Deploying Windows 10/11 devices with Windows Autopilot and Microsoft Intune is worth looking into. Windows Autopilot can automatically configure these devices and enroll them in your organization. In this post you will learn how to enroll test devices into Windows Autopilot.
For this how-to I am using a virtual machine. However, this guide can also be used to enroll physical devices with Windows Autopilot as well. Adding and removing devices from the service is performed from the Microsoft Endpoint admin center manually.
What is Windows Autopilot
According to Microsoft, Windows Autopilot is a collection of technologies used to set up and pre-configure new devices, getting them ready for productive use. Autopilot (Microsoft Autopilot) can be used to reset, repurpose, and recover devices. The Autopilot solution enables an IT department to achieve the above with little to no infrastructure to manage, with a process that’s easy and simple.
- Configure Azure Active Directory automatic enrollment (Documentation).
- Configure Azure Active Directory branding (Documentation).
- You need an eligible Microsoft 365 license or evaluation license.
- Configure Deployment Profile in Microsoft Intune (Documentation).
- Microsoft Azure Virtual Machine or an hypervisor (VirtualBox, VMWare or Parallels).
Need help fulfilling the requirements? Comment below or send me a message.
Virtual machine installation
To get started, you can try it out yourself using a virtual machine. Use any hypervisor you like, as long as it supports a Windows 10 virtual machine. Download the official Windows 10 ISO. Install the machine as you normally would and make sure you end up on the Windows 10 desktop.
Gather hardware information
- Log into your Windows 10 virtual machine and open an elevated PowerShell prompt.
- Run the PowerShell script below to retrieve the required information to add the virtual machine to the Windows Autopilot program.
- As a result, it gathers these values from the device:
- Device Serial number
- Windows Product ID
- Hardware Hash
- Manufacturer name
- Device model
- And finally, we have the AutopilotHWID.csv file in the C:\Windows\system32 directory.
Save the file. In one of the next steps we upload this file into Microsoft Intune to register the device within the Windows Autopilot service. In order to make this happen, copy and paste the file back onto your own computer or use a USB stick.
Reset VM to Out-Of-Box-Experience
Now it is time to reset our virtual machine while in the meantime we are uploading the device information into the portal. By resetting, we will transition back to the Out-Of-Box-Experience so it is be ready to be configured by Windows Autopilot.
- On the Windows 10 machine, go to Settings > Update & Security > Recovery.
- Under Reset this PC, click on Get started.
- Select Remove everything and choose Just remove my files.
- When asked how to reinstall Windows, select Local reinstall.
- Finally, click on Reset.
Enroll test devices into Windows Autopilot
During the reset of the virtual machine, we are importing the Hardware ID in Windows Autopilot. Follow the steps below to get that sorted.
- Navigate to the Microsoft Endpoint Manager admin center.
- In the left menu, select Devices.
- Go to Enroll devices.
- Select Manage Windows Autopilot devices.
In this overview you keep track of all imported devices. You will see your recently imported device for now. However, as soon as you import more and more devices, this list will obviously grow.
There is a possibility to automatically register existing devices to the Autopilot program. For instance, almost every OEM offers this feature for free. So don’t hesitate to explore the possibilities for your organization!
Now, let us continue.
- Click on Import and upload the your CSV that you have generated from our virtual machine.
- Your device should be visible within a few minutes.
Verify profile status in Windows Autopilot
It is important to verify the import status before proceeding with the enrollment in Microsoft Intune. So please don’t start deploying your new virtual machine until you are sure that the Profile Status is set to Assigned.
When successfully verified, you can now start your Windows 10 virtual machine and start enrolling the device with Windows Autopilot!