Apple Business Manager – Who moved my DEP?

Webinar transcript - View the full webinar


Chantel Duckworth:  Hello, everyone. Thank you for joining us, and welcome to today's webinar. Today, we're going to be discussing Apple Business Manager. My name is Chantel Duckworth. I'll be one of your presenters today along with David Larrea.

The agenda today is going to be mainly discussing an overview of Apple Business Manager along with the processes of migrating from DEP/VPP to Apple Business Manager. At the end of the presentation, we're also going to be having a Q&A portion, so during the webinar, please feel free to post questions in the chat.

You've probably been wondering, what exactly is Apple Business Manager? Dave and I are going to talk to you a little bit about what Apple Business Manager does, what it doesn't do, and the evolution of Apple Business Manager in general.

Essentially, Apple Business Manager is a single location in which your admins can access the device enrollment program, the volume purchase program, Apple IDs, and also manage content from one central management point.

Apple Business Manager isn't a replacement for a unified endpoint management. All the configurations and policies your organization currently deploys to devices using MobileIron will still continue to be deployed using the same management servers.

David Larrea:  What are some of the benefits of Apple Business Manager? For starters, you now have a single pane of glass for your VPP and DEP assets, can now assign default MDM servers for your various device types.

For example, iOS and Mac OS devices can be automatically assigned to an organization's core and cloud servers respectively. Companies can now assign and edit role permissions using role‑based access control to different administrators.

Another feature that Apple has introduced in Apple Business Manager is locations. Locations can be used in various ways. As an example, locations can be leveraged to allow administrators the ability to independently manage [inaudible 1:15] and QA environments or for independent management of various developmental functions within an organization.

Lastly, you now have the ability to manage Apple IDs for accounts that are to be used specifically in ABM.

Chantel:  After you upgrade, Apple Business Manager will have your accounts, MDM servers, devices, server tokens, and any orders you might have placed in the past. Every Apple Business Manager account has one or more roles that define what the user of the account can do. Certain roles can manage other roles.

For example, an account that has the role of an administrator can act on an account that has the role of a manager. It's important to note that a few changes have occurred within the ABM upgrade.

Now, the agents are going to be administrators, and the admins will be managers. What was formerly a DEP admin is now going to be a device manager. What was a VPP admin is now going to be considered a content manager. Admins with create and edit rights are going to be people managers.

David:  Other items to consider when upgrading to Apple Business Manager is administrator and manager accounts will be converted to managed Apple IDs. Two‑factor authentication will be required if not previously established.

Also, after an upgrade to Apple Business Manager, you will no longer have access to the traditional portal. Should you attempt to log into, you will receive a message similar to the screenshot displayed here on the screen. You will have an option to click continue, which will direct you to the new portal.

As mentioned earlier, today we'll be giving an overview of the upgrade process to Apple Business Manager. This overview would be applicable to organizations with one MDM server and one VPP purchasing account.

If you are an organization with a legacy VPP account that was created before February of 2014 or if you have accounts associated with multiple organizations, this would not be applicable to you.

In such cases, you would have to reach out to Apple to move your VPP account into a single organization before migrating to Apple Business Manager.

Chantel:  There are two paths to upgrading to Apple Business Manager. The first is the traditional DEP side, which is to deploy that If you choose this method, you'll get prompted on the lower left‑hand side to upgrade to the Apple Business Manager program.

The other is by going directly to Apple Business Manager, which is As you can see here on the right‑hand side, this is going to be the landing page that'll be displayed.

Upon logging in, you'll be prompted for a verification code. Now, this verification code is going to be sent to the phone number on file that's associated with the agent ID that was used to upgrade to Apple Business Manager. Next, we'll have the Apple ID and privacy page.

Once you read thoroughly through all of this information and agree to Apple's terms and conditions, you can click continue. Select trust if you would like to trust this browser. By doing this, you will not be prompted for a verification code the next time you sign in.

This is going to be the last opportunity you have to not upgrade to Apple Business Manager and continue using the traditional DEP portal. If you select upgrade now, you will not be able to go back to the old DEP portal. All your information is going to be transferred over to the Apple Business Manager site.

After you choose to continue to upgrade your organization to Apple Business Manager, you're going to have to click get started. After that, click next. We're going to want to input your organization's website here. Now, this is going to be the domain that's going to be used to create new managed Apple IDs. You also have the option to adjust this domain later within the ABM settings.

Next, after reading thoroughly through the terms and conditions that Apple has provided and you choose to accept those, click agree to proceed. Now you're going to see the upgrade begin. This process only takes a few minutes for it to complete.

