Top-Rated Alternative to Symantec Ghost, SCCM, and VDI.

The Best of All Worlds

SmartDeploy combines the best of SCCM, Symantec Ghost, and VDI

Everything you want, nothing you don’t

Legacy solutions, like Symantec Ghost, can be unreliable and inconsistent between Windows OS versions and modern hardware. Comprehensive solutions, like SCCM, can be unintuitive and difficult to learn and sustain. Centralized solutions, like VDI, can be expensive and lead to unhappy users.

SmartDeploy reliably fulfills the core computer imaging tasks from solutions such as Symantec Ghost, while expanding to meet modern IT demands addressed by powerful and complex progressive solutions, like Microsoft SCCM. Plus, SmartDeploy uses the principles of centralized single image management from solutions such as Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (formerly Citrix XenDesktop).

SmartDeploy’s zero-touch endpoint management architecture bridges the gap between the simplicity of legacy solutions, the capabilities of more comprehensive solutions, and the innovation of centralized solutions.

23% Easier than Microsoft SCCM

World leading business software review platform, G2, found that SmartDeploy leads the competition based on customer feedback in these categories. 

Ease of Setup

SmartDeploy 92%
KACE 75%
SCCM 70%
Symantec Ghost 73%

Ease of Use

SmartDeploy 95%
KACE 78%
SCCM 77%
Symantec Ghost 77%

Ease of Admin

SmartDeploy 96%
KACE 82%
SCCM 78%
Symantec Ghost 75%

Ease of Doing Business With

SmartDeploy 97%
KACE 81%
SCCM 81%
Symantec Ghost 79%

Quality of Support

SmartDeploy 95%
KACE 80%
SCCM 80%
Symantec Ghost 73%

Meets Requirements

SmartDeploy 96%
KACE 86%
SCCM 86%
Symantec Ghost 71%

Likely to Recommend

SmartDeploy 96%
KACE 81%
SCCM 82%
Symantec Ghost 72%

Product Direction (% positive)

SmartDeploy 97%
KACE 78%
SCCM 77%
Symantec Ghost 54%

Based on user satisfaction ratings collected by G2, September 2021

See how we compare to your endpoint management software.

47% Faster Than Symantec Ghost

Independent benchmarking company, PassMark Software, concluded that SmartDeploy outperforms the competition. An end-to-end deployment with SmartDeploy, including image capture, takes as little as 36 minutes.


Faster than

Symantec Ghost


Faster than

Microsoft Deployment Toolkit


Faster than

Acronis Snap Deploy

Legacy, Sector-Based Disk Cloning

Traditional tools like Symantec Ghost require scripted installs or model-specific images.

Behind the times

Solutions like Symantec Ghost, Acronis Snap Deploy, and KACE K2000 still use disk cloning technology that was developed decades ago. SmartDeploy uses standard Windows file formats and a modern hardware-independent methodology.

Scripted installations

Some companies choose to avoid model-specific images by writing and running custom scripts after the baseline image is deployed. This requires a higher technical skillset and significantly more time. With SmartDeploy, one image can be deployed to any device without writing any complicated scripts.

An image for every model

With ghosting software, you must create and maintain a separate image for each computer model you support. Maintaining a separate disk image of each hardware model quickly increases your image library to an unmanageable size. With SmartDeploy, you’ll manage just one image regardless of the variation of models you support.

Modern, File-Based Imaging Software

SmartDeploy provides flexible image layering, hardware independence and built-in best practices.

One golden image

Leveraging virtualization for image creation, SmartDeploy’s modular, layered architecture allows a single image to be deployed to any device. You no longer need to create model-specific images to support various hardware devices over time.

Application deployment

Different parts of your organization may require a unique combination of applications based on the department or an employee’s role. SmartDeploy enables IT to deploy, update, and patch applications independent of the Windows OS image.

We handle drivers

SmartDeploy handles driver challenges by providing model-specific driver packages, called Platform Packs. In this patented approach, only the precise drivers and device-specific software required for a particular device are injected at deployment time. This approach allows the fastest, most reliable image deployment and highest endpoint performance.

Support any model

Seamlessly deploy your golden image to every hardware model you support without any extra effort. Make images for the software or departments you support and SmartDeploy will make sure it runs properly on anything.

Modern Imaging Software Image

Compare Imaging Solutions

SmartDeploy provides flexible image layering, hardware independence and built-in best practices.

