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Add macOS devices to ABM using Apple Configurator

Until recently, only macOS devices purchased directly from Apple, or their trusted resellers could be added to Apple Business Manager. This means, if your device was purchased from elsewhere, you would not be able to perform Automated Device Enrollment.

During Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC21), Apple finally announced the ability to manually add macOS devices to ABM using Apple Configurator on an iPhone. This implies that you can now take full advantage of Automated Device Enrollment regardless of your source of purchase.

Pre-requisites:

  • Ensure that you are already registered in Apple Business Manager (ABM)/Apple School Manager (ASM). Make sure that Automated Device Enrollment is set up with Hexnode UEM. You must be an administrator in ABM with the Device Enrollment Manager Role.
  • macOS devices to be assigned must satisfy the following conditions:
    • macOS 12 Monterey
    • Apple M1 Silicon or T2 Security chip
  • iPhones running iOS 15 or later.
  • While adding the device to DEP, it must be wiped and reset. So, ensure that you back up the device via iTunes or iCloud.
  • This feature is supported on Pro, Enterprise, Ultimate and Ultra pricing plans.

Install Apple Configurator on iPhone

  1. Go to App Store and install Apple Configurator.
  2. Once installed, open the app and sign in with your Managed Apple ID.
  3. Sign in with Managed Apple ID in Apple Configurator app

  4. Grant access to the Camera to scan pairing codes that appear on Mac devices.
  5. Once the app is prepared, you can configure additional settings by tapping the gear icon. You can decide how to connect Mac to the internet at your convenience. You can either share the Wi-Fi network credentials or use a network configuration profile.
    • Share Network: If you choose this option, the Mac will connect to the internet using the same network credentials as the one configured in the Apple Configurator app of the iPhone when it starts.
    • Configuration Profile: You need to create a configuration profile with a Wi-Fi or 802.1x payload credentials. Save the profile in a location in the Files app and then configure it in Apple Configurator.
  6. Settings in Apple Configurator app

Assign macOS devices to ABM

  1. If you’ve purchased a new macOS device and it is yet to get started, skip directly to step 2. On the other hand, if you want to assign an already configured macOS device to ABM, you must erase all existing content and settings on it.
    • Navigate to Apple Menu and select System Preferences. Now click on Erase All Content and Settings from the System Preferences menu in the menu bar.
    • In the Erase Assistant option, provide your administrator credentials and review the items that will be erased apart from the content and settings.
    • Follow the onscreen instructions and wait for the Mac to restart.
  2. Launch the Apple Configurator app on your iPhone when the Mac starts up at Setup Assistant screen.
  3. Hold the iPhone close to the Mac to be assigned. Within a few seconds, the Mac will present the assign screen automatically.
  4. Image to be scanned using Apple Configurator to assign Mac to your organization

  5. Position the pattern in the circle to scan the image that appears in the Setup Assistant. If the pairing fails, tap on Pair Manually in the Apple Configurator app and select Pair Manually in the lower-left corner of the Setup Assistant on Mac. Now, enter the six-digit code that appears on the screen.
  6. Position the pattern in the circle using Apple Configurator to assign Mac to your organization

  7. Your device will be assigned within a few seconds.
  8. Mac has been assigned to your organization

  9. Once the device is assigned, tap the menu in the lower right corner of the app on the iPhone to see the list of devices assigned by the app.
  10. List of devices while tapping menu icon in Apple Configurator

Assign the added macOS devices to the Hexnode UEM Server

  1. Sign in to Apple Business Manager (ABM)/Apple School Manager (ASM).
  2. Navigate to Devices. Choose the filter type as Source and then select Manually Added > Apple Configurator. From the list of available devices, you can verify whether your macOS device is added to DEP or not.
  3. Select the required device from the list.
  4. Click on Edit MDM server, select the MDM server to assign the devices with that server.
  5. Assign DEP devices to MDM Server

Open your Hexnode UEM portal and navigate to Enroll > All Enrollments > No-Touch > Apple Business/School Manager. If the process has been successful, you’ll find the devices under DEP Devices. If the devices do not appear here, click Sync with DEP to sync with Apple Business Manager or Apple School Manager.

What happens at the device end?

The DEP configuration profile is associated with the device as soon as the device starts up. The device enrollment is then initiated, and the configuration settings associated with the device will be deployed.

Troubleshooting Tips

  • Enrolling Devices
  • Managing Mac Devices