Windows Autopilot

Windows Autopilot Companion app updated to support editing the computer name and group tag

If you missed yesterday’s announcement, we enabled editing the computer name and group tag associated with a Windows Autopilot device.  You can change those values through the Intune portal now, and you can use the updated WindowsAutopilotIntune module to update them using PowerShell and the Graph API.  That leaves one additional place where it would be useful to update these values: the Windows Autopilot Companion app.

If you aren’t familiar with the Windows Autopilot Companion app, it’s designed to be used in the white glove scenario.  It is able to read the QR code that will be displayed on the white glove landing page (which you get to by pressing the Windows key five times, then choosing Windows Autopilot provisioning from the menu page), using the ID encoded in the QR code to look up the device in Intune.  Up until this point, the app could then be used to assign a user to the device.  Now you can also use it to set the group tag and the computer name (which as previously mentioned, only works for Azure AD Join at present).

I demoed this app live at Ignite, but due to the challenges with projecting an Android phone I didn’t show the actual screen.  Fortunately, there is also a UWP version of the app (it’s written in Xamarin, so it can be compiled for Windows, Android, and iOS), so I can capture screens from that pretty easily.  When you launch the app, you first need to authenticate by clicking the Logon button:

That will show a typical Azure AD sign-in, where you should specify credentials that have appropriate access to the Windows Autopilot device objects in Intune.  (See https://oofhours.com/2019/08/13/creating-a-windows-autopilot-role-in-intune/.)  Note that if you are using a guest account, i.e. authenticating to a different Intune tenant than the one your account is in, that can be done too by typing in the tenant you want to use before clicking the Logon button.

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After authenticating, you’ll see information about the tenant you’ve signed into:

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You can then search from devices using the Device Search menu item.  You can type in a serial number to look for (it can be a partial number too, e.g. “11” to get all devices with a serial number containing “11”) or click the Scan QR Code button to use the camera to grab the QR code details.

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If there is more than one device that matches, you’ll get a list to choose from.  Otherwise, you’ll see the device details and be able to make changes.

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Once you’ve done what you want (assign a user, change the group tag, provide a computer name, etc.) you can click to save the changes.

Note that some of these values won’t be shown immediately in Intune, even though they take effect immediately.  The group tag and device name are written to the Windows Autopilot service, but not to Intune itself – they will sync from Autopilot back to Intune with the next sync.  As syncs only occur every 12 hours by default, that might not be quite as quick as you would like, so I added a new Sync menu option into the app so you can easily initiate one at will.

Also note that changing the group tag on an app that you are getting ready to deploy might not make sense, as it can take a while for any dynamic groups based on that group tag to notice the change.

If you want to try it out yourself, you can get the APK file from GitHub (look at the source and navigate to the “Drops” folder) to manually install the app on Android, or the UWP APPXBUNDLE to install the app on Windows 10.  (I haven’t published an iOS file because I don’t even have a way to build the app – you need a Mac to do that, and I don’t happen to have one handy.)

Categories: Windows Autopilot

4 replies »

    • We’ve talked about it, but the administrative overhead of doing that is pretty significant and we weren’t sure that the app was useful in this generic form anyway – we always envisioned organizations building workflows around the white glove process which would require a customized app.

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  1. Thank you very much yet again Michael – I am putting together a demo of this, but for some reason the APK for the android app errors (unknown sources is allowed of course).

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