Picture this. You're the owner of a thriving business and you've handed out smartphones and tablets to your staff. Using 2X MDM, you've added all the apps your staff need to get their work done. Unfortunately, some of your staff have taken a liking to playing games on their devices in the company toilets, while others are constantly on the Facebook app. Your smile has turned into a frown and your employees productivity has disappeared down the loo they were sitting on.
What do you do in this situation? You could take the devices off your staff, but then nothing would get done. That's where 2X MDM comes in! It comes with a cool blacklist apps feature, which allows you to control which apps are downloaded on your devices. There's also a whitelist feature and I'm now going to show you how you can blacklist apps and whitelist apps by using 2X MDM. If you've already got an account, log in to your dashboard. If you don't have an account, you can signup for a free account here.
When you decide to use a blacklist, you define which apps you are not allowed to install on your mobile device in contrast to whitelists in which you list the apps that you are allowed to install. The procedure for adding an app to the blacklist is pretty simple. Let's take a look:
- Click on the "Group Policies" node and select the group of devices that you want to create a blacklist for. For the purpose of this example we will use the "Accounts" group. Then click on the "Application Control" tab.
- To add an application to the blacklist check the "Blacklist" check box and click on the "Add Application" button.
CAUTION: you can only use either a whitelist or a blacklist in a group policy, you cannot use both!
- As you can see you have a wide selection of where to add your application from, ranging from an APK file all the way to selecting it from the whitelisted or blacklisted apps (these lists hold all the whitelisted and all the blacklisted applications installed on all devices and all groups so you can choose to add an application from there, rather than getting the links from Google play and adding them one by one). By using whitelists and blacklists you will soon build your own database of forbidden and permitted applications so you won’t have to do this every time, only when a new app appears which you want to forbid or allow.
- To add an application to the blacklist (think of it as list of applications that are forbidden) check the "Blacklist" check box and click the "Add Application" button.
- Select the location from which you want to add the application to the blacklist. We will use Google Play store for this example.
- Navigate to Google Play (https://play.google.com/store) and search for an app. We will use "angry birds" as an example for this tutorial. Once you get the result list for your search click on the application that you want to add to the blacklist.
- Select and copy the URL link (shown in the red box above) and then return to your 2X MDM console.
- Copy and paste the URL into the "Google Play App Link" field and press "Add". After that click the "Apply" button and you will receive a confirmation message notifying you that your application policy has been applied.
- The application has now been added to your blacklist.
With whitelists you can control which apps you allow to be installed on your device. You don't have to install all the applications on your whitelist, but think of your whitelist as a menu in a restaurant where you can only order what is on the menu. It's the same here! You can only install apps that are on your whitelist.
To put an application on your whitelist follow these simple steps:
- Navigate to Google Play (https://play.google.com/store) and search for an app. We searched for "2X" in this tutorial. What you need is the URL to the application which is the Blue line shown in the example above. Right click and copy the line then go back to your Mobile Device Management console.
- Copy and paste the URL into the "Google Play App Link" field, press "Add" and then click "Apply" .
- You will receive a confirmation message that the application policy has been applied and here you can see the whitelist created for the "Accounts" group. You can configure a different whitelist for each group using 2X MDM
- You have just added an application to the whitelist!