My Mac isn’t enrolled in DEP, what should I do to manage it?

My Mac isn’t enrolled in DEP, what should I do to manage it?

Mosyle Team
written by Mosyle Team


Deployment using DEP and Apple School Manager offers many possibilities to IT admins, including streamlining this process, which is important when it comes to the educational environment in which the IT department needs to put time and energy on training teachers and manage educational content.

But sometimes the macOS devices are not enrolled into an Apple School Manager/DEP account. For example, when devices were not bought directly from Apple, or the Mac is a staff or student-owned device and the school doesn't have the device ownership.

Even without DEP, you still need to deploy and manage this Mac device in your school and district, applying all the educational privacy and policies using the mobile device management (MDM) solution. So what should you do?

In this article, you'll see how you can easily enroll the Mac device into the MDM solution, if it isn't enrolled into DEP or ASM. Learn how it’s possible to have a good experience while managing your Macs too!

But first, a quick reminder about Apple School Manager and DEP

When organizations such as schools, universities and companies acquire devices directly from Apple, the devices can be automatically enrolled into an Apple program that is called Device Enrollment Program (DEP). In the case of K-12 institutions, the DEP currently makes part of the Apple School Manager platform, a portal where IT administrators are able to manage not only devices, but also user data and content.

Apple’s DEP works simply like this: an organization like a School, District or University purchases the devices directly from Apple, or through an authorized reseller and as a part of their process, each device becomes enrolled into the DEP program.

This allows them to be associated with the server of a mobile device management solution, which will streamline the enrollment process. It allows for automatic enrollment of Apple devices. When using DEP hand-in-hand with an MDM Solution, you can deploy and manage your Apple devices efficiently and all from one location.

Currently, you are not able to have Mac devices in the DEP account, if they were not acquired from Apple, a participating Apple Authorized Reseller, or a cellular carrier. However, if you have donated iPads or other iOS and tvOS devices that were not bought through those channels, you can add them to your DEP account using Apple Configurator 2. If you also have this scenario in your K-12 institution, read this guide to understand how to do that, to help speed up your deployment using Apple School Manager and the MDM solution.

How do I enroll a Mac device not in DEP into the MDM solution

In this case, the method you are going to use to enroll the non-DEP macOS devices into the device management solution, is the manual Enrollment using an URL. This makes it very easy to enroll the Mac device into the MDM solution as a generic device from the K-12 institution - if you use Mosyle Manager, that's called limbo status. Just copy and paste the Enrollment URL provided by the MDM solution in the device's browser.

Then, you can assign the Mac device to a user, if it is part of a 1:1 program. If the Mac will be used by different students in a laboratory, you are able to configure it as a shared device. Do you want to learn more about enrolling your Macs using Mosyle Manager, the MDM solution made exclusively for K-12? We share all the enrollment methods available to enroll Mac devices in this article. You can also access your Getting Started.

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