What is Desktop Analytics?

Desktop Analytics is a cloud-based service that integrates with Configuration Manager. The service provides insights and intelligence for you to make more informed decisions about the update readiness of your Windows clients. It combines data from your organization with data aggregated from millions of devices connected to Microsoft cloud services.

Use Desktop Analytics with Configuration Manager to:

  • Create an inventory of apps running in your organization
  • Assess app compatibility with the latest Windows 10 feature updates
  • Identify compatibility issues, and receive mitigation suggestions based on cloud-enabled data insights
  • Create pilot groups that represent the entire application and driver estate across a minimal set of devices
  • Deploy Windows 10 to pilot and production-managed devices

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Note: Desktop Analytics is a successor of Windows Analytics. The Windows Analytics service includes Upgrade Readiness, Update Compliance, and Device Health. All of these capabilities are combined in the Desktop Analytics service. Desktop Analytics also is more tightly integrated with the Configuration Manager.


Many customers have challenges with getting and staying current with Windows 10. The primary challenge is testing applications. This process is typically manual. It’s time-consuming for IT administrators and application owners to continually analyze existing applications. Then remediate any issues that arise.

Desktop Analytics provides the following benefits:

  • Device and software inventory: Inventory of key factors such as apps and versions of Windows.
  • Pilot identification: Identification of the smallest set of devices that provide the widest coverage of factors. It focuses on the factors that are most important to a pilot of Windows upgrades and updates. Making sure the pilot is more successful allows you to proceed more quickly and confidently to broad deployments in production.
  • Issue identification: Using aggregated market data along with data from your environment, the service predicts potential issues to getting and staying current with Windows. It then suggests potential mitigations.
  • Configuration Manager integration: The service cloud-enables your existing on-premises infrastructure. Use this data and analysis to deploy and manage Windows on your devices.


To use Desktop Analytics, make sure your environment meets the following prerequisites.


  • An active Azure subscription, with Global Admin permissions
  • Configuration Manager, version 1902 with update rollup (4500571) or later. For more information, see Update Configuration Manager.
    • Full Administrator role in Configuration Manager
  • Devices running Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10
    • Install the latest updates. For more information, see Update Devices
    • Devices also need to have the Configuration Manager client, version 1902 with an update rollup (4500571) or later.

Note: Desktop Analytics doesn’t support upgrades to Windows 10 long-term servicing channel (LTSC). Desktop Analytics is designed to best support the in-place upgrade scenario. If you need to make major changes, such as from 32-bit to 64-bit architecture, use an imaging scenario. Desktop Analytics insights are still valuable in these classic OS deployment scenarios, but you can ignore the in-place upgrade specific guidance. For more information, see Scenarios to deploy enterprise operating systems with Configuration Manager


Desktop Analytics requires one of the following license subscriptions:

  • Windows 10 Enterprise E3 or E5; or Microsoft 365 F1, E3, or E5
  • Windows 10 Education A3 or A5; or Microsoft 365 A3 or A5
  • Windows VDA ES or E5

Next Steps

The following tutorial provides a step-by-step guide to getting started with Desktop Analytics and Configuration Manager:


Resource Credit | Microsoft 365

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