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Can you retrospectively enroll issued IOS devices in DEP/Supervised mode?

Andrew Harris1709160651


We are currently using an on-prem XenMobile deployment (v10.9) to manage a limited number of IOS devices (Approx 100).  Prior to my involvement, these device were deployed without being either setup with Apple Configurator or enrolled into Apple DEP.  We are now looking to get a better grasp on managing these devices, i.e by pushing applications, using policies to push OS updates etc, much of which needs the devices in a supervised mode. We are currently working with our carrier, to get the devices added to our DEP portal.


My question: Is it possible to take these devices under management as DEP enrolled devices, without having to recall them from the users and effectively re-issue them? The information I've found on Apple Configurator, suggests that supervising the devices via that method would require us to start afresh with the device, but I'm keen to find out if it is the same with DEP.



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Hi there,


Unfortunately, it is not possible to retrospectively put an iOS device in to Supervised mode. There are two supported methods to achieve this outcome and each method requires that the device 'start over from scratch'...


How to get an iOS device in to 'Supervised' mode...


Option 1 - enable the option to put the device in to Supervised mode when you are also using DEP to enrol iOS devices...

   - Requires that the organisation is registered with Apple for DEP (Apple Business Manager)

   - The iOS devices need to be DEP registered (devices purchased directly from Apple or from an authorised DEP reseller)

   - DEP is only active when the iOS device is fully factory reset or instead when it is brand new and being unboxed for first time use


Option 2 - connect the iOS device to Apple Configurator and place the device in to Supervised mode...

   - https://docs.citrix.com/en-us/xenmobile/server/policies/import-ios-mac-os-x-profile-policy.html


Placing a device into Supervised mode installs the selected version of iOS on the device, completely wiping the device of any previously stored user data or apps."




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Consider Apple Configurator as just a way to do DEP manually (without using a cellular provider like Verizon or AT&T). The process is the same in that if you want your devices Supervised you must factory wipe them after the Serial Number has been added to your DEP account. If you have a business account with your cellular provider you should also get DEP setup with them so that all newly purchased devices are synced with the MDM as soon as they are ordered.


EDIT: Do note that they can backup their phone and restore it after the DEP process is completed. They don't have to start completely from scratch.

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