PolicyPak: Manage and lockdown Picasa with Group Policy or SCCM

Make certain your Picasa settings are dictated and ensured using PolicyPak.You can use Group Policy, SCCM or your own systems management tool to deliver PolicyPak directives and consistently manage your applications, like Picasa. Check out this video to see how it’s done

Manage Picasa 3 with Group Policy video transcript

Hi, this is Jeremy Moskowitz, Group Policy MVP and Founder of PolicyPak Software.  In this video, we’re going to learn how to configure and lock down Picasa using PolicyPak.

I’ve already got Picasa installed on my computer, and I’m just a regular user here.  As you can see, I’m logged on as a guy called “eastsalesuser4.”  I’ll open up the application and go to Tools  | Options, and examine the configuration settings a user has access to, which can mess up your day.  If we go to “General” we have some key settings for configuring things such as application updates, file deletions and managing cache files.

Under “File Types” your users have access to an entire tab of supported file types. And, and under “Web Albums” users have access to some important settings which control synchronization.

Let’s see how we can ensure compliance and perform desktop lockdown of settings quickly using PolicyPak.  I’ll go ahead and switch over to my Management Station computer.

We’ll go ahead and right click over our “East Sales Users”, “Create a GPO” and we’re going to call it “Lock DownPicasa.”  So this GPO is now associated with the “East Sales Users.” I’ll right click over it.  I’ll click “Edit…”. I’ll dive down under “User Configuration,” “PolicyPak/Applications/New/Application.” There it is, “PolicyPak for Picasa” along with other applications like “Java,” “Flash” “Firefox,” “Skype” and lots of other important desktop applications that your users utilize every day (and you want to make more secure.).

Let’s look at our configuration tabs and decide what we want to do.  If we go to General, we will definitely want to turn off automatic updates.   To make sure that my users can’t reverse this setting, I’m going to right click on this drop down menu and select “Hide corresponding control in target application.”  This will hide the entire box from my users so that users won’t know this setting even exists.  Next I want to make sure that “Send anonymous usage stats to Google” is definitely unchecked so I’m going to quickly check it and then uncheck it.  Notice how when I initially checked this setting that the text became underlined.  That means that the setting value is going to be delivered to the user, checked or unchecked.   Then I will right click this check box and select “Disable corresponding control in target application.”  This will prevent users from modifying the setting.

Next I’ll head over to “File Types” where I want to make sure that PSD, RAW and movie files types aren’t supported so I will make sure that they are unchecked.  I’ll then go and check the remaining file types that I want supported for sure.  Finally, I will go to “Web Albums” and select a few key settings that will manage the image synchronization process.  Then I’m going to disable this entire tab of settings by right clicking on it and selecting “Disable whole tab in target application.”

Now I will go back to my client machine, we’ll get a command prompt and run “gpupdate.”  Now you could envision the user logging on for the very first time, using a Terminal Services or Citrix machine, using a VDI session, changing job roles, or getting a new computer.

PolicyPak performs the magic. To get the magic delivered, you can use Group Policy, SCCM, LanDesk, KACE or your own systems management software. We just happen to be using Group Policy to deliver PolicyPak directives in this demonstration.

Now that that’s done, let’s go ahead and reopen the application.  We can see that the settings in “General” have not only been delivered, but one of the checkboxes is completely disabled and the updates drop down menu isn’t even visible here.  Those settings are locked down and ensured.   We can then go and see that our designated file types are configured correctly and the entire tab of “Web Albums” is disabled, ensuring that these settings are locked away users.

And we are done.  That is how incredibly easy it is for you to use PolicyPak to manage and lockdown Picasa 3 and tons of other desktop applications.

You can get a free trial of PolicyPak. Just click on the “Webinar / Download” button or sign up for a webinar on the right.

Thanks so much for watching, and get in touch with us when you’re looking to get started. Talk to you soon.

Back