Perform real-time management in MEM admin center with Configuration Manager Technical Preview 2005

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Update 2005 for the Technical Preview Branch of Microsoft Endpoint Configuration Manager has been released.  This release brings the power of Configuration Manager real-time management to the Microsoft Endpoint Manager admin center. 

 

You can now initiate an application install in real time for a tenant attached device from the Microsoft Endpoint Management admin center.  Helpdesk users can initiate real-time queries and run PowerShell scripts from the cloud against an individual Configuration Manager managed device and return the results to the admin center. Additionally, you can now see a timeline of events that shows past activity on the device that can help you troubleshoot problems for each device.

 

See a demonstration using CMPivot queries to get real-time information for your tenant attached devices from anywhere – including your mobile device!

 

 

Learn more about Tenant Attach: Configuration Manager real-time management from admin center.

 

This preview release also includes:

 

VPN boundary type - To simplify managing remote clients, you can now create a new boundary type for VPNs. Previously, you had to create boundaries for VPN clients based on the IP address or subnet. Now when a client sends a location request, it includes additional information about its network configuration. Based upon this information, the server determines whether the client is on a VPN. All clients that connect through a VPN automatically belong to the boundary group associated with this new boundary type.

 

Azure AD authentication in Software Center - This release fixes an issue with Software Center and Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) authentication. Software Center would use Windows authentication to get the list of user available apps via the cloud management gateway (CMG), which would fail. It now uses Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) identity for devices joined to Azure AD. These devices can be cloud-joined or hybrid-joined.

Install and upgrade the client on a metered connection - Starting in this release, client install and upgrade both work when you set the client setting Client communication on metered internet connections to Allow.

 

Task sequence media support for cloud-based content –  Even though there are more remote devices to manage these days, you may still have business processes to recover devices using task sequence media. For example, you send a USB key to a remote user to reimage their device. Or a remote office that has a local PXE server, but devices mainly connect to your main network over the internet. Instead of further taxing the VPN to download large OS deployment content, boot media and PXE deployments can now get content from cloud-based sources.

 

Improvements to cloud management gateway cmdlets - With more customers managing remote devices now, this release includes several new and improved Windows PowerShell cmdlets for the cloud management gateway (CMG). You can use these cmdlets to automate the creation, configuration, and management of the CMG service and Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) requirements.

 

Community hub and GitHub - The IT Admin community has developed a wealth of knowledge over the years. Rather than reinventing items like Scripts and Reports from scratch, we've built a Configuration Manager Community hub where IT Admins can share with each other. By leveraging the work of others, you can save hours of work. The Community hub fosters creativity by building on others work and having other people build on yours. GitHub already has industry-wide processes and tools built for sharing. Now, the Community hub will leverage those tools directly in the Configuration Manager Console as foundational pieces for driving this new community.

 

Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise - Office 365 ProPlus was renamed to Microsoft 365 Apps for enterprise on April 21, 2020. Starting in this technical preview the following changes have been made:

  • The Configuration Manager console has been updated to use the new name.
    • This change also includes update channel names for Microsoft 365 Apps.
  • A banner notification was added to the console to notify you if one or more automatic deployment rules reference obsolete channel names in the Title criteria for Microsoft 365 Apps updates.

Report setup and upgrade failures to Microsoft - If the setup or update process fails to complete successfully, you can now report the error directly to Microsoft. If a failure occurs, the Report update error to Microsoft button is enabled. When you use the button, an interactive wizard opens allowing you to provide more information to us.

 

Notification for Azure AD app secret key expiration – Based on your UserVoice feedback, if you Configure Azure services to cloud-attach your site, the Configuration Manager console now displays notifications for the following circumstances:

  • One or more Azure AD app secret keys will expire soon
  • One or more Azure AD app secret keys have expired

Improvements to BitLocker task sequence steps - Based on your UserVoice feedback, you can now specify the Disk encryption mode on the Enable BitLocker and Pre-provision BitLocker task sequence steps. The Enable BitLocker step also now includes the setting to Skip this step for computers that do not have a TPM or when TPM is not enabled

 

Improvements to the content library cleanup tool – If you remove content from a distribution point while the site system is offline, an orphaned record can exist in WMI. Over time, this behavior can eventually lead to a warning status on the distribution point. The content library cleanup tool in delete mode could remove orphaned files from the content library. It can now also remove orphaned content records from the WMI provider on a distribution point. 

 

Remove command prompt during Windows 10 in-place upgrade - During a task sequence to upgrade a device to Windows 10, during one of the final Windows configuration phases a command prompt window opens. The window is on top of the Windows out-of-box experience (OOBE), and users can interact with it to disrupt the upgrade process. Starting in this release, the SetupCompleteTemplate.cmd and SetupRollbackTemplate.cmd scripts from Configuration Manager include a change to hide the command prompt window.

 

Update 2005 for Technical Preview Branch is available in the Microsoft Endpoint Configuration Manager Technical Preview console. For new installations, the 2002 baseline version of Microsoft Endpoint Configuration Manager Technical Preview Branch is available on the Microsoft Evaluation Center. Technical Preview Branch releases give you an opportunity to try out new Configuration Manager features in a test environment before they are made generally available.

We would love to hear your thoughts about the latest Technical Preview!  Send us Feedback about product issues directly from the console and our UserVoice page for ideas about new features.

Thanks,

The Configuration Manager team

Configuration Manager Resources:

Documentation for Configuration Manager Technical Previews

Try the Configuration Manager Technical Preview Branch

Documentation for Configuration Manager

Microsoft Endpoint Manager announcement

Microsoft Endpoint Manager vision statement

Configuration Manager Forums

Configuration Manager Support

 

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