Convert managed to unmanaged app

New Contributor

Hey everyone,


We're currently in a situation where we have users mixing their corporate/managed and personal/unmanaged apps on our devices (please don't ask why, it's a long story). Unfortunately, this leads to some of them being unable to back up personal data into their iCloud, as the app is seen as a managed app, and iCloud backups aren't allowed for managed apps.

It seems to me the most straightforward solution would be to convert the apps from managed to unmanaged. But I can only find information going from unmanaged to managed. Does anyone know if it's possible to convert an app back to unmanaged once it's been managed and how to do that?






Moving an app from managed to unmanaged should be as simple as unscoping the app.

When you remove scoping you remove your license, but the app and data should remain on the device. When trying to use the app, the end user may be prompted to “buy” the app in the store, which gives the app their own license.

Test first before making any widespread changes, but this is how it use to work a while back.

Yeah, I've tried that on my device with an app. I've removed my device and account from the scope and explicitly removed the license from my user account. But the app is still seen as managed. I've even deleted the app from my device and reinstalled it from the App Store, but unfortunately, it's still seen as a managed app.

The behavior you’re describing after deleting the app and installing it from the App Store is problematic. Installing from the App Store should be done under the end user’s personal Apple ID. A personal Apple ID should only be able to install an app as unmanaged.

How are you verifying the app is still managed on the device? Looking at the device record in Jamf Pro? If so, delete the app and send an Update Inventory command next. Verify the app no longer appears in the device’s inventory record.

And while I haven’t checked, this may be a display issue in Jamf Pro where it sees any app as managed so long as there’s a volume license associated with the app record — regardless of how it was installed.

I've tested it with my personal AppleID. But the app I've tested it with (Zoom, in this case) remains a managed app. I can verify that by checking if I can back it up to my personal iCloud (which I can't) and by going to Settings - General - VPN and Device Management - MDM Profile - Apps, where Zoom is still listed as a managed app. Unfortunately, once I delete the app, it also disappears from the list of managed apps in settings. But as soon as it's installed, it appears again.

But ideally, I'd want to convert the app without having to delete and re-install it so that the app data persists.