PDQ Product Comparison

PDQ Connect is an agent-based, cloud-hosted, device management platform that allows systems administrators the ability to remotely deploy applications and updates to their Windows computers. If you're not sure if PDQ Connect is the right fit for you, read on to learn more about how it compares to other products in the PDQ catalogue. 

PDQ Connect vs. PDQ Deploy & Inventory

PDQ Connect is heavily inspired by the combined functionality of PDQ Deploy & Inventory. When we created PDQ Connect, we set out to provide the features that you know and love from PDQ Deploy & Inventory, while solving the problem of managing remote devices. Below we touch on some of the key differences between the two products. For a full side by side comparison of nearly all aspects of PDQ Connect next to PDQ Deploy and PDQ Inventory, check out the comparison chart at the link below. 

How PDQ Connect compares to Deploy & Inventory | PDQ

Device Communication

While PDQ Deploy & Inventory require the ability to resolve computer hostnames via DNS and communicate with target computers over SMB, PDQ Connect uses an agent to communicate directly with your target computers over the internet using Secure Web Sockets (WSS). 

Offline Devices

In PDQ Deploy, if a device is offline at the time of a deployment (either with Deploy Once or part of a Schedule) the deployment will fail. If the Retry Queue is enabled, the deployment will be added and will retry the deployment according to the Retry Queue settings. 

In PDQ Connect, if a device is offline at the time of a deployment, the deployment will be queued and will be retried when the device comes back online. This is similar to creating a Schedule in PDQ Deploy using a Heartbeat trigger. 


Some of the terminology that PDQ Deploy & Inventory customers have learned over the years has changed in PDQ Connect. 

Schedules > Automations: In PDQ Deploy Schedules are used to automate deployments. In PDQ Connect, this same functionality is referred to as Automations. 

Collections > Groups: In PDQ Inventory Collections are used to organize devices and for targeting in deployments. In PDQ Connect, this same functionality is referred to as Groups. 

PDQ Connect vs. SimpleMDM

SimpleMDM is PDQ's Apple device management solution, which allows systems administrators to manage Apple macOS, iOS, iPadOS, and tvOS devices using Apple's MDM protocol. While PDQ Connect and SimpleMDM both have remote management capabilities, they are separate products designed for managing different device platforms. 

SimpleMDM contains a robust set of profiles that can be applied to your Apple devices that can restrict or allow device features, a web content filter, app restrictions, and much more. You can also use SimpleMDM to deploy apps iOS and macOS apps from the Apple App Store, custom apps for macOS devices, scripts, as well as a hosted Munki solution with pre-configured apps for your macOS devices. 

PDQ Connect is designed for remote management of Windows devices utilizing an agent that communicates with PDQ Connect over the internet using the Secure Web Sockets (WSS) protocol. The PDQ Connect Agent can only be installed on supported Windows devices and requires less initial setup than an MDM enrollment. PDQ Connect also allows systems administrators to deploy Windows applications with both Custom Packages and pre-built auto-updating packages from our Package Library. 

PDQ Connect vs. SmartDeploy

SmartDeploy is PDQ's solution for imaging Windows devices. Both SmartDeploy and PDQ Connect utilize an agent (each product has its own agent) but the two products serve vastly different purposes when it comes to device management. 

To quickly sum it up: SmartDeploy is designed for imaging devices while PDQ Connect is designed for managing existing devices.

SmartDeploy also provides systems administrators with access to device drivers to simplify the process of creating and deploying device images, while PDQ Connect provides access to the same Package Library as PDQ Deploy. While SmartDeploy does contain some application deployment capabilities, it's primary focus is on device imaging and re-imaging and is not as well suited for continued management of applications and updates once the device is in use. 

PDQ Connect also gathers extensive device inventory information and contains the ability to create Device Groups for organizing your devices and targeting in deployments and automations. 

Still have a question or want to share what you have learned? Visit our Community Discord to get help and collaborate with others.