Jayden
Traoré

How to manage Lenovo devices using Hexnode MDM

Jayden Traoré

May 13, 2020

19 min read

Lenovo is a multinational technology company with headquarters in Beijing, China.

Even though Lenovo is famous for its wide array of consumer electronics, its arsenal of industrial devices like rugged laptops, rugged phones and tablets are also popular among organizations.

Organizations can make the most of these devices if they are properly managed via an MDM service provider like Hexnode MDM.

Hexnode’s partnership with Lenovo enables our users to leverage Lenovo’s API for device management via OEMConfig which extends the management capabilities beyond our native features.

Note:

Lenovo’s OEMConfig app is called the Lenovo OEMConfig.

How to manage Lenovo devices using Hexnode’s native device management feature?

Hexnode’s Android device management capabilities can be leveraged to manage Lenovo devices directly.

Enrollment

Hexnode MDM provides a wide variety of enrollment methods for Android devices, you are free to choose the ones that are convenient for your business model.

No authentication enrollment: It is the fastest enrollment method available. It only requires the server name. No authentication and no enrollment credentials are needed. All devices enrolled this way are assigned to a default user.

Email/SMS enrollment: Here the enrollment credentials are sent to the users via email or SMS. These credentials have to be entered to complete the enrollment process.

Self-Enrollment: This method allows the users to enroll their devices via Azure Active Directory, Active Directory, or Google user credentials. For other users, the admin may create a default user and a dedicated password manually or assign a common password or individual passwords for the users and sends it to them as a bulk mail. The enrollment process is pretty much the same.

QR code enrollment: In certain scenarios, it is difficult to enroll devices with credentials like username, password and portal name. Hexnode MDM lets you enroll devices easily by scanning a QR code.

ROM enrollment: If your enterprise has a collaboration with Lenovo you can flash a custom ROM to the Android Device with Hexnode MDM as a system app.

Android Enterprise Enrollment: Previously known as Android for work, it is currently the main enrollment method for android devices. It creates a separate work container on the devices. The separation of corporate and personal data is necessary if the devices are BYOD (Bring your own device) or COPE (Corporate owned personally enabled). The Hexnode for work app is used for Android enterprise enrollment. AFW# and ADB methods are also used for Android Enterprise Enrollment.

Zero-touch enrollment: This is ideal for bulk deployment of devices. The devices need to be purchased from a Lenovo zero-touch reseller partner. It is ideal for corporate-owned devices as it is a one-time configuration process. Hence, the devices come pre-configured out of the box. This also eliminates the need for user intervention in setting up the devices.

Management

Hexnode provides the A – Z in device management. The main management features for Lenovo devices include:

Device info and monitoring: Android Device monitoring features include device summary which provides a summary of the hardware info like model, type, OS version, root info, battery level, memory level. It also provides enrollment details (last checked-in, last scan, device id, enrollment date, and status).

Location information is also available with map support to pinpoint the exact location the device was last active at. Compliance to policies and restrictions, the number of apps currently on the device, activity status, the number of policies currently associated, kiosk status, and last checked-in time can also be viewed from the Manage section.

The device info section includes the device model name, manufacturer (Lenovo), Serial no, UID, etc. Network Info section includes the phone number of the SIM cards on the device, IMEI numbers of the device, roaming status, carrier details, etc.

Application, Policies, Security sections under manage has the full list of associated policies and applications.

Actions: A large list of actions are available for Lenovo devices. Scan option is used for scanning the devices to refresh the data and listing the current device status, it can also be used to scan the device location. Lock, wipe, remote ring, enabling lost mode actions are useful in cases of emergency (lost or stolen devices with valuable corporate data).

Changing the device owner, installing and uninstalling applications, associating configured policies, OS updates, changing the friendly name for the device, changing ringtone, importing contacts to device can all be done remotely via the actions tab in device management.

Enabling and disabling kiosk mode can be achieved at the click of a button. Broadcasting notifications and messages to the selected devices are very popular among our users.

