Avatier Identity Management Suite
Strengths: Full-featured user management application
Weaknesses: Support area of the website could offer more detail
Verdict: A very flexible product that needs a bit of work on documentation and support
The Avatier Identity Management Suite - or AIMS - takes a full-service approach to user lifecycle management. This product is made up of five distinct pieces that work together to manage users across the enterprise. The modules are: Account Creator, which streamlines creating user accounts; Password Bouncer, which manages password rules; Account Requester, which allows users to request access to resources via an automated workflow process; Password Station, which allows for users to manage passwords on a self-service basis; and Account Terminator, an automated process to ensure users' accounts and mailboxes are fully deactivated when necessary.
From initial installation and configuration through actual user management, this product is very easy to use. Installation can be done on a member server of the domain running IIS. The installation itself is guided by a setup wizard and takes just a few minutes. Once setup is complete, management is done through a management application. This has a well-organised interface with a clean look. Navigation is simple and intuitive and many settings are done simply by clicking a radio button or ticking a box.
This product can plug in and integrate out of the box with over 30 target operating systems, databases and applications. This, coupled with the complete user lifecycle management capability, makes AIMS extremely flexible.
Documentation for this product is definitely not light. It comes in three paper manuals, which include two installation guides and a very large reference guide. While the reference guide is quite lengthy, it is also well-organised and indexed. All three manuals include many screenshots, configuration examples and diagrams for further illustration.
Avatier offers annual support maintenance contracts to customers. Support services include version upgrades with 11/5 dial-in support centre and 24/7 email and web support, but the support area of the website does not include features such as a knowledgebase or FAQ section.
With a price starting at £12 per user, this product can become costly for very large environments. We do find it to be good value for the money, based on its solid feature set and intuitive management of the user lifecycle.