Saturday, 24 October 2020

Windows 10 modern management with Intune - BitLocker issues

Implementing a Windows 10 modern management solution with Intune is not as challenging as it has been in the past. Microsoft have improved the admin experience and the feature set, but more importantly, the platform is now very reliable and stable. Howeever we can still encounter issues from time and time. More than likely they are caused by mis-understanding or mis-configuration. I encountered some of these issues relating to BitLocker this week and I wanted to share.

1. Creating the policy

There are a number of ways to configure and enforce BitLocker in the Microsoft Endpoint Manager (MEM) admin center. The most recent way to manage device security is to use endpoint security policies in the Endpoint security node. This allows you to configure your policies simply without having to navigate the huge number of settings in device configuration profiles or security baselines.

Configuring the policy is very straightforward. There are four categories to configure. I only wanted to encrypt the OS drive so I figured that that I'd just have to configure the Base Setttings and OS Drive Settings categories.

Base Settings

OS Drive Settings

However I couldn't save the policy. 

I got the error "Encryption method setting for all drive types must have an encryption type, or all drive types must not be configured". This didn't make sense to me but I now understand that it is in fact documented. You'll find this information in the BitLocker CSP documentation.

"When you enable EncryptionMethodByDriveType, you must specify values for all three drives (operating system, fixed data, and removable data), otherwise it will fail (500 return status). For example, if you only set the encrytion method for the OS and removable drives, you will get a 500 return status".

Configuring encryption (with the same settings) on the fixed and removable drives solved the problem and I could save the policy. If you don't want to do this then you need to configure BitLocker in another location in the admin center, for now. This feature is still a work in progress.

2. Remove the ISO/DVD

This is a well known issue but it's very annoying so I want to highlight it here. It happens mostly when using VMs for testing. The Windows 10 ISO can still be mounted on the VM and this causes BitLocker to fail. 

"Failed to enable Silent Encryption. TPM is not available.


Error: BitLocker Drive Encryption detected bootable media (CD or DVD) in the computer. Remove the media and restart the computer before configuring BitLocker".

This issue is well documented. During the provisioning process, BitLocker Drive Encryption records the configuration of the device to establish a baseline. If the device configuration changes later (for example, if you remove the media), BitLocker recovery mode automatically starts. To avoid this situation, the provisioning process stops if it detects removable bootable media.

Remove the bootable media, and restart the device.

3. Security baseline conflict

I hadn't really wanted to configure an encryption method for removable drives but I was forced to do do because of issue #1 above. 

I configured the settings like this (not blocking write access to an unprotected removable drive).

That led to this error describing a conflict.

"Failed to enable Silent Encryption


Error: BitLocker Encryption cannot be applied to this drive because of conflicting Group Policy settings. When write access to drives not protected by BitLocker is denied, the use of a USB startup key cannot be required. Please have your system administrator resolve these policy conflicts before attempting to enable BitLocker".


I eventually found that this was due to a setting in the Windows 10 security baseline. The default setting was to block write access to an unprotected removable drive. Changing that setting did the trick and the OS drive was encrypted successfully.

I hope these tips help. Until next time....

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Managing Windows Virtual Desktops with Microsoft Endpoint Manager

Unsurprisingly, I have spent a lot of time recently deploying WVD solutions. In this blog post I want to highlight the MEM features that you can use to manage these desktops, especially in regard to Windows 10 multi-session. At the time of writing Configuration Manager 2006 in the latest production version.

For performance reasons ConfigMgr disables user policies on Windows 10 multi-session devices. This only happens with new client installations (1906 and later). If you upgraded the client from a previous version (pre 1906) then user policies will still be enabled. There may, of course, be a situation where you want to enable user policies and will accept any performance hit.

Open the Client Policy tab of Client Settings and choose "Enable user policy for multiple user sessions"

In versions 2006 and later, Windows 10 multi-session is now available in the list of supported versions for requirement rules. This is very useful when targeting FSLogix installations and registry settings.

If you previously selected the top-level Windows 10 platform, this action automatically selected all child platforms. The new platform isn't automatically selected. If you want to add Windows 10 multi-session, manually select it in the list.

  • Currently Intune does not support Windows 10 multi-session but development work is actively being carried out.
  • Co-management is not supported on a client running Windows 10 multi-session.

These are exciting new MEM features with more to come. I hope this helps.

Until next time.......

Sunday, 27 September 2020

iOS VPP App installation errors with Intune

I recently conducted an Intune pilot where Intune was integrated with Apple Business Manager. This allowed us to synchronize apps purchased through the Apple Volume Purchase Program (VPP). VPP simplifies the process of purchasing and deploying iOS apps.

Apps were synchronized and appeared in the Intune portal where they could assigned to groups of users.

However there were errors when the apps were installed on the test devices. There were two specific errors:

Can't find VPP license for app (0x87D13B95)

VPP App licensing pending user consent. Ensure the user has accepted the VPP management invite. (0x87D13B92)

Both errors referred to app licensing so I was pretty sure that the problem was with how the apps were assigned in Intune.

