Wednesday, 16 March 2016

New ConfigMgr feature - iOS Activation Lock Bypass

System Center Configuration Manager landing page

System Center Configuration Manager Current Branch 1602 was released last Friday. The process to upgrade from 1511 is remarkably slick and practically seamless. A lot has been written about the upgrade process this week. There is a lot less written about some of the new features.

See here for a list of the new features. The main one, of course, is that there is now support for an in-place upgrade of the Operating System on site servers (from Windows Server 2008R2 to Windows Server 2012 R2). However there are so many other cool features.

I really like the iOS Activation Lock Bypass feature. It's simple yet powerful. You can read more about it in the TechNet Library

So, what is it all about?

iOS Activation Lock is a feature of the Find My iPhone app for iOS 7.1 and later devices. Activation Lock is enabled automatically when the Find My iPhone app is used on a device. After it is enabled, the user's Apple ID and password must be entered before anyone can:
  • Turn off Find My iPhone
  • Erase the device
  • Reactivate the device

Imagine the difficulty if a user leaves the company. You would not be able to reactivate the device without their Apple ID and password. Apple introduced the Activation Lock Bypass to overcome this problem and it's great to see this now supported in ConfigMgr.

What does this look like in ConfigMgr? It's so easy.

Open the Remote Device Actions on an iOS device.

Select "Activation Lock Bypass". The Activation Lock Bypass" box opens.

Select "Send Bypass Command". The ActivationLockConfirmationDialog" warning appears.

Read and accept the warning.

We can see the request in the Activation Lock Bypass dialog box.

Note that the Microsoft documents issue a stern warning when using this feature so please be careful.

"After you bypass the Activation Lock on a device, it will automatically apply a new Activation Lock if the Find My iPhone app is opened. Because of this, you should be in physical possession of the device before you follow this procedure".

Until next time.......

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