It's important to know that after you upgrade, Apple Business Manager will now contain all of your accounts, your MDM servers, devices, server tokens, or device orders that you've placed in the past. Here, input the time zone and language that's appropriate for your organization.

After you click save, this is going to complete the process for enrolling in Apple Business Manager. Now that you've successfully enrolled in Apple Business Manager, you're going to see the Apple Business Manager portal.

On the left‑hand side, there's an MDM server section. This section is a good place to start, because here you can check and verify that all of your MDM servers have been brought over from the old environment successfully.


David:  Once you have verified that the MDM servers are now listed in your ABM portal, you can proceed by confirming the number of devices listed in ABM by going through settings, then device purchases. This number should match the DEP devices previously reported and deployed at prior to your upgrade.

You can also further validate DEP syncs between ABM and your core cloud server by signing in your test device to your MDM server in ABM and going to your MDM server and forcing a DEP sync. The DEP device count in core cloud should increase by one after this sync.

Lastly, if your upgrade was successful, you will not have to upload a new DEP token to your MDM server environment after upgrading to ABM unless of course if your token is expiring.

If you currently have VPP licenses that have been distributed to devices, the single‑most important step when transferring your VPP licenses to ABM is the creation of a location. Apple recommends as best practice to always create a unique, new location for every VPP purchaser in your organization.

It is not recommended to merge more than one VPP purchaser account into the same location, as this will only transfer unassigned VPP licenses. In this scenario, we are transferring VPP licenses to Apps and Books from one VPP purchasing account.

The following steps are recommended to successfully transfer VPP licenses to Apps and Books in ABM without any impact. The first step is to navigate to locations, which is located in the top section of the left pane under organization and click on the institution icon to create or add a new location.

You can name this location MobileIron Production as an example and proceed by filling out the address fields. Once you have created your location, you will proceed by clicking on settings, which is located on the bottom right of your ABM portal within Apps and Books and get started.

When the get started window pops up, select the location you just created and click OK. If you do not see the newly created location, you will need to sign out of ABM and sign back in. Once you sign back in, you should then see the new location on the get started window. Select it and click OK. This step transfers your VPP licenses to Apps and Books and places the licenses in this location.

Now one important item to mention for those of you with multiple VPP purchasing accounts, Apple recommends inviting them to your ABM organization before performing this step of migrating your VPP licenses to Apps and Books.

Once you have completed the step of transferring your VPP licenses to Apps and Books, you should then be taken back to settings and Apps and Books. You'll notice here that you will see a total count of your VPP licenses listed under purchase history. If you scroll down to the bottom of this page, you will see two S tokens.

One token will be the default token with your company's proper name from Apple. The other token will be for the location you just created. In our example, it would be MobileIron Production. At this point, you will have completed upgrading and transferring your VPP licenses to Apple Business Manager.

No action is required on your MDM server unless, of course, if your VPP token is approaching its expiration date. If you need to renew your token or when you need to renew your token, the token that you want to download here would be your MobileIron Production token for this specific location that you just created. Once downloaded, you will then proceed by uploading it to your respective MDM server.

Now that you have successfully upgraded to ABM and transferred your VPP licenses to Apps and Books, you will want to go ahead and proceed with validating successful VPP syncs between ABM and your cloud portal.

In your cloud portal, locate an iOS test device under devices, do a force check‑in of the device. Once the device is checked in, go to the installed Apps tabs and confirm that the device‑based VPP licenses are still assigned and not revoked. You can also go to Apps, Apple VPP, token tab, and click on resync VPP license usage information.

Once the sync has completed, you can click on the licenses tab to confirm the available and redeemed licenses match with what's being reported in your ABM portal under content, Apps and Books. Now, these same steps could be generally followed on core should you have a core server in your environment.

This concludes the upgrade process to Apple Business Manager, the transferring of VPP licenses to Apps and Books, and the validation of DEP and VPP syncs post‑upgrade.

If you'd like to research the information presented in this webinar in more detail, "5 reasons you should begin using Apple Business Manager today" is an excellent blog worth reading written by Russ Mohr, who is our technical director of our channel and carrier team.

We also have a step‑by‑step how‑to KB article on updating to ABM available on our community. This KB also includes a video of the entire upgrade process that you can reference prior to performing your ABM upgrade in your environment. Lastly, Apple has an in‑depth admin guide available that may be helpful when performing day‑to‑day admin tasks.

We hope that you have found this webinar helpful and informative. If you have a unique scenario that was not discussed or outlined in this webinar, we encourage you to reach out to professional services or Apple Care ABM support for further assistance.

Thank you. We appreciate you attending today's webinar on upgrading to Apple Business Manager. At this time we'll go ahead and open for Q&A. Thank you once again.