MSP, IT management, Content

NinjaRMM 5.0: MSPs Gain Linux Support And…

NinjaRMM has released version 5.0 of the company's remote monitoring and management (RMM) software platform. Yes, there's Linux support and key feature enhancements focused on MSP automation. But version 5.0 is only one piece of a larger platform story that NinjaRMM is gradually hatching.

Salvatore Sferlazza, CEO, NinjaRMM
Salvatore Sferlazza, CEO, NinjaRMM

First, the news: NinjaRMM 5.0 supports...

  • the management of major Linux distributions such as Canonical's Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, CentOS and IBM's Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL).
  • Microsoft Windows- and Apple Mac-native drive encryption management tools BitLocker and FileVault. MSPs can therefore monitor for drive encryption status, trigger alerts, tickets and automations based on encryption status, and more, NinjaRMM says.
  • Maintenance mode, which allows MSPs to suppress notifications, alerts, triggers, tickets, and tasks during maintenance windows. The net result should be reduced alarm fatigue, the company says.
  • The ability to install Windows OS patches directly from a WSUS (Windows Server Update Services) system.
  • New dashboards to keep NinjaRMM users up-to-date on the most pressing notifications. Plus, a new activities provides a detailed, auditable log of all activities taken in Ninja, by Ninja, or by technicians using Ninja for the past three months.

NinjaRMM prioritized those capabilities based on specific community feature requests, CEO Sal Sferlazza tells ChannelE2E. At the same time, the company's R&D team has quietly become a multi-lane development highway that's focused on a portfolio of products -- RMM, backup and disaster recovery (BDR), and... stay tuned.

NinjaRMM's R&D Efforts So Far

The core NinjaRMM platform has critical mass with MSPs and IT organizations. Indeed, the software company's installed base spanned more than 4,000 MSPs and organizations as of early 2020. By August 2020, NinjaRMM pulled back the curtain on its BDR platform for MSPs. Instead of potentially acquiring a BDR business, NinjaRMM wrote the code from scratch. The company's RMM customers can essentially activate the BDR offering from their existing dashboards.

The BDR launch in 2020 was a validation step. NinjaRMM is taking its time with that offering, and BDR should be "massively accretive in 2021," Sferlazza asserts.

The R&D efforts don't end there. Multiple development projects -- essentially leveraging one underlying code base/user experience -- are moving forward. Also, the 185-person company has an "aggressive" hiring plan that pushes far beyond U.S. borders. Watch for localized products to pop up in multiple languages.

So what's next -- beyond RMM 5.0, BDR and a global roadmap? Sferlazza isn't quite ready to reveal the longer-term roadmap. Instead, he points to today's news. NinjaRMM 5.0, he says, delivers on the most requested features that MSPs and IT organizations have been demanding. Those automation features, in turn, will make MSPs more profitable, he asserts.

NinjaRMM MSP Software Portfolio: Build vs Buy

Like many of its rivals, NinjaRMM is backed by a private equity firm. In this case, the investor is Summit Partners. But here's the twist: The March 2020 private equity deal involved a minority investment -- rather than an outright majority acquisition.

The minority funding approach allows the company to scale R&D and other efforts, and also ensures Sferlazza retains control of the software firm’s business destiny -- including an emphasis on in-house R&D.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.