Set device to supervised mode without data loss


Although Supervised Mode has many advantages, there are also disadvantages. First of all, it is important to understand that devices need to be reset to enable Supervised Mode. This means that all data on the devices will be lost. For newly purchased devices, this is not a problem as there is no user data on the devices yet. For devices that are already in use in an organization, the inevitable loss of data is a critical factor that must be addressed.

Prevent data loss

Additional steps can be taken to prevent data loss in advance when establishing Monitored Mode, regardless of whether the devices are already enrolled in Relution or not.


  • A primary device that is to be made supervised and enrolled in Relution.
  • A temporary device that is used to keep the backup.
  • The version of the operating system of both devices must be identical.
  • A Mac (macOS Catalina 10.15 or higher) with Apple Configurator 2.
  • Make sure that Search My iPhone is disabled on both devices.

Perform backup with a Mac computer

  1. create a backup of the primary device.
  • Connect the primary device to the Mac.

  • Open the Finder.

  • Under locations the device should be visible.

  • Both the Mac and the primary device should display a trust message. Click Trust on both devices.

  • After the devices trust each other, detailed information about the mobile device will be displayed on the Mac.

  • Enable the Create a backup of all your iPad data on this Mac feature on the General tab.

  • Click on Create backup now.


  1. Restore the backup to the temporary device.
  • Connect the temporary device to the Mac.

  • Open the Finder.

  • Click Trust on both the Mac and the temporary device.

  • Select the temporary device under Locations.

  • Under the General tab, click on Restore Backup.

  • From the list of backups, select the previously created one based on the timestamp.

  • Click on Restore.


    Wait until the backup is restored. After that you can disconnect the Mac and the mobile device.

  1. Now backup the temporary device the same way. Again, make a note of the time.

  2. If you use the Apple Configurator to put the primary device into monitored mode

  • connect the primary device to the Mac.

  • Open the Finder and backup the temporary device to the primary device (as described in step 2).

  • If you enroll the device with Apple Configurator:

    • Create and save a new profile in which you store the WiFi information of your network.

      Apple Configurator

    • Create a new profile and add there the profile you created before.

      Apple Configurator

    • Prepare the Draft as if you would add a device to the DE.

      • To do this, right click on the Draft and select Prepare.

      Apple Configurator

    • Assign the primary device to the draft.

      Apple Configurator

    • Re-establish the connection between primary device and Mac if necessary, in case it was interrupted.

    • Once the draft is applied, the monitoring profile will be associated with the device.

    • If the device asks you to accept or confirm configurations, do so.

    • The device should now be enrolled and monitored in Relution. In addition, the backup data should be present on the device.

  1. if you enroll the device via Apple DEP:
  • In Apple School / Business Manager, assign the device to the appropriate MDM server.
  • In Relution, perform a sync under Auto Enrollment and ensure that a DEP profile has been associated.
  • Connect the primary device to the Mac.
  • Open the Finder.
  • Click on Restore Backup and select the last created backup of the temporary device here.
  • The data will be restored and the device will be re-enrolled in Relution.

Backup iOS via iCloud

  1. Create a backup of the primary device.
  • Connect the primary device to a WiFi.
  • On the primary device, navigate to Settings > {username} > iCloud > iCloud Backup.
  • Select Create backup.
  1. Use a temporary device to restore the backup.
  • There, navigate to Settings > General > Transfer/Restore iPad.
  • Select Erase all content & settings.
  • Put the device back into operation.
  • Select Restore from iCloud backup, when the Apps & Data screen appears.
  1. Once the restore is complete, back up the temporary device in the same way.

  2. Now reset the primary device.

  • There, navigate to Settings > General > Transfer/Reset iPad. There, select Erase all content & settings
  1. Add the primary device to the DEP using Apple Configurator as described in the chapter Supervised Mode for Apple Devices. Be sure to enable the following steps:
  • Apps & Data
  • Apple ID
  • Restore finished.
  1. Start up the primary device. Under Apps & Data, select Restore from iCloud Backup. Enter the Apple ID you used to create the backup on the old device.

Restore inventory data from an enrolled DEP device to a new device.

You may already be using Relution to provision iOS devices with DEP. However, if you just purchased a new iOS device and want to restore the data from a previously enrolled device and enroll the new device, follow these steps:

  1. Back up the enrolled device’s data to iCloud.
  • Navigate to Preferences > {username} > iCloud > iCloud Backup.
  • Select Create Backup.

In Apple School / Business Manager, assign the new device to the Relution MDM server.

  1. Make sure you have created a DEP profile in Relution where the setup steps Import Backup and Log in with Apple ID are unchecked, i.e. not skipped.

  2. Under Auto enrollment, synchronize the DEP devices from Apple School / Business Manager.

  3. Make sure you assign the DEP profile to the new device.

  4. Switch to the new device and follow the setup steps. Select the Restore backup from iCloud option once the Apps and Data section appears. Enter the Apple ID you used to back up the old device to iCloud.

After the initial setup, the data should have been restored and the device enrolled in Relution.