The Windows Intune administrative console provides you with access to a tremendous amount of information in a nice-and-simple presentation. With so much information, that’s not always easy to do. We use the notion of “surfability” to help you keep track. So, what exactly do we mean by surfability in this context. Well, we mean just that – context. Let’s take an example…

 

Let’s say you are browsing the System Overview page and notice a failed update. Not good – time for action! So, you click on the “1” link (1 update has failed) and now find yourself in the Updates workload looking at the update in question. What did we do there? We took the context of the link on the System Overview page (the update) and “surfed” you to the Updates workload, with the “All Updates” node selected, along with the “Failed” view filter to limit the list to just that update. The first  udate is selected by default. Just by clicking a “1”!

surfability

 

That’s pretty simple but surfability in Windows Intune goes further than that. Take a look at the preview pane at the bottom of the screen. This displays summary information about the update selected in the list of failed updates. You will see a link “4 computers failed to install this update”. Click that and you will surf to the property page for the selected update, with the Computers tab selected and the “Failed” view filter – and the four computers that failed to install the update displayed.

 

These are pretty simple examples. But how does this help you day-to-day? Windows Intune doesn’t force you to use any particular “path”. Generally, if you see a link (“2 failed updates” or “4 computers failed to install this update”) it’s clickable. You will see links such as this on Overview pages, property pages (for computers, updates and so on) and in preview panes when scanning a list. It generally doesn’t take too long to see how these contextual links help you move around the console to where you want to be, rather than where the console wants you to be!

 

We’re always looking for feedback so if you have any comments about this aspect of the administrative console just let us know.

 

Posted by Mark Williams, Senior Program Manager, Windows Intune User Experience