Thursday, 2 May 2019

First look at Intune Win32 app dependencies

The ability to deploy Win32 apps using the Intune Management Extension really improved the quality of Intune app deployment to Windows 10 devices. Microsoft have now taken this one step further with the release of Win32 app dependencies this week. 

What are app dependencies?

App dependencies are applications that must be installed before your Win32 app can be installed.

How many dependencies can I have?

There is a maximum of 100 dependencies, which includes the dependencies of any included dependencies, as well as the app itself.

What kind of dependencies can I configure?

You can add Win32 apps as dependencies for other Win32 apps, only after your Win32 app has been added and uploaded to Intune. Once your Win32 app has been added, you'll see the Dependencies option on the blade for your Win32 app.

Do I have to assign dependent apps to users or devices?

You can choose whether or not to install each dependent app automatically. By default, the Automatically install option is set to Yes for each dependency. By automatically installing a dependent app, even if the dependent app is not targeted to the user or device, Intune will install the app on the device.

How does it work?

Once the Win32 app has been uploaded to Intune you will see two new options - Dependencies and Dependency Viewer.

Select Dependencies.

Select Add to add a dependency.

You are presented with a list of available Win32 apps. Select one to be a dependent app.

Choose Select.

Choose if you want the dependency to automatically install (without being assigned). Choose Add to finish the process.

Now select the Dependency Viewer to see the active dependencies. I have a simple example here but this will be very useful to see all the dependencies and even sub-dependencies.

You can remove a dependency by clicking on the ellipses (three dots) at the end of the row in the dependency list.

What else should we know?
  • The end user will see Windows Toast Notifications indicating that dependent apps are being downloaded and installed as part of the Win32 app installation process.
  • If you choose not to Automatically install a dependency, the Win32 app installation will not be attempted.
  • Each dependency will adhere to Intune Win32 app retry logic (try to install 3 times after waiting for 5 minutes) and the global re-evaluation schedule.
  • Dependencies are only applicable at the time of installing the Win32 app on the device.
  • Dependencies are not applicable for uninstalling a Win32 app.
For me this is a very useful new feature and will help to ease the transition to modern management.

Until next time....

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