Apps Purchased in Volume

Jamf Pro allows you to distribute App Store apps and apps purchased in volume (including custom apps and apps offered as a Universal Purchase) to computers, mobile devices, and users. After an app has been distributed, you can use Jamf Pro to update apps that have been installed by Jamf Pro.

Jamf Pro provides two distribution methods for apps:

  • Install the app automatically/prompt users to install the app

  • Make the app available in Self Service

When you distribute an app, you add it to Jamf Pro and configure settings for the app, such as the distribution method. (For more information, see Content Distribution Methods in Jamf Pro.) Then, you specify the computers, mobile devices, and users that should receive it (called “scope”).

You can distribute App Store apps and apps purchased in volume to computers, mobile devices, or users using managed distribution. For more information, see Device-Assigned Managed Distribution.

As an alternative to managed distribution, Jamf Pro also supports distributing App Store apps and apps purchased in volume using redeemable VPP codes. For more information, see VPP Codes.

App Store apps for computers that are distributed with user-based assignments or with VPP codes are not managed by Jamf Pro. Users can update apps using the App Store or uninstall apps from their computers.

Apps are enabled by default when added to Jamf Pro. This means you can edit the app details and assign licenses. Based on the selected distribution method, the app will be either displayed in Self Service or installed on computers or mobile devices. When an app is disabled, the app's subsequent installations are stopped and it is not displayed in Self Service. You cannot edit the app details if it is disabled.

An app will be automatically disabled in Jamf Pro if it is a managed distribution item that has been removed from the App Store. You will not be able to assign licenses, and the installation commands will not be sent. The app will not be displayed in Self Service. An automatically disabled managed distribution item will not be removed from computers or mobile devices that already have this item installed.

Managed App Configuration

You can use Jamf Pro to configure settings for a managed app before distributing it to mobile devices.

Note: Managed App Configuration only applies to mobile devices with iOS 7 or later, or Apple TV devices with tvOS 10.2 or later.

There are also several variables that you can use to populate settings in a managed app with attribute values stored in Jamf Pro. This allows you to create preferences containing information about each user and mobile device to which you are distributing the app.

When the app is installed on a mobile device, the variable is replaced with the value of the corresponding attribute in Jamf Pro.

Variable

Mobile Device Information

$DEVICENAME

Mobile Device Name

$SERIALNUMBER

Serial Number

$UDID

UDID

$USERNAME

Username

$FULLNAME or $REALNAME

Full Name

$EMAIL

Email Address

$PHONE

Phone Number

$ROOM

Room

$POSITION

Position

$MACADDRESS

MAC Address

$JSSID

Jamf Pro ID

$APPJSSID

Jamf Pro ID of the App

$SITEID

Site ID

$SITENAME

Site Name

$BUILDINGNAME

Building Name

$BUILDINGID

Building ID

$DEPARTMENTID

Department ID

$DEPARTMENTNAME

Department Name

$JPS_URL

Jamf Pro URL

Note: An $EXTENSIONATTRIBUTE_<#> variable is generated each time you create a mobile device extension attribute. For more information, see Mobile Device Extension Attribute Input Types.

General Requirements

The requirements for distributing an App Store app or an app purchased in volume vary for computers and mobile devices.

For computers, you need the following:

  • To allow users to install App Store apps from Self Service via MDM, or to allow App Store apps to be installed automatically you need the following:

    • A push certificate in Jamf Pro (For information, see Push Certificates.)

    • The Enable certificate-based authentication and Enable push notifications settings configured in Jamf Pro (For information, see Security Settings.)

    • Computers that are bound to a directory service or local user accounts that have been MDM-enabled (For information, see Directory Bindings and the Enabling MDM for Local User Accounts Knowledge Base article.)

      Note: On computers with macOS 10.10 or later and Jamf Pro 9.64 or later, the local user account is automatically MDM-enabled the first time a Mac App Store app is installed automatically or via Self Service, or a user-level configuration profile is installed via Self Service. With PreStage enrollment, the first local user account that is created is made MDM-enabled.

    • Apps assigned to computers or users via managed distribution (For more information, see Device-Assigned Managed Distribution and User-Assigned Managed Distribution.)

  • To allow users to install apps from the Mac App Store (linked from Self Service), you need the following:

    • Computers with macOS 10.7 or later

    • Computers that are bound to a directory service or local user accounts that have been MDM-enabled (For information, see Directory Bindings and the Enabling MDM for Local User Accounts Knowledge Base article.)

    • Users may be prompted to enter an Apple ID

  • Per-App VPN connections are only applied to computers with macOS 11 or later. (For more information about how create a computer configuration profile with a Per-App VPN connection, see Computer Configuration Profiles.)

For mobile devices, you need the following:

Distributing an App Store App or App Purchased in Volume

  1. Log in to Jamf Pro.

  2. (Computers only) Click Computers at the top of the page, and then click Mac App Store Apps.

  3. (Mobile devices only) Click Devices at the top of the page, and then click Mobile Device Apps.

  4. Click New images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81542777/Icon_New_Button.png .

  5. (Mobile devices only) Select App Store app or apps purchased in volume and click Next.

  6. Do one of the following:

    • To add the app by browsing the App Store or apps purchased in volume, enter the name of the app, choose an App Store country and click Next. Then click Add for the app you want to add.

    • To add the app by uploading a VPP code spreadsheet, click Choose File and upload the Excel spreadsheet (.xls) that contains VPP codes for the app.

    • To add the app by manually entering information about it, click Enter Manually.

  7. Use the General pane to configure settings for the app, including the distribution method.
    If you are distributing the app to mobile devices, you can choose whether to make the app managed.
    You can also enable automatic app updates.

