Managed iOS, Single App, power & wifi config: your experiences...


I'm curious if anyone else has this experience...

On a managed iOS device, locked to 1 app, it has a wireless profile that is installed as part of the "imaging process" (via Apple Configurator). The app lock is delivered via a Casper MDM profile. I've found that if a device loses power fully (meaning the the battery is drained) and/or it hasn't connected to the network in some time (it's not clear which makes more difference), the device ends up in a limbo where it seemingly cannot reconnect to the network (even with a hard reset), it's still locked to an app that doesn't function because it has no network access, and the device cannot be 'unlocked' because Casper can't communicate with the device to remove the app lock restriction to all access to iOS to (presumably click like 2 things) to reconnect to Wi-Fi because it has no wireless access. The solution so far is to return them to the originator and have them refresh or reimage the device. After that it works again. This can be problematic in that some apps have UIDs for server side that change with reimage adding to the already complex number of steps to get a working device into someone’s hands.

TBH, I don't know if I'm doing this in the best way possible. Has anyone else experienced this, or have tips on how to avoid it?

Ultimately our use cases for all these iOS devices is to have them locked down. PIN is required. They're locked to a single app (the apps vary). If the devices get stolen, they need to be inaccessible.

Thanks for any help.


Honored Contributor III
Honored Contributor III

@yellow i've a couple of iPads that have suffered with similar.

They are running Sedna, which is licensed to the device.. So re-image is a PITA.

I've ordered a lightning camera adaptor & USB Ethernet from Apple. Going to test those to see if that will allow the device to have the MDM (not Casper), to take the device out of single app mode to fix the wireless.


@bentoms thanks for the info!

New Contributor II

As @bentoms mentioned it sounds like you would benefit from the USB ethernet trick. I use it often to reset passcodes on devices that get disabled or forgotten. iOS disables WiFi (don't ask me why) after a cold boot until the device is unlocked.

Contributor III

iOS locks access to Wi-Fi after the reboot if the device is protected with a passcode, because Wi-Fi payloads are part of the system that encrypts after the device is locked / restarted.


Well I was half-hoping that someone would tell me "you're doing it wrong, dipwad." But my ego expressed a sigh of relief in that it might be entirely beyond my control.

I will note, a refresh took care of one device that was wifi locked-out, which was pretty quick.