and backup. Software distribution is done in local networks and also for remote offices. With work from home being implemented in all organizations, a robust software distribution platform aids in distributing software to employees who are working from home and mobile users as well. Software distribution tools comes in handy in the following scenarios.

  • When new software is being introduced in the enterprise and it needs to be circulated to all the endpoints in the network.
  • When outdated computers are replaced, all the software needs to be deployed in the new computers.
  • When a set of new employees join the enterprise and their computers need to be installed with all the necessary software.

Try out Endpoint Central's vast array of software distribution capabilities and software distribution methods by signing up for a free trial today!