CrossOver Support

How to use CrossOver to deploy to managed Chromebooks


Overview


CrossOver can be used to leverage the Google Admin Console to help administer Windows applications on Chromebooks in an enterprise setting. Using CrossOver, an administrator can define and configure a set of Windows applications which will be made available to groups of users within an organization. When the administrator has done this configuration, end users will be able to access the specified Windows applications by clicking icons in the Chrome OS dock.

How it works


To use CrossOver with the Admin Console to deploy Windows applications in the enterprise, an administrator must first configure CrossOver and the Windows applications themselves. Typically, within CrossOver, each Windows application is installed into its own virtual windows environment. These environments are created automatically by CrossOver's software installer. The first step for the administrator is to decide which Windows applications a particular group of users will need access to. Then, the administrator should use CrossOver's standard software install process to install each piece of software. During this step, if any of the necessary software is not known to CrossOver's automated software installer, please contact Codeweavers directly for help.

Second, the administrator will use CrossOver to export data necessary for the Windows applications to be deployed to end users. This data will consist of a JSON-formatted configuration file, along with one or more archives which contain the virtual windows environments for each piece of software needed by the end users. The admin will then upload the configuration file to the Admin Console as CrossOver's configuration file. Finally, the admin will need to host the archive files on an https server which will be accessible to the end-user Chromebooks.

The admin can configure CrossOver to be either automatically installed for each user, or installed by hand at the end user's option. In either case, when the end user launches CrossOver, it will automatically obtain its configuration information as policy from the Admin Console. Based on this policy, CrossOver will know what archives to download to supply the given user with their Windows applications. If necessary, CrossOver will download these archives from the https server specified by the admin as the hosting location. Once the applications have been downloaded, the end users may use them offline without further access to this host. In the future, if updates are made available, CrossOver will again download fresh archives.

CrossOver itself is always distributed through the Google Play Store. Updates to CrossOver will be handled via the normal Play Store update process. Archives for the individual Windows applications are hosted and distributed on the internal https server specified by the administrator. Updates to these applications are not handled through Google Play, but instead are controlled by the administrator directly.

The instructions below will walk you through the process of using CrossOver to deploy Windows applications to managed Chromebooks.

Adding CrossOver to the managed devices for your organization


  • Go to admin.google.com and sign in with your login information.
  • Click on “Device Management”
  • Click on “Chrome Management” under Device Settings
  • One time only:
    • Go to Android Application Settings
    • Click the checkmark to “Enable Android applications to be managed through the Admin Console”
  • Click on “App Management”
  • Under Filters, change Type to “Android Apps”
  • Click on the yellow plus sign icon to add a new application from Google Play for Work

 

*Search for "CrossOver," click to its detail page, and approve it for your organization



*CrossOver now appears in the list of Android applications for your organization



  • Click on “CrossOver” to edit its settings
  • Click on “User Settings”

 

  • Click on your domain name / organizational unit under “Orgs”
  • Slide the sliders to your settings of choice, e.g., “Allow installation” and “Force installation” and click “SAVE”
  • If you have chosen "Force installation," CrossOver will now be installed automatically on all managed Chromebooks.

Using CrossOver as an Administrator to create configuration for end users


  • Download CrossOver from the Google Play Store.
  • Use CrossOver to install desired Windows software (eg. Microsoft Office 2010).
  • Click on the three dots in the upper right hand corner of CrossOver.
  • Click on “Chrome OS admin export”

 

  • You should see the following screen:



  • Check the box next to the applications that you want to export to all managed Chromebooks.
  • Type in the url of an https server where you will serve the .cxarchive file(s) CrossOver creates. These are archives of your virtual Windows environments. Their size will vary depending on which Windows applications you have installed. The archives will typically be fairly large files. The server must be accessible to all managed chromebook devices which will need access to the Windows applications.
  • Click “Export (#) Application” NOTE: This may take a couple of minutes. It will finish and a dialogue box indicating success will appear.



  • Transfer the .cxarchive file to the https server you specified during the export step above. The files will be saved in the Downloads folder.
  • Go to admin.google.com and sign in with your login information.
  • Click on “Device Management”
  • Click on “Chrome Management” under Device Settings
  • Click on “App Management”
  • Under Filters, change Type to “Android Apps”
  • Under Find or Update Apps, search for CrossOver
  • Click on “CrossOver”
  • Click on “User Settings”
  • Click on your domain name under “Orgs”
  • Click “Upload Configuration File”



  • Choose the .json file and click “OPEN”. It will be in a folder called “crossover_export….” and named “managed_cxoffice.json” (the same location from which you uploaded the .cxarchive file(s) in a previous step).



  • Click “SAVE” to save your configuration, and you are done!


Last modified on 2017-10-24 16:02:45 by Josh DuBois
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