The action tab also allows the exporting of device details as a pdf file. When you are all done with a device you can disenroll it from the Henoxde MDM portal using the Disenroll device action.

Action History section shows the activity log for the device along with the status of each action and messages related to it.

Remote control and view: The manage tab for Android devices provides the remote device view option. This is achieved via the remote view app which can be remotely installed on any device. It lets you view the user’s device in real-time. This nifty feature lets you monitor the users that require supervision.

The remote control feature is available for Android 5.0+ and Android Enterprise devices. The remote control allows admins to monitor and take control of the device from their PC. It can come in handy when you need to take control of the devices to diagnose and fix problems reported by the users in real-time.

Data Management: The data management section under Manage shows the data usage by the device as a whole and for each app individually.

Total data usage, Mobile data usage, WIFI data usage as a whole, and for each application are listed under this section. The data usage details can be exported as a CSV or PDF from here. The section also has filters to view the usage by dates and periods. A list of apps with blocked data access are also listed here.

Users, devices, and groups: All enrolled devices can be divided into groups for easier monitoring. Similarly, users can also be grouped.

Grouping of devices and users not only allows easier monitoring, it also helps in managing them together via actions and policies. Grouping is highly recommended in cases where the device count is high.

Hexnode MDM also supports dynamic grouping. Dynamic groups keep changing automatically based on certain specified conditions. In dynamic grouping, devices move in and out of the group during the periodic group sync, whereas custom groups maintain devices as a fixed list. The sufficiency of minimal manual effort makes dynamic grouping more desirable than manual grouping.

Restrictions

Device Functionality: Enable or disable device functionality features like camera, USB file transfer, safe mode, lock screen orientation and lock screen timeout.

Network Settings: Provision to forcefully turn the Wi-Fi on and off besides disabling or enabling the feature can be useful to certain enterprise needs.

Enabling or disabling Bluetooth, tethering, a portable wi-fi hotspot, and data roaming can be done.

Synchronization settings: Backing up or restoring data from google drive can be disabled on Android 8.0+ devices in device owner mode.

Advanced device functionality restrictions: Disabling of the device microphone, screen capture, making a call, volume adjustment, and the copying of content between normal and work profiles are available for Lenovo devices.

Advanced Display settings: Hiding the device status bar and displaying dialogs/windows are available under this section.

Advanced Connectivity settings: Bluetooth data transfer, android beam, configuring Bluetooth, configuring cell broadcast, configuring cellular network, configuring Wi-Fi, configuring hotspot and tethering, and the ability to reset network settings can be disabled from the Hexnode MDM portal.

Advanced account and application settings: Sending SMS, configuring user credentials, and modifying the user’s Google accounts (add, delete, switch) can be done here.

Installing and uninstalling apps, modifying application settings, app verification before installations, allowing the installation of applications from unknown sources, parent profile app linking, and app runtime permissions can all be enabled or disabled to suit your enterprise’s needs.

Other advanced settings: Factory reset protection can be disabled or bypassed on devices in Android Enterprise device owner mode.

Enabling location sharing, USB debugging, factory reset, reading external connected media, setting up time zone, updating date and time automatically, and configuring VPN can also be done via the Hexnode MDM portal.

All advanced device settings are available only for Android Enterprise devices.

Policies

Password: Secure your Lenovo devices with Hexnode’s password policy. Password complexity, password age, password history can be configured for the devices. Added security via auto-lock and device wipe after a set number of failed attempts can also be configured. This method is used to lock the entire device in normal mode. In device owner mode the password policies are only applicable to device owner container and work apps.

For devices running Android 7.0+ enrolled in profile owner mode the work profile alone can be locked with the password policy.

App Management: Mandatory app policy allows you to install applications on the device. In android enterprise mode (as managed google apps), rooted devices, and devices with Hexnode MDM app as a system app, apps can be installed on the device silently. In all other cases, user intervention is required to install applications.

