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VMware User Environment Manager and ADMX Settings

JeffSmallby Jeffrey Davidson

In this blog entry, I will walk through how to configure ADMX settings within the VMware® User Environment Manager™ Management Console. Additionally, I will discuss how User Environment Manager ADMX settings work together with existing Group Policy configurations.

In this example, I will be setting Google Chrome as the default browser using the ADMX settings.

First open the User Environment Manager Management Console. Make sure the management console is pointing to the correct environment. I recommend making configuration changes in a test environment, and then moving to production after validation.

In some cases, you may need to add the specific ADMX file that contains the settings you wish to configure. For this example, we are using an ADMX file for Google Chrome that is supplied separately by Google. Therefore, we need to add it to the list of templates.

This is done by navigating to the “User Environment” tab and choosing “Manage Templates.” When the “Manage ADMX Templates” dialog box opens, select “Add File,” choose the ADMX file needed for the configuration, then choose Close. The screenshot below shows the template for Chrome has been added.


Now we are ready to configure our browser setting. Navigate to the “User Environment” tab and click “Create.” You will see a dialog box open as shown in the screenshot below. You will need to select a name for this ADMX configuration. For this example, I’ve used “Chrome.”

Choose “Select Categories” and choose the specific user configuration branch that contains the setting you wish to configure. Then choose “OK” to close the dialog box.


We now need to configure the specific setting that will be applied during user login.

Click “Edit Policies” and navigate to the setting you wish to configure. Set it according to your needs, and then close the “ADMX-based Settings” dialog. In the example below, I’ve enabled the option to make Chrome the default browser.


You should now see the settings that have been configured. Click “Save” to store the ADMX setting. The example below shows the default browser setting has been configured.


After you have saved your ADMX configuration, you should see it in the list of ADMX-based settings.


Now that the configuration is complete, there are some important things to note about how the ADMX settings are applied.

User Environment Manager only supports user-based ADMX settings. This means other settings like computer settings or policies that reference Group Policy (GPO) client-side extensions are not supported.

At logon, User Environment Manager runs after the GPO settings are applied. That means it can see if there is a setting conflict between an Active Directory Group Policy setting and an ADMX setting. In case of a conflict, User Environment Manager does nothing. Active Directory Group Policy settings take precedence.

At logoff, User Environment Manager will undo all settings it applied, unless there is an “undo at logoff” option available (such as for drive mapping and shortcuts). This means that User Environment Manager will undo all ADMX-based settings, folder redirections, and so on, applied at the beginning of the session.

This activity is also logged in the log file if it is set to debug mode.

Conflicting ADMX settings are also logged in a specific ADMX log file. If you want to enable this specific ADMX log file (which also logs Folder Redirection, Horizon Smart Policies, etc.), use this VMware Knowledge Base article:

“VMware UEM FlexEngine Advanced Settings (ADMX template) (2145286)”

Below is a screenshot of the setting enabled if you implement the advanced setting referenced in the Knowledge Base article above.


Jeffrey Davidson, Senior Consultant, VMware EUC. Jeffrey has over 15 years of IT experience and joined VMware in 2014. He is also a VCP5-DCV and VCP5-DT. He is a strong advocate of virtualization technologies, focusing on operational readiness with customers.

3 thoughts on “VMware User Environment Manager and ADMX Settings

  1. Dan Vinci

    “if there is a setting conflict between an Active Directory Group Policy setting and an ADMX setting. In case of a conflict, User Environment Manager does nothing.”

    Is there a way to override this? I sometimes want to set a setting in UEM that overrides what is set in the domain wide GPO (without resorting to new OUs , WMI filters or permissions)

  2. Pingback: VMware User Environment Manager and ADMX Settings – VMware News and Updates

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