What is the EBF Migrator and When Should You Use It?
Migrations from one MDM environment to another can be incredibly stressful. They become even more difficult if your group has a particularly large fleet of devices that need to be migrated. Device migrations can become a major time suck when each device needs to be manually unenrolled in a legacy MDM then re-enrolled into Intune.
If you’re anything like me, you want a way to simplify and better manage your migration, both for your user experience and your sanity. I’ve found that the EBF migrator tool can help do just that.
What is EBF and how can it help with an Intune Migration?
Let’s start at square one. The EBF Migrator tool is a SaaS utility that aids migration from your legacy MDM to a new Intune environment. The platform works to migrate devices from a variety of MDM solutions including but not limited to Jamf, Workspace ONE (AirWatch), MobileIron, and Maas360. Then the tool will enrol devices into your Intune environment seamlessly and in bulk, negating the need to address each device in your fleet manually.
Additionally, the tool allows for extensive reporting on your migration to Intune. Without a reporting tool, it’s very difficult to check the status of each device in your migration. As you can imagine, manual reporting on the process of an integration can quickly become a logistical nightmare.
How does it work?
As mentioned before, EBF can work with in conjunction with MDMs when migrating to Intune. The migration process begins with EBF sending an email to the end users announcing that the migration is taking place. Included in the email is a button that triggers the start of the device’s migration from one MDM to another. Once clicked, Workspace ONE sends a command to the device to unenroll.
When the unenrolment is complete, EBF will guide the user to download the Intune Company Portal from the apps store. When downloaded, EBF will prompt the device to begin enrolling in Intune.
Check out the video below to see how EBF wipes a device from a legacy MDM and enrols it in Intune.
When to Use the EBF Migrator
As with most tools and processes, there are appropriate times to leverage specific technology and times where certain programs just aren’t the right fit. EBF is no different. It’s important to know when it is advantageous to use EBF before jumping in. If your program isn’t well suited to use the tool you may be exposing your group to risk and frustration.
The Best Scenario for EBF – BYO Devices or Non-Corporate Owned Devices
In my experience, EBF works well with non-corporate, BYO (personal) devices. The reasoning is there’s no need for a factory reset of the device when running EBF to migrate from one MDM to another.
If the end-user of a BYO device refuses to follow the steps for re-enrolment into Intune on their device, they simply won’t have access to sensitive resources, ensuring your important company data is kept safe and secure.
The Unideal Scenario for using EBF
In my experience, corporate devices, especially those using iOS, are not ideal for using EBF to migrate. In these scenarios, the device is supervised or enrolled in the Apple Devices Enrolment program and is a fully managed device. Thus, the device must be enrolled from a factory reset status.
Without a factory reset, users can bypass management controls by unenrolling the device. This leaves your company at greater risk of a breach and rogue employees. The EBF tool cannot factory reset a device, so either your company must be ok with increased risk and skip the factory reset, or must skip EBF in favour of better security.
In essence, I don’t not recommend migrating devices using EBF if there is no factory reset option. The risk for the device to become unmanaged and rogue is simply too high.
What EBF won’t automate
If you are in a situation to leverage EBF, you will still have work to do. EBF is an automation assistance utility and works very well for that specific purpose. However, it is not a free pass on other workstreams common to device migrations.
If you are tasked with overseeing a device migration program, the first challenge you should be aware of is communications. User communications can make or break a project. First, you need to level-set expectations of privacy with employees by describing what IT can and cannot do with a personal smartphone – you’ll need to use non-technical language, which can be a challenge.
Next is the ‘batching’ or grouping of users into migration groups. You’ll need to consider available helpdesk resources, network bandwidth, frequency, use case complexity and many other criteria when setting up your user batches. Again, the EBF tool cannot do this for you.
The EBF tool is only one part of a successful migration program.
The Mixed Bag Migration
Finally, the reality is that an enterprise scale MDM migration is likely to have a mix of use cases. We see this commonly when guiding large enterprises through MDM migrations. Some use cases may benefit from EBF while others will not. It is a good idea to bring in a skilled team to guide your company through a migration.
It will lead to a better user experience and better outcome for your business.
Every migration is unique and it’s important to be discerning when selecting tools to streamline the process. If the EBF Migrator is the right fit for your project, make sure to leverage it. It will surely ease the pain of unenrolling and re-enrolling devices during a migration.
If you are interested in the EBF tool for your migration or want to talk to an expert to help with planning, or even migration users themselves please contact us.
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My interest in Information Technology even at young age made me decide to take a degree in Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering and my passion motivated me to complete it. Having been in the industry for 15 years now, I think my interest in it has matured just like me. I feel grateful that I can pursue this passion on a daily basis while still being able to spend quality time with my family.