Blacklisting of apps in Android Enterprise devices will cause the device to fall out of compliance if the blacklisted applications are present on the device. In the Profile Owner mode, blacklisted apps will be hidden from the work container. Whitelisting of apps causes all other apps(not whitelisted) to be considered as blacklisted.

App Cataloging is used to create a customized app store on the end user’s device. App configuration and app permissions can be used to manage and configure the applications before pushing them to the devices (Only in Android Enterprise).

Networks: Wi-Fi networks can be pre-configured and associated to the devices so that they can connect automatically to the network without prompting the users to enter passwords. This saves the organization the hassle of sharing the credentials with each employee.

Security: Certificates can be installed on the Lenovo devices remotely to ensure higher security. Similarly, OS updates can also be scheduled on devices enrolled in Device Owner mode.

Configurations: Wallpaper for the device home screen is customizable on all devices with Android 4.4 and above from the Hexnode MDM portal.

Mobile Data Management and File Management: The Mobile data management feature on Android 6.0+ devices allow admins to monitor how Wi-Fi and mobile data connection are used. Usage limits can be set up, network connectivity can also be restricted if limits are reached (monthly, daily, etc. on the device as a whole or on apps individually). This can be useful in tracking data hogging applications.

File Management can be used to upload files (videos, audios, images, documents) to a designated space within an enrolled device.

Kiosk Features: In most enterprises, the devices are used to access only a limited set of applications. Single app and multi-app kiosk modes by Hexnode MDM can be used for locking down your devices to only the required applications.

Hexnode also provides the option to run apps in the background as certain apps require access to other apps to function properly. The devices can be turned into Digital signages for advertisements and can be set up as a self-service kiosk. A custom kiosk launcher, kiosk screen savers, website kiosks are just the tip of the iceberg.

Kiosks can also be highly customized by restricting device actions and buttons. Kiosk exit settings and website kiosk settings should be configured as per the requirement to adapt the kiosk to the enterprise’s needs. Hexnode browser lite and Hexnode kiosk browser features can also be modified to control how the website kiosk works.

Lenovo devices are commonly used as rugged devices, hence Hexnode’s extensive kiosk capabilities will complement it quite nicely.

Geofencing and Location Tracking: Location tracking is useful for turning automatic location tracking on and off and setting the location tracking interval. Users will not be able to change these settings once the configuration policy is associated.

Geofencing is used to create a virtual fence on the map when devices exit the fence they will be marked as non-compliant and the admins will be notified. One of the many high-security Hexnode features.

Android Enterprise Compliance: This policy can be used to deactivate the Android Enterprise container on non-compliance. The deactivation time can be set for securing corporate data.

Other key features

Apps: The apps tab has everything related to applications. You can add enterprise apps and push them to the devices directly or via policies. App catalogs, app grouping, store layouts can be configured here.

You can turn websites into web apps and push them to the devices. Customizing apps, creating file shortcuts for video and pdf files, app management, app configurations, app permissions, and OEMConfig capabilities can be created and modified here.

Admin Settings and Reports: In addition to all the specific features Hexnode’s common alert and management features are also available for Lenovo devices.

Inactivity settings to mark devices as inactive after a specified period. Scheduling device scans at regular intervals. Added compliance setting like device encryption, device inactivity, MDM app removal from the device, battery level alerts and notifications, etc.

Action and compliance notifications can be enabled/disabled to notify the admins or users as the case may be. A detailed report section shows a list of device, user, compliance, location, data management, application, and audit reports. These reports can be filtered and viewed. They can also be scheduled and exported as a CSV or PDF file.

How to manage Lenovo devices using Hexnode’s OEMConfig capabilities?

To access the OEMConfig set of features for Lenovo devices

Step 1: Go to the Apps tab on your Hexnode portal

Step 2: Select Add apps > Managed Google Apps

Step 3: Search for Lenovo OEMConfig application and Approve it

Step 4: Go to policies > new policy > new blank policy > android > App configurations > configure > add new configuration > select the Lenovo OEMConfig app

Selecting the application will show you the list of all available device features that can be managed on Lenovo devices using OEMConfig.

