Autopilot - Improve Device Naming Options
When importing Autopilot devices in Intune, we would like (for us and the OEM) to be able to assign machine names against each device that is imported.
Sadly %Rand% or %Serial% is not sufficient for a lot of our use cases (e.g. IT labs). We use location identifiers in the device name for our fixed device estate (7000 devices) - this allows us to create dynamic device groups based on location, room, lab, etc. which in turn is used for policy/app control (e.g. licensing, etc.).
In the file used to import the device it would be good to have an additional tag option, e.g.:
Device Serial Number,Windows Product ID,Hardware Hash, Order ID, Device Name,
Yes, this is really needed. Right now you can actually make a “Device Name” column in the .CSV you import, and it does not report an error.
The Device Name imported is ignored however, so you still have to click on the created device and set the Device Name manually before you let it autopilot. Then that device name is used and works as intended going forward.
So please, respect the .CSV import of “Device Name” since you already allow it, and set it on the device as intended.
I would like to point out there are AT LEAST 6 or seven other topics very similar to this one...Improved Windows 10 Device Naming, and only one of them has a comment from MS, and that comment does not address the overall lack of capabilities of device naming.
I think it's important that
1) Whatever device naming capabilities are available, they should occur BEFORE any AD or AAD Join, so the abilities are available to both domain join options.
2) If there is a record for the device already in AD or AAD, then there should be an option to retain that name, as opposed to renaming every time a refresh is completed.
3) More options to set a template for naming for BOTH AD and AAD beyond %RAND% and %Serial%
* WMI - The ability to use WMI in naming is very helpful (Make, Model, Desktop/Laptop, etc.)
* PS/BAT Script - This may currently be an option after the fact for AAD Joined devices, but trying to change the name of a computer already joined to on-prem AD is not nearly as trivial, and requires a reboot. The ability to create and set the name before AD or AAD join via script would be much more helpful.
* Group Tag - The ability to access and parse the Group Tag from Autopilot import is helpful to collect info about the device to use (may have limited possibilities with Dynamic Groups, but I stress 'limited') Regular expressions might be helpful to use with the Group Tag
* Ability to define static names
For example, our naming scheme requires a designation of type of device (Desktop, Laptop, Tablet, VM, etc), which can be handled by WMI, State (Can be handled by Group Tag), Location Code (can be handled by Group Tag), and remaining space of the serial number. Collectively, this can all be handled via a PowerShell script if the above info is available. Ideally, it can all be handled via the Intune interface if all of the above info is available, and regular expressions are available on the Group Tag.
I've been investigating using Autopilot to supplement and hopefully replace (eventually) our on-prem imaging process, but naming is a huge hold back. The naming scheme is often used in many processes, and so should not be treated lightly.
Some examples of use, based on the naming scheme I provided above, I can create SCCM collections based on a devices location.
If I'm running a report, I can use the naming convention to filter/sort based on device type, location, state, etc.
Other applications that have access to the computer name but not device info can utilize the device type from the naming scheme.
I can write scripts that can target devices directly from the naming scheme, without having to use other potentially time consuming methods such as programmatically accessing WMI, AD, SCCM, etc. to get the info.
Additionally, other departments, especially InfoSec can identify info about a device that may be critical in forensics just by looking at the name of the device (and this is the main reason why our naming policy is what it is.)
Other organizations may include the username in their device names, providing additional context for their automation and investigation processes.
There are many reasons why these capabilities are vitally necessary, and the current implementation in Autopilot can be an impediment to switch for many companies.
I hope that Microsoft will consider the many requests for a much more robust naming option, for both AAD Join and Hybrid Azure AD Join.
would be great to have different names for chassis types: https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/brandonlinton/2017/09/15/updated-win32_systemenclosure-chassis-types/
i.e. Desktops start with Desktop-xxxxxx and Laptops with Laptop-xxxxxx. AP could enumerate using WMI what type of device is used....
Simon Jones commented
Some enhancements such as a prefix followed by wifi mac address or fixed mac address would be most welcome. Whilst you can mimic this with some clever scripting, some native support would be nice.
Potentially we are talking 10000+ devices in the medium to long term and 40000 staff and students
Ditto here. Would improve Intune for operational contexts
Joanna Radley commented
We are currently looking at Intune and this would make things so much better. We have around 7000 devices & 25000 users
Jessica Verbist commented
This would be really good. We have around 5000 devices and 35,000 users
Michael Pocock commented
It would be really nice to have user attributes in the device naming options as well. Ex. Dept, samaccount, location.
Søren Højlund Peltz commented
I agree. A %AssetTag% prewriten by vendor would be nice to use, as we do today in our old SCCM environment.
Sony Prijono commented
I would also like this improvement as well. Impacts 44000 devices across 84000 users.
Aftab Chakera commented
We use printer scripts to automatically map printers based on computer names which is location-room number-device number.
I also want this improvement. Plus not only for autopilot but also for devices that ain't rolled out with autopilot.
CR RSD commented
Impacting 5,000 devices across 20,000 users.
Jim L commented
Dan Bolton commented
@Ian > 7000 devices (give or take) and 23,000 users.
Ian Woolner (EDU SSP) commented
Hi folks, as you vote for this, please add the number of impacted users. Votes count, but impacted users counts more :-)
Kevin Kaminski commented
I have no votes but agree that this can be painful for organizations. I tried to change the practice for a customer to let Windows choose the machine name but after realizing how many IT processes are attached to an assigned machine name, I would expect this to be a considerable blocking issue for other customers.