Step-By-Step: Managing Windows 10 with Administrative ADMX templates

This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: ITOps Talk Blog articles.

Windows 10 Administrative templates, released back in August 2015, are offered as language-neutral .admx files and language-specific .adml files used by Group Policy administrators to configure the same set of policies by using two languages. There are over 190 different administration templates included with Windows 10 and additional .admx files that can be downloaded here: Windows 10 Administrative Templates Download. Some of the additional 10 ADMX files include the following templates:


  • windowsserver.admx
  • terminalserver-server.admx
  • grouppolicy-server.admx
  • fileserverssagent.admx
  • userdatabackup.admx
  • grouppolicypreferences.admx
  • gamedvr.admx
  • deliveryoptimization.admx
  • mmcsnapins1.admx
  • textinput.admx


ADMX Template Reference Guides


Microsoft offers 2 free reference guides to understand what the ADMX templates control; The Group Policy Settings Reference Guide and the Group Policy Search Tool


The Group Policy Settings Reference Guide is an Excel spreadsheet that lists all the information regarding available settings in Windows 10.  The reference guide can be downloaded here: Group Policy Settings Reference Guide


The Group Policy search tool that is an updated cloud based app that allows administrators to View/Filter/Copy all the GPO settings.  You can also filter the search tool to only display Windows 10 settings.


Deployment the Templates

Windows uses a Central Store to store Administrative Templates files. Also the ADM folder is not created in a Group Policy Object (GPO) like in previous versions of Windows.  This is to ensure Windows domain controllers do not store or replicate redundant copies of .adm files.  The following are the steps to accomplish this:


  1. Create a Central Store in the SYSVOL folder on a Windows domain controller by creating a folder that is named PolicyDefinitions in the following location: (\\\SYSVOL\\policies) on the domain controller. 
    ADMX_Templates_001.pngCreating the Central Store folder titled PolicyDefinitions - ADMX Templates
    NOTE: The Central Store file location is checked by the Group Policy tools. Group Policy tools use any .admx files contined in the Central Store. The files that in the Central Store are then replicated to all domain controllers in the domain.
  2. Copy the contents of C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions from your Windows 10 Machine to Windows domain controller machine folder created earlier (\\\SYSVOL\\policies) 
    ADMX_Templates_002.pngCopying the Policy Definitions Folder - ADMX Templates
  3. Return to the Windows 10 machine and expand the templates by executing the Windows10-ADMX.msi downloaded earlier.
  4. Review and agree to the license agreement.
  5. Provide a folder to store the expanded templates such as “c:\ADMX”
  6. Select Just Me under the Install Administrative Templates (ADMX) for Windows 10 for yourself ... and click Next.
  7. Once the installation is completed, copy the files from “C:\ADMX\EN-US” to \\\SYSVOL\\policies.
    NOTE: Confirm that the right language is selected when navigating to C:\ADMX\PolicyDefinitions\en-US and coping said content to \\\SYSVOL\\policies

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