PolicyPak: Manage Shockwave Player using Group Policy, SCCM, KACE, LanDesk, etc.

Shockwave is a little application, but requires big management. You’ll want to make sure your software renderer is optional and compatible with exactly what you have. You don’t want users being able to get prompted for an upgrade (you KNOW that’s a helpdesk call waiting to happen) and you likely don’t want to provide anonymous data to Adobe (based upon your corporate policies.) With PolicyPak our Pre-Configured PolicyPak for Shockwave Player, you get full control over what users can and cannot do.

Manage Shockwave 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 use PolicyPak to manage Shockwave Player 11.

I’ve already got Shockwave installed on my computer as a plugin for Internet Explorer but we could be running it with Firefox or another favourite web browser.  As you can see I’m just a regular user here.  I’m logged on as a guy called “eastsalesuser4.” Since Shockwave is a browser plugin, it’s only utilized when the browser needs it for an HTML page so let’s visit a website that will force Shockwave to initiate within my browser.  We’ll go to a basic site like http://www.adobe.com/shockwave/welcome to do this.

As you can see here I have a little window within this webpage in which the Shockwave player is displaying a visual confirmation that Shockwave is installed and working within my web browser.  If I right click on that window and go to “Properties” we can see the configurable options for this application.

Like other Adobe applications I’ve got the option of turning on the automatic update service which you likely don’t want to enable.   Instead, you, the IT manager should be in charge of when applications are updated – Not your users.

I’ve also got a box that gives me several options for my machine will handle accelerated video files.  As you can see I can choose a software renderer which puts a strain on my CPU as it will have to perform all of the processes required to display a high end 3D image.  If my computer happens to have one of those super-duper high end video cards, then I can select the appropriate graphic industry programming interface.  Obviously I don’t want my users to muddle with this setting.

We’ll go ahead and right click over our “East Sales Users” here, “Create a GPO” and we’re going to call it “Lock Down Shockwave11.” So this GPO is now associated with the “East Sales Users.” I’ll right click over. I’ll click “Edit…” here. I’ll dive down under “User Configuration,” “PolicyPak/Applications/New/Application.” There it is, “PolicyPak for Shockwave” along with our other applications like “WinZip,” “Media Player,” “Firefox” and some other things.

Let’s open up the GPO editor and configure our settings now for Shockwave.  As you can see the default is for the Automatic Update Service to be turned on but a user can still uncheck that box so let’s uncheck and recheck the box.  The selection is now underlined which means that PolicyPak will deliver this checkbox.

Although I’m sure Adobe would love our information, I’m sure your security policy is such that you won’t want your information leaving your company – anonymous or not.  So, let’s uncheck that box.  Let’s choose to “Allow backward compatibility” as well.

Let’s say we are configuring Shockwave for a school system network and we don’t have those fancy accelerated video cards so we are going to select “Always Use Software Renderer.”  And now for the real beauty of PolicyPak, now that we have configured our value settings within the interface, we are going to lock it all down so our users can’t change a thing.  With the simple motion of right clicking my mouse I am going to choose “Disable whole tab in target application.”  This will prevent users from accessing these settings, preventing them from making any changes to my selections.

Now I will go back to my client machine, we’ll get a command prompt and run “gpupdate.” Now again, we could envision the user just logging on for the very first time or changing job roles or getting a new computer. As soon as they do, they’re going to get these settings. I just happen to be using gpupdate to do that.

Now that that’s done, we’ll go ahead and open a new browser and return to our Adobe Shockwave Welcome page.  Now if we go to Properties, we see that not only are our preconfigured selections displayed, but everything is greyed out so I as a user can do nothing within this entire tab.

That’s the power of PolicyPak.  That is how incredibly easy it is for you to use PolicyPak to manage and lockdown Shockwave and tons of other desktop applications.

If you’re looking for a 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 if you’re looking to get started. Talk to you soon.

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