New ConfigMgr Application Catalogue Experience

Posted by

oldsml

I have been frustrated since the release of ConfigMgr 2012 that the visual appeal of the Application catalogue has been lacking to say the least. Yes it is functional, but some of us like a bit of form over function!

The Windows Intune Company Portal has always looked much more modern and fits in a lot better. So with the release of ConfigMgr 2012 R2 we now have the ability to use a new ‘windows store’ type application catalogue, similar to the Intune version.

I believe that you need an Intune subscription to be able to set the logo and company name, that’s where my catalogue has gotten the logo from:

new

Here’s how:

Download: http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/confirmation.aspx?id=40795 install on a 64 bit windows 8 or above machine. Remember the install path, find the SCCMCompanyPortal.appx

19-11-2013 15-02-28

Create an application, select Windows app package, point it to the .appx package and next:

19-11-2013 15-06-51

Follow through to the end of the application creation.

In order for the new app to connect to software centre we need to add a few registry keys:

  • Key = [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\CCM]
  • Value Name = PortalPackageFamily
  • Type = REG_SZ
  • Value = Microsoft.CorporateAppCenter_8wekyb3d8bbwe

And:

  • Key =[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Appx]
  • Value Name = AllowAllTrustedApps
  • Type = REG_DWORD
  • Value = 1

Create a .bat file with this:

REG ADD HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Appx /v AllowAllTrustedApps /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f
REG ADD HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\CCM /v PortalPackageFamily /t REG_SZ /d Microsoft.CorporateAppCenter_8wekyb3d8bbwe /f

Create a package in ConfigMgr with a program to run the bat file. Deploy to all Windows 8 and 8.1 clients.

You can also use DCM to deploy as well, however in my environment the APPX key did not deploy correctly.  I will follow this up in a later post.

Group Policy could also be used in this instance.

Deploy the appx application to the Windows 8 and 8.1 collection to install. You can also make it available through software centre as well. I used a required deployment to get it on all of our Windows 8 and 8.1 machines.

featured

To get a featured app, fill in the details on the application:

19-11-2013 15-35-34

This then looks like below:

project

So in all a much cleaner and visually appealing experience.

Further help and explanation can be found here: http://blogs.technet.com/b/justin_gao/archive/2013/11/16/you-need-to-know-a-new-application-deployment-experience-system-center-configuration-manager-company-portal-app.aspx