VMware UEM series – Part 3 : management and result
All good things come in three parts so this series is no exception. With this last part I conclude the series about VMware UEM. There is much to tell and so much to show that it could be a 10 series blog if you like.
There is no use in doing a 10 series blog for with this 3 series blog you know enough to get started and build your own environment. The best way to learn is to do it yourself, just like with biking you can watch for ages but only will you learn when you do it yourself.
So let’s get started.
In my previous blogs I showed you how to setup the policies, file shares, management console and the agent.
Read the first blog here
and the second one here
Interested in the combination with AppVolumes? your wish is my command, read it here
Now let’s take a quick look at the last part, what can you do in the console and how does it look at the user side.
So the management console is open and I created a basic Microsoft Office 2013 set, just to get the customer started.
There a three main menu options in VMware UEM;
- User environment
- Condition sets.
The first one, personalization is about making sure the users environment is created just like they want it to be. Not like in the old days with roaming profiles (don’t tell me you still use them, do you?) where the user got their settings at logon and nothing would be injected at launch time. logging of took longer and longer each day for their profile was growing.
With VMware UEM you specify exactly for that user what is injected at which time and what is saved after they close the application or log off. Making sure they get what they want and save what they want, nothing more nothing less. I’ll go further on this later on.
The second one is User environment which is everything that you have tucked away in neat Kix logonscript or group policy (preferences). The way VMware UEM is doing it (and some other UEM solutions) is that everything is based on context. There is no logon and logoff only there is context of the user and it’s device. who is where, working on what device at what time with what operating system having which USB device inserted and with which screen resolution. That’s the context you want to have before you connect that drive mapping they can’t access or give they access to a resource that is only allowed when working inside the office.
The last one is the condition sets that make up the context, you can go crazy with them or just make it simple and check whether they are in the office or not.
So first step Personalization, I opened Word as an application and looked that the menu option Import and export. You can specify exactly which directories, files, key, hives are saved for the user. VMware UEM offers a selection already but you can add or delete whatever you want making it fit for the user.
The settings of the applications are saved, you set the time and frequency they are saved in the group policy. From the user desktop, as you will see later on, they can select to revert settings for one application only. With roaming profiles that was impossible.
Per application you can select certain settings to be executed when the application is launched. Perhaps you have one printer that you want to be connected once they work with SAP, there is no use to connect it at logon for that would take 5 seconds there. Better is to connect it at application launch. The printer is just one example, there are so many more.
As I wrote earlier, you work with context. Context is e.g. an IP Address that is different for internal users then if they work from home. You can set Notepad to be only available when a user is connected internally and not show it when they work abroad.
The fastest logon is the best logon for a user, they are happy users when they logon and they are seeing their desktop within seconds. To achieve that you need to insert certain application specific settings when the application starts. With VMware UEM that is easily configured. You can also select when the settings are exported at logoff or when you exit the application.
With mandatory profiles you had to open the profile to add settings to it and ship it to the users. With VMware UEM you can set predefined settings to any user logging on, these settings will override the user settings and be mandatory. You as an administrator have control on what a setting is and what you allow to be saved. An example is the default homepage for Internet Explorer, perhaps that one needs to be your internal company page and not playboy.com that some might want.
Next one is User Environment. what to say about that one, if you look the screenshot below you see that anything you now do with logon scripts or policies can be done with UEM. One reminder, that’s anything in the user sphere, you can’t handle the system with VMware UEM, hence the UEM.
The last part is the condition sets. All the condition sets you create will be shown in this menu tab. you can create more or edit existing. There are a million option to be set and combinations to be make. the hardest part is to be smart about this and not build an elephant when a mouse is big enough.
From a user perspective
So let’s take a quick look at the user side of this. There is nothing to show when logging on. there are no progress bars or anything running. I logged on to a desktop and opened the start menu. Only the VMware UEM managed applications are there and there is no Microsoft Office so what up?
Well this image didn’t have office installed and VMware UEM actively checks whether the executable is there before it shows the shortcut.
There is also a UEM self support button and a UEM refresh, the later on is only needed when you request e.g. access to a new application during the day and you want to see the shortcut without having to logoff and logon. clicking refresh will show the new shortcut and give you access.
If you notice that some setting in an application is wrong and you are sure it was different yesterday, you click on self support. For each application where backup is setup you will see a Revert button (Zet terug in Dutch).
You can revert the application settings for that one application without hurting any other. This saves zillions of calls to a service desk I think.
So that enough about UEM for now, I think you get the picture.
Play with it and learn, you can’t do without UEM these days.