Managing your UE-V Agent Settings with Configuration Manager 2012 R2


In this blogpost I’ve described how UE-V can be used in Azure RemoteApp to collect and save user settings. This solution works in combination with the existing User Profile Management solution (User Profile Disk) used in Azure RemoteApp. In the coming blogposts I want to focus on Application Settings migration scenarios and I want to look into 3rd party solutions like AppSense and RES. In this blogpost I want to focus on managing UE-V Agent settings with Configuration Manager 2012 R2. UE-V Agent Settings can be managed through Group Policies, PowerShell and Configuration Manager. This blogpost will not focus on Group Policies and PowerShell management, but it will focus on the implementation with Configuration Manager.

In the introduction I’ve explained that beside Group Policies and PowerShell Configuration Manager can be used to manage the UE-V Agent Settings. The first step in the process of managing your UE-V Agent settings is to install the Configuration Pack for UE-V. The configuration pack can be downloaded here. The installation of the Configuration Pack is a straightforward process, I will not describe the steps in this blogpost. After the installation the next step is to configure a UE-V Client Agent policy. In this policy you configure all UE-V agent settings. This policy is created through the existing Compliance Settings Management functionality of Configuration Mananger 2012 R2. Follow these steps to create an Agent Policy baseline:

  1. Create an UevAgentConfiguration.xml file which contains all the UE-V Agent settings which can be configured. Please find below the ComputerPolicy settings which are important:
     <!-- This section controls UE-V agent policy for HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE registry items. -->
     <!-- Do not delete lines from this section. Instead use a DesiredState of 'Unmanaged' -->
     <!-- to have Configuration Manager leave setting values in their current state.-->
     <!-- DesiredState = "Set|Clear|Unmanaged" -->
     <MaxPackageSizeInBytes DesiredState="Unmanaged">0</MaxPackageSizeInBytes>
     <SettingsImportNotifyDelayInSeconds DesiredState="Unmanaged">10</SettingsImportNotifyDelayInSeconds>
     <SettingsImportNotifyEnabled DesiredState="Unmanaged">true</SettingsImportNotifyEnabled>
     <SettingsStoragePath DesiredState="Unmanaged">\\server\path</SettingsStoragePath>
     <SettingsTemplateCatalogPath DesiredState="Unmanaged">\\server\path</SettingsTemplateCatalogPath>
     <SyncEnabled DesiredState="Set">true</SyncEnabled>
     <SyncMethod DesiredState="Set">None</SyncMethod>
     <SyncTimeoutInMilliseconds DesiredState="Unmanaged">4000</SyncTimeoutInMilliseconds>
     <DontSyncWindows8AppSettings DesiredState="Set">true</DontSyncWindows8AppSettings>
     <SyncUnlistedWindows8Apps DesiredState="Unmanaged">false</SyncUnlistedWindows8Apps>
     <ContactITUrl DesiredState="Unmanaged"></ContactITUrl>
     <ContactITDescription DesiredState="Unmanaged"></ContactITDescription>
     <TrayIconEnabled DesiredState="Unmanaged">false</TrayIconEnabled>
     <FirstUseNotificationEnabled DesiredState="Unmanaged">false</FirstUseNotificationEnabled>
     <WaitForSyncOnApplicationStart DesiredState="Set">true</WaitForSyncOnApplicationStart>
     <WaitForSyncOnLogon DesiredState="Unmanaged">false</WaitForSyncOnLogon>
     <WaitForSyncTimeoutInMilliseconds DesiredState="Unmanaged">3000</WaitForSyncTimeoutInMilliseconds>

    It’s important to note that the DesiredState can have the following values: Set (the value assigned in the registry), Clear(removes the setting) and Unmanaged (The configuration item left at its current state). The states apply to the Computer and CurrentComputerUserPolicy.

  2. When you have saved your settings file, the next step is to create the UE-V Agent policy configuration item CAB file. This is done by executing the following command:

    Note: Do not execute this in a Elevated Command Prompt. The ‘UevAgentPolicyGenerator’ will ask you to elevate the session.
  3. When the .CAB file is generated, the next step is to import this file into Configuration Manager 2012 R2. Start the Configuration Manager Console
  4. Go to Compliance Settings and create a UE-V folder as a placeholder for the UE-V settings:
  5. Go to the created folder and click on Import Configuration Data
  6. Select your Agent Policy CAB file and click on Yes and Next
  7. Review the settings and click on Next
  8. The configuration should now be successfully be imported into the Configuration Manager environment
  9. You should see the following configuration item

    Note: When you want to publish a new version of the Agent Policy the revision should increase.
  10. The next step is to add the above Configuration item to a Baseline and deploy that baseling to a collection of UE-V Agents

Now the UE-V Agent settings are configured on your UE-V agents the next step is to manage the UE-V templates. For each managed application through EU-V a template should exist. Microsoft delivers a set of templates for standard applications like the Windows applications and Office. Through the UE-V Generator it’s possible to create templates for custom applications. With Configuration Manager UE-V templates are distributed using a baseline containing multiple configuration items. Each configuration item contains the discovery and remediation scripts needed to install one UE-V template. The actual UE-V template is embedded within the remediation script for distribution using standard Configuration Item functionality. Follow these steps to create an UE-V Template baseline:

  1. Create a folder and save all ‘standard’ and ‘custom’ UE-V templates to that folder.
  2. Now use the UevTemplateBaseLineGenerator.exe to generate a CAB file with configuration items for all the templates which are mentioned in the parameter ‘-Register’
    Note 1: Do not execute this in a Elevated Command Prompt. The ‘UevAgentPolicyGenerator’ will ask you to elevate the session.
    Note 2: Since this command need to be run each time a change to the templates are made I want to advise you to create a batch file with this command. Then you can re-use the batch file each time the templates are changed.
  3. When you have the CAB file follow the same steps as described for the Agent Settings Policy. The following Configuration items should be added to Configuration Manager:
  4. The next step is to add the configuration items to a baseline and deploy that baseline to the UE-V Agents

The result of above baselines can be monitored on the UE-V Agents:

Configuration Manager Client:

UE-V Agent:

One last note about the above configuration and Azure RemoteApp. If you want to use the above in combination with Azure RemoteApp you have to activate the Windows 2012 R2 operating system in the Configuration Items:

I hope that this blogpost will give you some guidance in managing UE-V agents with Configuration Manager 2012 R2. The next blogpost will focus on migrating user application settings with UE-V to Azure RemoteApp. Stay Tuned!

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