Quest Software has announced the launch of its first set of Software as a Service (SaaS) Windows management solutions. Quest OnDemand will be hosted on Windows Azure, securely managing IT environments by leveraging Microsoft's Windows Identity Foundation (WIF) and Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS) 2.0. The first solutions are currently available in beta.

Quest Recovery Manager OnDemand for Active Directory provides backup and object level recovery of Active Directory data. It is designed to enable flexible, scheduled backups without manual intervention, facilitating quick and scalable recovery of Active Directory data. Quest InTrust OnDemand securely collects, stores, reports, and alerts on event data from Windows systems, helping organisations comply with external regulations, internal policies and security best practices, the company said. Both products are expected to be generally available in Q1 2010 on a subscription basis without requiring on-premises deployment and maintenance.

In addition, Quest will roll out a Windows Azure-based SharePoint site report solution, Quest Site Administrator Reports OnDemand for SharePoint, which will give administrators the ability to run overview reports on an unlimited number of sites across their organisations. This solution will be available at no cost.

"Quest has been a long time partner and leader in Windows management solutions. The evolution of adopting its on premises solutions to SaaS proves once again that Quest is committed to leveraging the latest technology to proactively lead their customers to the next level of IT efficiency," said John Chirapurath, director of the Microsoft Identity and Security Business Group at Microsoft. "The fact that the Quest OnDemand solutions are built upon the Microsoft technologies such as WIF, ADFS 2.0 and Windows Azure demonstrates the company's focus on the importance of business-ready identity and security services in cloud computing."

Quest OnDemand solutions leverage the Windows Identity Foundation for all identity management, authentication and authorisation and are hosted on the Windows Azure platform for secure storage of customer data. In addition, the company claims, ADFS 2.0 enables authentication by creating a federation between a customer's on-premises Active Directory and the Quest OnDemand solutions. The combination of these technologies provides customers with secure and seamless service.

"Quest has helped IT manage on-premises Windows environments for more than a decade, and now many of our customers are making the strategic decision to manage these environments with cloud-based services," said Dmitry Sotnikov, Manager- New Product Research, Quest Software. "Adapting to SaaS solutions will give them the security and management capabilities they need, while eliminating on-premises maintenance and minimizing upfront costs."