Select the management options for the required features and save the policy. Assign this policy to the required Lenovo devices for management.

Lenovo’s OEMConfig capabilities with Hexnode MDM

Device Settings

Allow Firmware Update Over-The-Air: Use this control to enable or disable firmware updates using Firmware Over-The-Air (OTA) technology. When this policy controls is set to false, all possible OTA upgrade requests are blocked; the user may see server messages related to new firmware updates but any attempt to upgrade fails.

Disable the Power key: Use this control to disable the Power Key.

Disable the Volume Up key: Use this control to disable the Volume up Key.

Disable the Volume Down key: Use this control to disable the Volume down Key.

Disable/Enable camera: Enable or disable the camera option

Disable/Enable SD upgrade: Enable or disable the SD card upgrade

Disable/Enable fastboot : Enable or disable the fast boot feature

Disable/Enable hard reset: Enable or disable the hard reset feature

Disable/Enable recovery hotkey: Enable or disable the recovery hotkey

Disable/Enable boot on charger: Enable or disable the option of boot on charger

Enable Application Installation: Use this control to enable or disable the installation of all applications. Including silent installation.

Set Installation Whitelist: Set installation whitelist of all applications.

Set Blacklist for Installation: Set installation blacklist of all applications.

Set Uninstallation Whitelist: Set uninstallation whitelist of all applications.

Enable Application Uninstallation: Use this control to enable or disable the uninstallation of all applications. Including silent uninstallation.

Connectivity Settings

Allow Change Configuration of Bluetooth: Use this control to allow or disallow user to change configuration of Bluetooth connection manually.

Enable Bluetooth Connection: Use this control to enable or disable the device’s ability to make Bluetooth connections.

Enable Wi-Fi Connection: Use this control to enable or disable the device’s ability to connect to Wi-Fi networks.

Allow Change Configuration of Wi-Fi: Use this control to allow or disallow user to change configuration of Wi-Fi connection manually.

Enable Wi-Fi Hotspot: Use this control to enable or disable WLAN hotspot.

Allow change Settings of WLAN: Use this control to allow or disallow user to change settings of WLAN hotspot manually.

Set default APN: Setup the default APN

Disallow/Allow APN settings: Enable or disable APN settings

Disallow/Allow WIFI Access Point: Enable or disable Wi-Fi access point

Disable/Enable SIMcard: Enable or disable the device sim card

Disallow/Allow SIMcard: Allow or disallow the device sim card

Hide/Show USB menu: Display or hide the USB menu

Set current USB mode: Select the USB mode from charging, mtp, ptp, midi

Disallow/Allow USB: Allow or disallow USB on the device

Disallow/Allow WiFi Direct Connection: Allow or disallow the Wi-Fi direct connection on the device

Disallow/Allow Mobile Data: Allow or disallow the mobile data access on the device

Disable/Enable Mobile Data: Enable or disable the mobile data access on the device

Disable/Enable SD card: Enable or disable the SD card on the device

Disable/Enable USB tethering: Enable or disable the USB tethering on the device

Disallow/Allow USB tethering: Allow or disallow the USB tethering on the device

Disable/Enable Bluetooth tethering: Enable or disable bluetooth tethering on the device

Disallow/Allow Bluetooth tethering: Allow or disallow bluetooth tethering on the device