    Note: Beginning with iOS 10.3, you can require a mobile device to have a tethered network connection to download the app. A tethered network connection requires a computer with macOS 10.12.4 or later that is connected to the Internet via Ethernet with Wi-Fi turned off. Portable computers must be plugged in to a power source because the tethered caching service prevents computers from going to sleep. Select the Require tethered network connection for app installation checkbox. This checkbox is only displayed if "Install Automatically/Prompt Users to Install" is chosen in the Distribution Method pop-up menu. App updates will not require tethering; this setting is for initial installations of an app only.

  8. Click the Scope tab and configure the scope of the app.
    For more information, see Scope.

  9. (Optional) Click the Self Service tab and configure the way the app is displayed in Self Service. You can customize the text displayed in the description for the app in Self Service by using Markdown in the Description field.
    For information about Markdown, see the Using Markdown to Format Text Knowledge Base article.

    Note: The Self Service tab is only displayed if "Make Available in Self Service" is chosen in the Distribution Method pop-up menu.

  10. (Optional) If you want to distribute the app directly to computers or mobile devices via managed distribution, do the following:

    1. Click the Managed Distribution tab, and then click the Device Assignments tab.

    2. (Computers only) Select the Assign Volume Content checkbox.

    3. (Mobile devices only) Select the Assign Content Purchased in Volume checkbox.

    4. Choose the location that has purchased the app.

  11. (Optional) If you want to associate VPP codes with the app and have not already uploaded a VPP code spreadsheet, do the following:

    1. Click the Managed Distribution tab, and then click the VPP Codes tab.

    2. Upload the Excel spreadsheet (.xls) that contains VPP codes for the app.

  12. (Optional for mobile devices only) Click the App Configuration tab and configure the preferences as needed.

    Note: The App Configuration tab is only displayed if the Make App Managed when possible checkbox is selected.

    For help generating the preferences, click the AppConfig Generator link. The AppConfig Generator enables you to generate the PLIST file to enter in the Preferences field. For more information about AppConfig, see the AppConfig Community website:
    https://www.appconfig.org

  13. Click Save images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81531754/floppy-disk.png .

Updating an App Store App or App Purchased in Volume

Jamf Pro allows you to update an individual App Store app or an app purchased in volume in the following ways:

  • Schedule automatic app updates—This automatically updates the app description, icon, and version in Jamf Pro and on computers and mobile devices. This update happens once a day depending on the time of day you specify.

  • Automatically force an app to update—You can automatically force an App Store app or an app purchased in volume to update on computers and mobile devices. This update happens automatically every time computers or mobile devices check in with Jamf Pro.

  • Manually force an app to update—You can force an app to update immediately on mobile devices if there are updates available in Jamf Pro. This update only applies to managed apps on mobile devices. For more information, see Managed Content in Jamf Pro.

  • Distribute an app update—You can distribute an update for an App Store app by manually updating the version number and URL for the app in Jamf Pro. The update is distributed to computers or mobile devices the next time they contact Jamf Pro.

Note: Jamf Pro also allows you to enable automatic updates for all App Store apps or apps purchased in volume, or force all App Store apps and apps purchased in volume to update immediately. For more information, see App Store App Update Settings.

  1. Log in to Jamf Pro.

  2. (Computers only) Click Computers at the top of the page, and then click Mac App Store Apps.

  3. (Mobile devices only) Click Devices at the top of the page, and then click Mobile Device Apps.

  4. Click the app you want to update.

  5. Click Edit images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81532686/edit.png .

  6. Do one of the following:

    • Schedule automatic app updates:

      1. Select Schedule Jamf Pro to automatically check the App Store for app updates.

      2. Click Edit images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81532686/edit.png .

      3. Choose a country or region to use when syncing apps with the App Store from the App Store Country or Region pop-up menu.

      4. Set the time of day to sync apps with the App Store using the App Store Sync Time pop-up menus.

      5. Click Save images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81531754/floppy-disk.png .
        The app is updated in Jamf Pro and on computers or mobile devices in the scope based on the time you configure the app to sync with the App Store.

    • Automatically force an app update:

      1. Select Automatically Force App Updates.

      2. Click Save images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81531754/floppy-disk.png .
        The app is updated automatically on computers or mobile devices in the scope each time they check in with Jamf Pro.

    • (Mobile devices only) Manually force an app update:

      1. Click Force Update.

      2. Click Save images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81531754/floppy-disk.png .
        The app is updated immediately on computers or mobile devices in the scope if an update is available in Jamf Pro.

    • Distribute an app update:

      1. Enter the new version number and URL.

        Important: Do not change the bundle identifier. Jamf Pro uses the existing bundle identifier to distribute the update.

      2. Click Save images/docs.jamf.com/10.24.1/jamf-pro/administrator-guide/images/download/thumbnails/81531754/floppy-disk.png .
        The update is distributed the next time computers or mobile devices in the scope contact Jamf Pro.

Removing an App Store App or an App Purchased in Volume

You can use Jamf Pro to remove an app from a computer or mobile device. Removing an app from both a computer or mobile device involves removing targets from the scope of the app. For more information, see Scope.

For computers, removing targets from the scope of the app revokes the app license (if applicable) but does not remove the app from the computer. To completely remove the app from the computer, the app must be manually dragged to the Trash on the target computer.

For mobile devices, after removing targets from the scope of the app, the app is removed the next time the device contacts Jamf Pro.

Related Information

For related information, see the following sections in this guide:

For related information, see the following Best Practice Workflows for Jamf Pro:

Controlling Distribution of iOS and tvOS Apps
Find out how to restrict iOS and tvOS apps using Jamf Pro.

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