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KB-3487: How to enforce a custom Mac Dock via Group Policy

Mac & PC Management Service ,  

12 April,16 at 11:11 AM

Applies to: All versions of Centrify DirectControl on Mac OS X


Is there a way to force users to only see specified apps in the Mac Dock when they log in?


This can be applied via the group policies in the following folder:
  • User Configuration / Centrify Settings / Mac OS X Settings / Dock Settings / ...
    • "Merge with user's Dock"
      • Set this to Disabled
    • "Place Applications in Dock"
      • Set this to Enabled
      • Add the desired applications via their full path and spaces intact, for example:
        • /Applications/
        • /Applications/DVD
        • /Applications/Utilities/System
With the above configuration, only the specified apps will be shown in the Dock when the user logs in.

Users will still be able to drag their own applications into the Dock while they are logged in, but the user-added icons will be removed upon logout and the Dock will be reset back to GP-configured conditions.

To stop user's from adding their own icons altogether, configure the following GP:
  • "Lock the Dock"
    • Set this to Enabled

To allow users to add and retain their own Dock icons in addition to the GP-specified icons, the following sequence needs to be followed:
  1. User logs in with "Merge with user's Dock" still set to Disabled
  2. Mac builds the initial Dock with only the GP-specified apps
  3. After the user profile has been built and the initial Dock set up, user logs out.
  4. "Merge with user's Dock" can now be set to Enabled (or back to Not Configured).
  5. User can now log in and add their own icons without them being cleared on logout.

  • If a new user logs into the Mac while "Merge with user's Dock" is Enabled or Not Configured, then the Mac will build the full default Mac Dock for that user in addition to the GP-specified apps.
    • To initialise that user's Dock to GP-specified apps only again - Set "Merge with user's Dock" to Disabled again and have the user logout and log back in. 
  • Be aware that any other users logging in while "Merge with user's Dock" is Disabled will also have their Docks reset back to GP-specified apps only.

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