Monday, April 4, 2011

Tips & Tricks 4 Managing Multiple IOS devices...(part 3)

Part 3: Wi-fi setup, restrictions, & Web Clips using the ICU

Have you ever had to type in your wi-fi key by hand on more than 3 IOS devices? It is rediculous, especially with iPod touch devices! Fortunately, Apple released the Iphone Configuration Utility (ICU). The ICU allows you to create confuguration profiles that can be installed on each device. A configuration profile can install wifi, restrictions, & web clips; but it cannot sync your devices. When the profile installs on the device, the iPod or iPad will require 2 clicks, one to install and one to accept. But that beats typing in long passwords, codes, & URLs.

The ICU is a free download for Mac/PC @ http://www.apple.com/support/iphone/enterprise/

Creating a Configuration Profile - One important thing to note: It is not a good idea to put all of your settings in one profile. For example, if you have restrictions and wifi settings in one profile, but you need to remove the restriction in order to perform a task, then you will also disble the wifi. I typically add 3 profiles, one for wifi, one for restrictions, & one for webclips.


> Click on "Configuration Profiles"
>Click "New"

General Tab: Fill in these options:
  • Name
  • Indentifier (I follow apple's recomendation: ex, com.school.profilename)
  • Security (I choose "With Authorization" and fill in a authorization passcode below. This will enable you to remove this profile manually should it get in the way)

Restrictions Tab: You can play with some of these settings. Below are a few of the lessons I've
learned
  • Allow installing apps - If this box is unchecked no more apps can be added to this device, not even when wired to iTunes. I learned my lesson and now leave this checked
  • Allow use of Camera - This is important for the 4th gen iPod touch. (I create one profile just for this setting. I have some teachers that request that it be turned off.)
  • Allow in App Purchase - I turn this off.
  • Allow use of iTunes music store - I turn this off
  • Allow explicit music & podcasts - I turn this off
  • Allowed content ratings - I leave these set to "allow all"


Wifi tab: I create 1 configuration profile just for wifi. This way, if I need to change settings or turn off a restriction, I don't erase the wifi settings at the same time. Multiple wifi networks can be added by clicking the "+" at the top right.
Web clips: Web clips are shortcuts to web addresses that appear on the home screens as icons that look like apps. When clicked on they launch safari and take you straight to the address. You can add as many web clips as you want in one profile.


One last note: If you change a profile after it has been installed onto a device, it will become corrupt. If you need to make changes to a profile after you have installed it. It is better to uninstall the existing profile, create a new profile, then install the new one.