Set flight mode on/off: Turn the flight mode on the device on or off

Disallow/Allow Flight mode: Allow or disallow flight mode on the device

Disable/Enable WIFI captive portal: Enable or disable WiFi captive portal

Disallow/Allow Location: Enable or disable device location

Disable/Enable location: Enable or disable location on the device

is WiFi connect: Enable or disable wifi connect

WiFi type: Enter the Wi-Fi type

WiFi password: Set the password for the Wi-Fi

WiFi SSID: Set the Wi-Fi SSID for the connection

Set location mode: Select the type of location mode e.g. Battery saving

Http Proxy bypasslist item: Enter the HTTP Proxy bypass list items

Http Proxy port: Enter the HTTP proxy port address

Http Proxy host: Enter the HTTP proxy host ID

Advanced Device Settings

The component intflag: Set the component intflag

The component state: Set the component imtflag

The component class: Set the component class

The component packagename: Set the component package name

Set System Time: Use this control to configure system time

Allow to Change System Time: Use this control to allow or disallow users to change system time manually

Set System Date: Use this control to configure system date

Allow to Change System Date: Use this control to allow or disallow users to change system date manually

Set Timezone: Use this control to configure timezone

Allow to Change Timezone: Use this control to allow or disallow users to change timezone manually

Set screen brightness: Set the brightness for the device screen

Disallow/Allow set screen brightness: Allow or disallow the ability to control the device brightness

Set Media Volume: Set the media volume for the device

Disallow/Allow change Media Volume: Allow or disallow the ability to change the device volume

Set Notification Volume: Set the device notification volume

Disallow/Allow change Notification Volume: Allow or disallow the change in device notification volume

Set Alarm Volume: Set the device alarm volume

Disallow/Allow change Alarm Volume: Allow or disallow the change in device alarm volume

Set Sleep Timeout: Set the device sleep time

Disallow/Allow Set Sleep Timeout: Allow or disallow the device sleep timeout

Set Boot Time: Set the device boot time

Disallow/Allow Set boot time: Allow or disallow the device boot time setting

Set shutdown time: Set the device shutdown time

Disallow/Allow Set shutdown time: Allow or disallow the device shutdown time setting

Enable notifications of applications to shown in status bar: Use this control to stop applications from showing notifications on the status bar. When this policy is disabled, notifications from all applications are blocked. When this policy is enabled, notifications from all applications are shown in status bar,

Set lockscreen notification on/off: Turn lockscreen notifications on or off

Disallow/Allow lockscreen notification: Allow or disallow lockscreen notifications on the device

Allow change default launcher: Use this control to allow or disallow user to change default launcher.

Set input methodID: Set the input method ID

Is disallow: Enable or disable is disallow

Disable/Enable safe mode: Enable or disable safe mode on the device

Disable/Enable entrance to android game: Enable or disable the entrance to android game

Disable/Enable developer mode: Enable or disable the developer mode on the device

Disallow/Allow to enter developer mode: Allow or disallow the ability to enter the developer mode

Disable/Enable USB Debug: Disable or enable USB debugging on the device

Disallow/Allow USB Debugging settings: Enable or disable the USB debugging settings

Set lockscreen mode: Enable or disable the device lockscreen mode

Disallow/Allow Switch LockScreen mode: Allow or disallow the ability to switch into lockscreen mode

Disable/Enable permissions for all applications: Enable or disable the permissions needed for all applications

Disable/Enable runtime permission for all applications: Enable or disable the runtime permission needed for all applications

Disable/Enable All Unknown sources: Enable or disable the installation of applications from unknown sources

The Single Unkown soures Uid: The user ID for the unknown source

The Single Unkown soures PackageName: The package name for the unknown source

The Single Unkown soures IsCheck: Enable or disable the IsCheck from unknown sources

Note:

It is highly recommendable to use the native policies wherever possible as the OEMConfig features are still relatively new. The introduction of OEMConfig has opened up a new set of possibilities which will be added to in the future and the existing features are expected to get more fine-tuned.

Lenovo’s extensive line of smart mobile devices are vastly used in enterprises.

A dedicated device management service like Hexnode MDM can assist such devices to maximize productivity at any workplace.

Jayden Traoré

Product Evangelist @ Hexnode. Sometimes, I have the feeling I live in a story: a magnificent story written by a mediocre writer living off coffee and technology.

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