Trial functionality
yes SmartDeploy: Fully functioning
no Symantec Ghost: Limited
no Acronis Snap Deploy: Limited
no KACE K2000: Sandbox
yes Microsoft Deployment Toolkit: Free tool – no trial
Ramp up time
yes SmartDeploy: Short
no Symantec Ghost: Medium
no Acronis Snap Deploy: Medium
no KACE K2000: Long
no Microsoft Deployment Toolkit: Long
Skill level required
yes SmartDeploy: Low
no Symantec Ghost: Medium
no Acronis Snap Deploy: Medium
no KACE K2000: High
no Microsoft Deployment Toolkit: High
Ongoing training
yes SmartDeploy: Minimal
yes Symantec Ghost: Minimal
yes Acronis Snap Deploy: Minimal
no KACE K2000: Moderate
no Microsoft Deployment Toolkit: Moderate

Smartdeploy vs Microsoft Sccm

As powerful as SCCM…as easy as ABC



Planning & setup time

SmartDeploy can be downloaded and installed in minutes. The trial is fully functioning and most techs can get through a POC on their own in a matter of hours.


Setting up an SCCM test environment is a multi-day process requiring multiple servers and a dedicated physical or virtual network. POC’s often span months.

Ongoing updates

Download and install the new version when it’s released. The only thing that needs to be re-created is your deployment media.


When installing an SCCM update, you’ll want to follow the checklist and troubleshooting steps provided by Microsoft for the corresponding update.

Ramp up time

Most SmartDeploy users are up and running within a few hours without requiring early or ongoing training thanks to the step-by-step process.


Most companies require SCCM admins to have an SCCM certification. This requires taking training courses on how to plan, deploy, and administer SCCM. Ongoing training is also typically recommended.

Skill level required

SmartDeploy’s simple how-to videos combined with guided wizards allow technicians of any skill level to achieve success. The latest best practices are always baked into the process to minimize missteps. Many organizations successfully use SmartDeploy with one or two IT staff members.


With the SCCM certification requirement, most SCCM admins must have a high technical skill level. SCCM is extremely complex and powerful which means it requires administrators who know how to set it up and maintain it for proper use. Many organizations require several IT admins to make the most of SCCM.

Ongoing training

New functionality is added to SmartDeploy multiple times per year. In most cases, the use is intuitive for those already familiar with SmartDeploy. When needed, quick how-to videos accompany new features. For this reason, ongoing training is not needed.


With a system as complex as SCCM, it is constantly changing and features are often being added or deprecated. Ongoing training is a necessity, as well as cross-training for proper coverage for vacations and travel. Substantial ongoing payments for security and critical updates should also be expected.

Cloud management

SmartDeploy offers the flexibility to manage computers in multiple ways. Manage endpoints with USB media, push over your existing network, or leverage your Box, Dropbox, Google Drive, or OneDrive account to manage users over Wi-Fi.


While SCCM used to enable image and application distribution from Azure cloud storage, that feature has been deprecated, and will not continue in the future.

Network connection

SmartDeploy is connected at your speed. It supports computers that are on or off the corporate network, and supports deployment and all other computer management features over both wired and wireless connections. SmartDeploy can handle whatever your network can handle.


PC’s must be connected to the corporate network via a wired connection in order to talk to your SCCM console. Managing remote or traveling users will require a VPN connection.


Relatively inexpensive and can be easily evaluated and purchased directly or from any software reseller. All the work done during the trial converts to your production environment so there is no work to re-do after purchase.


High cost and typically requires extensive and complicated licensing arrangements with Microsoft.

Join a demo to learn everything you need to know to get started.

VDI Alternative

Understand the tradeoffs associated with a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure

yes Single Image Management
yes IT security and control
yes HIGH productivity and endpoint performance
yes Users CAN work while disconnected
yes Implementation and ongoing cost: $
yes Planning and setup time: 1-2 days
Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)
yes Single Image Management
yes IT security and control
no LOW productivity and endpoint performance
no Users CANNOT work while disconnected
no Implementation and ongoing cost: $$$
no Planning and setup time: 2+ months

Ramp Up is a Cinch

Download, learn, and start using SmartDeploy in less than a day

SmartDeploy guides users through step-by-step wizards, with built-in deployment best practices, allowing technicians of any skill level to achieve success. Wizards simplify nearly every process within SmartDeploy including building reference virtual machines, capturing images from reference virtual machines, creating answer files, deploying images and more. Since the SmartDeploy trial is fully functioning, users pick up right where they left off with their evaluation once they have purchased. Most users are up and running within a few hours without requiring early or ongoing training.

World Class Support

We take support and your satisfaction very seriously

U.S.-based support team

Unlike large, fragmented software companies with outsourced support, you’ll work directly with our knowledgeable team in Seattle, WA.

Technicians who can help

Instead of wasting time climbing a phone support tree, get complicated questions answered quickly by our 300-level technicians.

Our community of experts

SmartDeploy support technicians respond to all inquiries and proactively post helpful tips at

Your feedback matters

Your feedback is vital to our success. We listen and respond to all customer feedback and requests.

It’s easy to get started.

Resources For Comparing Solutions

Learn how SmartDeploy stacks up against the competition