The apps were configured for device licensing in Apple Business Manager. VPP Device Assignment grants app licenses directly to a device, identifying it by serial number. This makes VPP Device Assignment the best option to use when you do not want to associate your apps to end user's Apple ID. The apps install completely silently with VPP Device Assignment.

However the apps were assigned with User licensing in Intune. 

Apps that were assigned as "Required" were straightforward to fix.

We just had to edit the assignment and choose Device licensing

Apps that were assigned as "Available" were not as straightforward.

The licensing options were greyed out. 

In this case you must remove the assignment and start again. 

This time edit the assignment before saving it and you can choose Device licensing.

This solved both problems and the apps installed correctly.
Note that User licensing is the default setting and you have to change it to Device licensing. For Available apps you must change it when you create the assignment and before you save it. For Required apps you can edit the setting afterwards.

I hope this helps.

Until next time......

Sunday, 30 August 2020

Block apps from running on fully managed Android devices

My customer is using Microsoft Intune to manage Android devices (Samsung A51) which have been enrolled as "fully managed" devices. We have a device configuration profile in place to manage the device restriction settings. The customer also wants to block consumer and system apps that are pre-installed by the OEM and gave us a list of apps.

First I looked at a restricted apps policy. This is used to allow or prevent specific apps on devices. It is supported on Android and Samsung Knox Standard devices but is only available for "device administrator" management.

Next I decided to look at uninstall packages for the apps. I created packages for some of the apps based on their URL in the Google Play Store. Then I assigned the packages as Uninstall to the Android device group. This worked well but unfortunately, not all the apps were available in the Play Store, so this was an incomplete solution.

I found the answer with Android Enterprise system apps.

This allowed me to create the app packages using the Package Name, with no reference to the Play Store. Every Android app has a registered package name. You just have to be able to find it.

This search link will give you details on package names for all system apps pre-installed on many Samsung models. I found everything I needed and was able to create the uninstall packages.
  • Navigate to the Endpoint Manager admin center to create the apps.
  • Click Apps > All Apps > Add
  • For the App Type, look at the bottom option and choose Android Enterprise system app.

  • Click Select to commence the Add App wizard.

  • This is where you enter the app details. Pay particular attention to the Package name. It must be entered correctly. The tooltip tells us to contact the device manufacturer to get the system apps package name of the format Click Next to continue.
  • You only have two options on the Assignments page. To enable an app, assign the system app as Required. To disable an app, assign the system app as Uninstall. System apps cannot be assigned as available. Select the assignment groups and click Next.
  • Review and create the app.
I was able to prevent the apps in the table below from running and satisfy the customer requirement.


Package Name


Galaxy Store

Verizon Call Filter


Verizon Cloud


Verizon Digital Secure (Safe)

My Verizon


AR Zone


Bixby Voice

Bixby Voice Stub

Bixby Home

Bixby Service

Bixby Vision Framework

Game Launcher

Samsung Internet

I hope this helps. Until next time....

Tuesday, 18 August 2020

CMG and VPN split tunnelling

Let's first consider some CMG scenarios. First and foremost we deploy a CMG to manage internet-based clients. However, when the CMG is in place it can also be used to alleviate traffic on the VPN, subject to configuration of VPN split tunnelling. It is important to note the distinction between internet-based clients and those using the VPN. They are both remote clients but ConfigMgr handles them differently. Clients using the VPN will be deemed to be on the Intranet because they can communicate with a domain controller and a management point. Otherwise they are deemed to be on the Internet. 

Scenario 1: 

No additional boundary/boundary group configuration - CMG can manage devices truly on the internet that are not connected via VPN. Policy and content requests will be directly to internet with no chance of using corporate network.

Scenario 2: 

Configure boundary group for VPN subnets and associate with CMG for policy and content - VPN devices will connect to CMG for policy and Cloud distribution point for content. These requests will be made through the corporate network unless the traffic is routed directly to internet. Split tunnelling configuration is required to implement.

So what do we need to add to the split tunnelling configuration? It's very straightforward if your VPN configuration supports URLs. You need entries for the CMG and the storage account. The URLs are easy to find.

You'll find the service name in the properties of the CMG in the ConfigMgr console. You can see that the example from my lab is

What about the storage account? You'll find that in the Azure portal. See the example from my lab

You can also see this information in the log files on a ConfigMgr client. I have a test client installing software over CMG.

You can see the CMG URL in the CAS.log file.

Have a look in the DataTransferService.log file for the URL of the storage account. You'll see a line like:

Modifying download source from to (pre download)

What do you do if your VPN does not support split tunnel configuration via URL? It will be necessary to use IP addresses and ranges

The IP address of the CMG will not be known until it is deployed.

Then you'll find it in the Azure portal. It's in my lab.

The IP ranges for Azure storage are published by Microsoft in a json file. However, it can be challenging to extract the information needed for your region. A Microsoft PFE (Ken Wygant) has published a community script to extract this information.

It gives you a list of IP ranges like this (this example is for EastUS2 region).

Then you can configure your split tunnel.

Thanks to Bryan Dam and Sandy Zeng for helping me to figure this out on the MVP distribution list.

I hope this helps. Until next time.....