Because packages are simply a series of files along with instructions for their ultimate location in a Mac's file system, you can easily configure non-application packages for deploying configuration files and documents. Coupled with StarDeploy or Munki, this method makes it easy to add, remove, or update almost any item over the network, including browser bookmarks, security certificates, and default system or application settings.
(Note: Adobe doesn't use Apple's package format, but Munki does support remote install of Adobe applications.)
Essential Mac tools Nos. 8, 9, and 10: PackageMaker, InstallEase, and Iceberg
If you're going to deploy non-application packages, you'll need a tool to create them. Apple's PackageMaker is a great tool for this, and it is included with the company's Xcode developer suite, which is free and available via the Mac App Store.
Intended for use by developers to create install packages, PackageMaker provides admins with an easy way to build packages to push out to clients on their network. As noted above, these packages can be almost anything you want to deploy to a range of client devices, including documents.
Two free alternatives are openly available, but not quite as developer-friendly: the open source Iceberg and the free InstallEase, which was developed as a companion to the Absolute Manage client management suite.
Essential Mac tool No. 11: Property List Editor
Admins looking to edit system and applications preferences will want to turn to Property List Editor, a GUI tool for editing the XML .plist preference files. A similar free tool, Plist Editor, is available for modifying these files from Windows machines. You may, however, find modifying preferences from within an app and copying the resulting .plist files an easier process than using these tools.
Essential Mac tool No. 12: File Distributor
File Distributor is a slightly different form of deployment tool. It allows admins to replace files at various locations within a file system. You can even make use of wild cards to specify multiple locations. This is particularly helpful if you are using network home directories and need to deploy documents or configuration files across multiple user accounts.
Essential Mac tool No. 13: FileWave
Another deployment tool worth investigating is the commercial FileWave. This Mac/Windows tool can be used to dynamically manage application installations across your network. FileWave's approach has advantages for license compliance and reclamation, as well as flexibly deploying and redeploying applications as needed.
Essential Mac tools Nos. 14 and 15: Apple's Active Directory Client and Directory Utility
Creating a functional, secure environment requires more than just rolling out computers and software. Global accounts stored in a secure directory service, single sign-on, the ability to secure network and local resources, and the ability to preconfigure and manage the user experience on any workstation is critical. The undisputed leader in directory services, even in Mac environments, is Microsoft's Active Directory. Thankfully, many worthwhile tools for integrating with Active Directory are available, beginning with Apple's Active Directory client and Directory Utility.