iOS 9.2 + MDM apps = bad things?

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Apple has published a knowledge base article identifying a problem with the iOS 9.2 update released last week:

If apps don‘t finish installing using Mobile Device Management (MDM) and iOS 9.2

When you use Mobile Device Management (MDM) to install an app in iOS 9.2, the installation might not finish.

This can happen if the MDM server requests the list of managed apps on the device before the installation is complete. Other MDM commands to your device will succeed unless they are behind an incomplete installation. To resolve the issue, clear the MDM server queue of any of the following commands:

  • Installing or updating apps (InstallApplication)
  • Returning the list of managed apps (ManagedApplicationList)

Apple plans to resolve this issue in a future software update.

MDM providers I spoke with today said the 9.2 update is causing "havoc" with customers. Note that Apple is still signing iOS 9.1, so updated devices can still be downgraded.

The (non-NDA protected) Developer portal today listed iOS 9.2.1. No public word yet on whether 9.2.1 fixes this MDM issue. (But I would wager it does.)

Can Enterprise App Read its MDM Configuration file

bishal_lf's picture
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I have the following situation -

There is a school which distribute number of iPads to students, which deploy in-house app for student.
Basically the app will display the PDFs, Images and Videos form remote server.

Now the challenge is that, Class 1 student needs to fetch PDfs, Images and Videos form one link
where as Class 2 student needs to fetch PDfs, Images and Videos form another link.

Hence the app need to know which device group, the current device is enrolled into.
And the device Groups info is set via MDM server.

So the question is - is there anyways enterprise app can get information from MDM server about the device group it is enrolled in, so that it can change its app feature as per device group ?


iPad Pro released today...first iPad for the desktop?

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Courtesy of Horace at Asymco.

iOS 9.1 patches 49 security vulnerabilities

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iOS 9.1 is out and according to Apple's security notice it patches 49 vulnerabilities. Get your updaters ready!

iOS 9.1 is available

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Apple today released iOS 9.1 many, many devices. From the release notes:

This release includes new features, improvements and bug fixes, including:

  • Live Photos now intelligently senses when you raise or lower your iPhone, so that Live Photos will automatically not record these movements
  • Over 150 new emoji characters with full support for Unicode 7.0 and 8.0 emojis
  • Improved stability including CarPlay, Music, Photos, Safari, and Search
  • Improved performance while in Multitasking UI
  • Fixes an issue that could cause Calendar to become unresponsive in Month view
  • Fixes an issue that prevented Game Center from launching for some users
  • Resolves an issue that zoomed the content of some apps
  • Resolves an issue that could cause an incorrect unread mail count for POP mail accounts
  • Fixes an issue that prevented users from removing recent contacts from new mail or messages
  • Fixes an issue that caused some messages to not appear in Mail search results
  • Resolves an issue that left a gray bar in the body of an Audio Message
  • Fixes an issue that caused activation errors on some carriers
  • Fixes an issue that prevented some apps from updating from the App Store

For information on the security content of this update, please visit this website:

Apple overlaps iOS versions from 7 to 28 days; the average is 13 days

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Want to downgrade your device to iOS 8.4.1? Yesterday you could, but today you can't.

This is because Apple keeps a tight leash on iOS updates. During the install process, the device (or iTunes, or Configurator, or GroundControl) must verify some information with Apple, specific to both the device and the iOS build. Apple's servers analyze the info, then send back a one-time key to permit the installation. So at any time, Apple can stop "signing" the iOS update, effectively stopping all installs.

(This process doesn't affect you if you are already running the OS, only if you are installing or re-installing it.

After a new release, Apple always shuts down the old release. But it doesn't shut it down immediately. It waits a week or two first. I don't know the exact reason for the "signing window" to stay open. Maybe it's to give extra time for companies in the middle of a large deployment to get organized. Maybe it's to allow individuals who accidentally upgraded too early to change their minds. But when Apple stops signing that old release, it effectively forces your hand, and any iOS install then MUST go to the latest version.

Unfortunately, Apple has never announced in advance when it will stop signing an older release. This makes planning, well, a challenge.

To help (a little), we've compiled a history of how long Apple's kept that window open, after an upgrade. Maybe history will be a guide.

iOS Version Days as latest version Days still signed after update
iOS 9.0.2 n/a n/a
iOS 9.0.1 7 days n/a
iOS 9 7 days 7 days
iOS 8.4.1 34 days 14 days
iOS 8.4 44 days 11 days
iOS 8.3 83 days 7 days
iOS 8.2 30 days 27 days
iOS 8.1.3 41 days 16 days
iOS 8.1.2 49 days 14 days
iOS 8.1.1 21 days 9 days
iOS 8.1 29 days 14 days
iOS 8.0.2 25 days 7 days
iOS 8.0.1 1 day 0 days
iOS 8 7 days 28 days
iOS 7.1.2 79 days 9 days

iOS 9.0.2 out (so was iOS 9.0.1, briefly)

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Apple yesterday released iOS 9.0.2, on top of iOS 9.0.1 a couple of days ago. (We forgot to post that!) iOS 9.0.2 patched a lock screen security vulnerability, and fixed a couple of bugs.

