Add Apple devices to ABM Using Apple Configurator App
- This article
will guide you through the steps of adding a device to Apple Business
Manager. In the event a device isn't added to ABM during purchase, it can
be added afterwards with the Apple Configurator App. This app is not to be
confused with Apple Configurator 2 which is used to add iPhones, iPads, or
AppleTV devices to ABM.
- You can add a Mac computer with Apple silicon or
with an Apple T2 Security Chip running macOS 12 or later to
Apple Business Manager using Apple
Configurator on your iPhone, even if the devices weren’t purchased
directly from Apple or an Apple Authorized Reseller. When a Mac is set up
this way, it behaves like any other Mac already in Apple Business Manager,
with mandatory supervision and mobile device management (MDM) enrollment.
For these Mac computers that weren’t purchased directly, the user has a
30-day provisional period to release the device from Apple Business Manager,
supervision, and MDM. This 30-day provisional period begins after the Mac
restarts and is successfully enrolled in an MDM server linked to Apple
- See the useful
links section at the bottom of this document for these instructions and more
from Apple Support.
- Note: For
these instructions, you can also use an iPad.
- Connect the
iPhone to WiFi. Download and install the Apple Configurator App onto the
iPhone running iOS 15 or later. Sign
into ABM on the app using an account that has device manager
permissions or higher.
- You can pass
the iPhone's WiFi to the Mac during setup (recommended) or you can use the
alternative option below:
- Connect Mac to
internet via Ethernet cable and appropriate adapters.
Assign a new Mac
If you’ve purchased a new Mac and haven’t yet started it up, you can
begin. Otherwise, the Mac will need to be erased and reset.
- If you’re
assigning a Mac laptop, plug the Mac into a power source so it doesn’t go
to sleep during the process.
- If the Mac is connecting
to the internet using Ethernet, plug in all necessary cables and adapters.
- Start up the
- Select the
language in Setup Assistant, click Continue, then stop when you see the
Country or Region pane.
iPhone close to the Mac, then do one of the following:
- Note: You must restart the Mac if you go past the
Country or Region pane.
- Scan the image
that appears in Setup Assistant. The WiFi on the iPhone will be passed to
- Or, Click Pair
Manually in the lower-left corner of the Setup Assistant, then tap Manual
Pairing in Apple Configurator and enter the six-digit code that appears.
- The serial
number and other information about the Mac are uploaded to Apple Business
- Important: Only attempt connecting 1 MacBook at a time. All other new
MacBooks in the vicinity should be fully turned off.
- Wait for the
assignment process to complete.
- Important: If you want the Mac to enroll in MDM, don’t restart or shutdown
the Mac until you complete the task “Assign the Mac to an MDM server”.
Assign the Mac to an MDM server
- Make sure
you’ve properly configured your MDM solution so that it contains
enrollment settings and an enrollment profile for the Mac.
- Sign into Apple
Business Manager .
- Select Devices
from the sidebar, then use the filter to show only “Devices added
by Apple Configurator.”
The Mac should appear in the list. You may need to
refresh the list of devices before the newly assigned Mac appears.
- You can now
transfer the Mac to an existing MDM server in Apple Business Manager. For
more information, see the next section below.
- After the Mac
is assigned to an MDM server, you can restart the Mac to enroll it in MDM.
Assign, reassign, or unassign devices
- In Apple
Business Manager , sign
in with a user that has the role of Administrator or Device Enrollment
the sidebar, search for a device in the search field, then select the
device from the list.
- After you’ve
searched for the devices, select the total number of devices at the top of
the list, then click Edit next to Edit MDM Server .
- Do one of the
- Choose “Assign
to server,” then choose the MDM server you want to assign or reassign the
Unassign to unassign the device from an MDM server.
Note: If you select a device that is unassigned,
you won’t see the unassigned option.
- Click Continue.
- Carefully read
the dialog, then click Continue.
A new activity appears in the bottom right and
generates a list of the devices that are assigned or reassigned to the selected
MDM server or unassigned from an MDM server. You can wait for the activity to
complete, or click Close to close the window.
- Return to the
Mac device and restart it.
- To confirm that
all of the above steps have been completed successfully, begin the Out Of
The Box (OOTB) experience. After the device connects to the internet (WiFi
or Ethernet) a message will appear on screen with this logo ,
confirming the device is configured to be managed by your organization’s MDM.
Continue the OOTB and create a user profile.
- Shutdown the
Mac and prepare for it to be handed off or shipped to the end user before
their start date.
If the device fails
to prompt to install MDM profile after performing all the steps above, follow
these troubleshooting steps:
- Restart the
- Give it time.
In some cases, the Apple Business Manager server doesn’t respond to recent
changes. Wait an hour, then try again.
- Confirm the
device isn't low on battery or overheating.
- Use alternate
WiFi such as mobile hot spot or a WiFi without a splash page.
- Erase and reset
the Mac again.
If all of the above
fail, proceed with the advanced troubleshooting steps below.
- Device should
be in the OOTB (Out-of-the-Box) process and still failing to prompt to
install the MDM profile.
- Boot device into
recovery mode, open terminal, and run the following commands. Then restart
and try the setup again.
Finish the OOTB
as an un-managed device. Make sure the local profile is set for the new
user. Open terminal and run the following:
- rm -f
- rm -rf
- sudo profiles
renew - type enrollment
- Enter the
user account password. (no * will appear when typing the
- Even if this
command fails, run the next one.
- sudo profiles
- Check for a
notification in the top right. Select details to open the Profiles
page in System preferences.
- Allow the
profile to be assigned to the device. The list of profile settings will
then populate momentarily.