Jamf Now Custom Profiles: Common Uses

Learn more about Jamf Now's Custom Profiles feature: common uses, creating a custom profile and answers to some of the most frequent questions we have received.

October 28 2019 by

Jonathan Locast

This year Jamf Now rolled out the ability to deploy Custom Profiles as the latest feature of the Jamf Now Plus plan, opening up an array of possibilities to customize the management of Apple devices to fit every team’s exact needs.

Our webinar, Creating Custom Profiles, generated a lot of interest from Jamf Now users excited to learn about how they can do more with Jamf Now and the Jamf Now Plus plan. Because of this, we want to satisfy people’s interest and curiosity around the Custom Profiles feature by sharing some information around common uses (so far), creating a custom profile, and answers to some of the most frequent questions we have received.

What is the Custom Profiles feature for?

Custom Profiles allows users to create a custom profile, upload it to Jamf Now, attach it to a Blueprint and deploy to all devices associated with that Blueprint. For all of the admins that have had the need for a more detailed profile or a team with a more specific use case, Custom Profiles provides the ability to create that unique configuration for Mac, iPad and iPhone in addition to the current configuration options within Jamf Now.

To do this, users simply create their custom profile in Apple Configurator, Profile Manager or other profile creation tools, upload to Jamf Now and deploy the same way they would a Blueprint. With Custom Profiles in the Jamf Now Plus plan you will have the ability to create unlimited configurations without sacrificing the simplicity of the Jamf Now UI.

What are common uses for Custom Profiles?

Yes, Custom Profiles allows you to have unlimited configurations at your fingertips, but what are you supposed to do with this power and where does a person start? Below are some of the top uses of Custom Profiles to help you get started.

  1. Restrictions: Restrictions have long been a powerful tool for Jamf Now administrators to manage devices in a granular and efficient manner. Jamf Now supports a number of restrictions for iPad, iPhone and Mac that can help you keep your data secure and your users on task. Custom Profiles enables you to apply additional restrictions to devices.
  2. VPN deployment: Customers asked us for the ability to deploy VPN security through Jamf Now — with Custom Profiles, that is now possible. A VPN is useful for increased security when gaining access to corporate assets and apps outside of an office location.
  3. Wi-Fi: Jamf Now offers basic Wi-Fi configurations, but for people who have advanced Wi-Fi setups you can take advantage of Custom Profiles.
  4. Web content filtering: Every website has a rating, similar to movies or video games. Using web content filtering, you may put constraints around which types of websites users can visit and which they cannot.
  5. Lock screen message: This is one of the most-used examples of Custom Profiles. This displays a static custom message while the device is locked. This is useful if you want to have a lost device returned with a message like “Property of Jamf; if found please return to…"
  6. Enable firewall on macOS: This will block machines from opening certain sites that aren’t secure, helping deter malicious software from being downloaded by unknowing users. Often this is coupled with web content filtering to bring your devices to a better level of security.

Common Questions

Q: Can you use Apple Configurator 2 with macOS devices?

A: Apple Configurator will only create profiles for iPhone, iPad, and Apple TV. For macOS custom profiles, use ProfileCreator or other profile creation tool.

Q: Can I use Custom Profiles with Jamf Pro or only with the Jamf Now plan?

A: Custom Profiles is available with the Jamf Now plan and Jamf Pro. Jamf Pro is an enterprise solution that has many advanced workflows including Custom Profiles, but in a slightly different manner. We recommend reaching out to a member of our sales team to see which solution is right for you.

Q: Do custom profiles overwrite basic Jamf Now Blueprint settings?

A: Custom profiles do not overwrite Jamf Now Blueprint settings. They exist on the device alongside the Blueprint independently. However, they can be set up to interact with Blueprint settings to achieve a goal.

Custom Profiles is an extremely powerful addition for Jamf Now users to consider. It opens up a whole new world of ways to make your device management more customized to your needs. With the ability to build your profile in Apple Configurator or ProfileCreator and quickly upload it into Jamf Now for deployment, we believe the process has maintained the simplicity that Jamf Now users expect.

Whenever in doubt about how a configuration will work, we recommend referencing Apple’s Configuration Profile Reference. If you have questions as you go, reach out to Jamf Now Support.

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