DEM: Controlling Power options through Computer Environment

Linus Bourque/ October 10, 2023/ Dynamic Environment Manager (DEM)/ 0 comments

So as part of my work on the App Volumes and DEM class, I did do some recent discovery with Dynamic Environment Manager. A few years ago, we added Computer Environment as a manageable option. But we never discussed it in the class.

So with the updated class, we are going to talk about it (and, hopefully, do a lab). For example, if I wanted to disable the Control Panel or the Start option (remove restart/sign off, etc.), the first thing I need to do is import the ADMX files from Windows (found under c:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions) and import those into the Computer Environment section.

The first step is to go into the DEM Management Console –> go to the Computer Environment tab. If you don’t see it, check if you’ve enabled it under Additional Features. Keep in mind that this will only be available if you are using DEM Enterprise. 

DEM Configuration image

You then import the Policy Definitions. You can pull those from the DEM Manager Windows OS *OR* from your DC (copy the folder over to your DEM Manager.

Now you can create a computer environment ADMX-based setting so click on Create and then Select Categories. Here you can select the Administrative Templates you want to incorporate into your domain computers.

Once those categories are selected, you now Edit Policies. You would edit these policies similar to what you might do in AD itself. Just double-click on a policy and click Enabled.

With the policies set, you can close the ADMX-based Settings Window. You’ll then see any policies that are set in the ADMX-based Settings window.

Then you can use the Conditions tab to set a condition that would call out the computer itself; something like IP address or Group Membership. For my example, I added my instant clones to my DEM Users group so that only those computers would be impacted.

And, now that means my users can only log off using the Horizon Client. This also removes power options from Windows and means they’d have to contact their support team for any reboots.

Final thoughts on this:

  • definitely test to ensure you get the effect that you want.
  • this applies to the computers that users are using specifically.

When we often think of DEM, we usually focus on the User Environment (this comes from it’s original name of User Environment Manager) but we shouldn’t forget about the computer environment for the user as well. So take some time to explore that piece of DEM as well as you personalize user environments.

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