Manage configuration profiles

Configuration profiles streamline the macOS computer, iPad and iPhone configuration process. Use configuration profiles to deploy settings to Apple devices.

Configuration profiles have a .mobileconfig extension and are XML files containing payloads. Payloads manage specific settings on Apple devices. A configuration profile can contain more than one payload and an Apple device can have more than one configuration profile. 

Using configuration profiles, you can apply and control a wide variety of settings, including:

  • Configuring the device's network settings.
  • Applying default Microsoft Office configuration.
  • Ensuring the user complies with company policy by restricting access to specific tasks.

For more information about the functions available through configuration profiles, see the Apple Configuration Profile Reference guide and Microsoft Mac preferences.

Using configuration profiles in Device Management for Apple

When your devices are enrolled in DMA, you can install your configuration profiles on the devices using the following steps:

Device Management for Apple is not supported on devices using macOS 10.12 or earlier. You cannot deploy configuration profiles to those devices using N-central.

  1. Create your configuration profiles.
  2. Upload configuration profiles to DMA.
  3. Install the configuration profiles on the devices where you need them.

You can also Edit, download, or delete configuration profiles in DMA.

Apple supervision (configured through Apple Business Manager, Apple School Manager, or Configurator 2) is designed for company owned devices and provides greater control over the restrictions available through payloads.

Payload keys marked as "Supervised only" under "Value" in the Apple or other vendor's tool documentation are only applied on devices that are under Apple supervision, they are ignored on unsupervised devices.

If the payload key "Value" does not include the "Supervised only" reference, then the key is supported on both supervised and unsupervised devices.

For more information, see Apple device supervision.

Although we provide the mechanism to deploy custom profiles through Device Management for Apple, we are not responsible for custom profiles made or used in conjunction with this product. We are not liable for loss incurred from system, hardware or data loss. It is the customer or profiles developer's responsibility to verify the integrity, actions and impact of any custom profiles.

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Updated: Mar 26, 2024