Systems management company Dell KACE has launched a new appliance aimed at offering small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The K1000 Management Appliance is the first product launched by the company following its acquisition by Dell earlier this year.

The new product offers customers a new approach to configure and enforce power settings on Windows and Mac OS X machines, integrate with help=desk functionality and help provide information on real energy savings.

According to Rob Meinhardt, Dell KACE's president, one of the key elements of the product is the way that it had been specifically designed for smaller businesses. "We focus on IT generalists rather than specialists, the type of people who have to wear many hats." He said that by doing this, the Dell KACE had made the product easy to install. "We have a very intuitive style of system management, which means that the system is dramatically faster time to install than those of our competitors – we can get people up and running in a couple of hours," he said.

Meinhardt said that the company had also developed the appliance to ensure that the help desk functionality supported Infrastructure Library (ITIL) best practices to help deal with a variety of IT processes. He said that the ITIL methodology had a lot of adherents among Dell KACE's customer base. "There's a lot of misconceptions about ITIL, it's very popular, particularly at the low end.I get customers who are interested in ITIL. The other day I spoke to a customer whose IT department grew from a couple of people to about 15, with that sort of growth, ITIL's a great help. That's why it was important that we supported it."

Chip Lawson, Dell KACE's senior product manager, said that one of the key elements of the new product was the Smart Label technology. "We allow customers to pre-define labels as they want - other vendors offer the opportunity to pre-define but within guidelines. we let our customers define as they want."