Release notes for iOS 9.0.2:

This update contains bug fixes and improvements including:

  • Fixes an issue with the setting to turn on or off app cellular data usage
  • Resolves an issue that prevented iMessage activation for some users
  • Resolves an issue where an iCloud Backup could be interrupted after starting a manual backup
  • Fixes an issue where the screen could incorrectly rotate when receiving notifications
  • Improves the stability of Podcasts

iOS 9.0.1 had the following to say:

This update contains bug fixes including:

  • Fixes an issue where some users could not complete setup assistant after updating
  • Fixes an issue where sometimes alarms and timers could fail to play
  • Fixes an issue in Safari and Photos where pausing video could cause the paused frame to appear distorted
  • Fixes an issue where some users with a custom APN setup via a profile would lose cellular data

Downloads of the latest IPSW for each device is available from our database of iOS Devices.

Always-On-VPN and global proxy not working in iOS 9

klatuu's picture
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We use Always-On VPN with IKE 2 to reach our internal networks. Our internal networks can reach outside web servers only via http/https through our company proxy. This worked perfect until iOS 8.4.1. Some users upgraded their machines to iOS 9 and they told us "The internet is not working". We tested it and couldn't see any traffic to our proxies. iPads/iPhones try to resolve DNS and reach the servers direct. But our internal DNS Servers are not connected to the internet DNS Servers.
Just tested the function with iOS 9.0.2.

Still not working ! Very serious bug for company use of iOS devices.

Devices Intermittently Dropping Wifi

nberrios's picture
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Hey All,

We have been experiencing an issue on our campus where Apple devices, and Apple devices only, are disconnecting and reconnecting to our wireless network.

This has caused huge issues for our teachers who are streaming content to Apple TVs. Every 5-10 minutes the wifi drops, causing whatever they are playing to stop and terminates the connection to the Apple TV.

We've experienced this issue with iPhones, iPads and Macs, both managed and not. We also have Dell desktops, Chrome books, and surface tablets deployed in the school and none of them seem to be experiencing an issue.

My network admin isn't sure where to start trouble shooting as it is only Apple devices experiencing the issue. I do know we use all Cisco Enterprise level hardware for the routers.

Any direction would be much appreciated!


GroundControl is hiring 1-2 mobility engineers

Aaron Freimark's picture
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The next phase of GroundControl is beginning. I'm looking for 1-2 mobility engineers to work with me, helping large enterprises implement our software and save them from a world of pain. Must have MDM experience with Apple iOS devices. Best if you live in the New York area, too, but would consider remote workers. We are a small team today so you'd have a lot of impact!

E-mail me at aaron / at / groundctl / dot / com if interested.

Provisioning Supervisor Mode outside of OS X

mdmisthebest's picture
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Does anyone know anything about how you can provision a device into Supervisor Mode a la Apple Configurator on Windows or other platforms? Thanks!

No-Apple ID, App Distribution by Device: Which MDMs have this already?

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One of the most anticipated features of iOS is the ability to distribute VPP apps to devices without Apple IDs, as long as certain conditions are met: device is on iOS 9, app was purchased through VPP, app developer opted in, MDM supports this feature.

What is unclear at this time is WHICH MDM providers support this feature today. As far as I can tell, very few were ready on day 1. Was yours?

Does your MDM support per-Device app distribution? Please post your MDM vendor and your experiences here. Maybe we can get them to prioritize this feature.

Server 5.0.3 Profile Manager - A server error has occurred after upgrade

betolley's picture
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I upgraded to Server 5.0.3 yesterday. I previously was unable to sync new VPP purchased apps(Last couple weeks) and apple support said I had to updated before VPP would work again. So I upgraded. I am able to login and the apps are there. But randomly I get grey screen or "A server error has occurred." while working. Usually I get one of those errors instead of the page or button I click. I have monitored the log files after hitting load until I get the error: The server starts running version slow at this time. It is a i7 with 16gb of ram. Any suggestions? Any help appreciated.


(log follows below)

Resigning App on XCode 7 for IOS 9

Prashant3100's picture
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Does any one have issues with Resigning App on XCode 7 for IOS 9? I am seeing I am not able to install the app resigned on Xcode 6.1.4 on iOS 9. same when i do resign with xcode 7.

any suggestion?

Warning pop ups in iOS9

Creeze's picture
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In iOS9, when you run in-house apps, a warning pops up that the developer is not reliable, and you need to go to Settings - General - Profile and mark the profile as "trusted" to run the app. Is this the only way to run the app? How to prevent this warning from showing up?

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