Group Policy | Deploy Edge Provisioned Favorites

Provisioning favorites within Microsoft Edge can be a really easy way to make the end user experience that little bit better. There are multiple group policies available to configure settings within Edge, very similar to Google Chrome.

Provisioning Edge favorites allows admins to generate a list of websites that can be pinned to users Edge favorites bar. These favorites can not be changed or deleted and if combined with other policies such as ‘Show the favorites bar’ it will show the managed favorites on all users Edge window.

Before any Edge group policies can be enabled, the policy templates will need to be downloaded from the Microsoft site below:

Link: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/edge/business/download

These templates will need to extracted and copied to the central store before they are available to be configured within the group policy editor.

Once the policies are ready to go, you’ll going to need to generate your list of URL’s you want deploying to your users. This can easily be done by building the URL list within Edge then exporting.

  1. First enable ‘Favorites configuration export for administrators’ by entering the following in your Edge URL field and changing Default to Enabled:
    edge://flags/#edge-favorites-admin-export

  2. Your need to restart Edge so go ahead and get it restarted
  3. After the restart head over to edge://favorites and start building your favorites list. Make sure that you build your favorites directly under the favorites bar 

  4. Once your finished select the three dots in the upper right hand corner and select ‘Export favorites configuration’ 
  5. Change the folder name if required and select ‘Copy to clipboard’ 
  6. Pasting the content into notepad, your see something similar to this:
    [{"toplevel_name":"Managed favorites"},{"name":"Google","url":"http://gooogle.com/"},{"name":"Bing","url":"http://bing.com/"},{"name":"Browsers","children":[{"name":"Firefox","url":"http://firefox.com/"}]}]

    This is the content that your require later for the group policy setting
  7. Now heading over to group policy and launching the editor on the required policy, expand User Configuration > Policies > Administrative Templates > Microsoft Edge
  8. Double clicking on the setting ‘Configure Favorites’, enable the setting and paste the content that was exported in step 6
  9. Apply the setting and link the policy to a Domain, site or OU and your good to go!

To compliment the above setting use the Enable favorites bar’ setting to ensure all users see the favorites bar toolbar and your new provisioned favorites. This setting is found is the same location within the group policy editor as the previous setting.

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