Using AppMgr and FileMgr with SSM

StageNow 5.12


This guide covers the use of App Manager to install apps through Secure Storage Manager, Zebra's mechanism for securely sharing files and/or data on devices in compliance with new and forthcoming Android security changes. The Google-mandated security restrictions are being phased in starting with devices running Android 11. SSM is compatible with MX 11.3 (and later), and its processes for use with App Manager and File Manger were designed to be transparent to the administrator in many scenarios.

In this process, direct file access is no longer permitted, and only trusted apps such as Zebra StageNow and OEMConfig can use SSM to deploy files to devices for installation and/or for sharing data with other apps. Once a file is deployed in this way, the file can be accessed ONLY by its intended target through the SSM-provided URI. SSM is preinstalled on all Zebra devices running Android 11 and later, and is intended to replace the /enterprise partition as a means of sharing and persisting device data.

The use of the /enterprise partition is deprecated, and will eventually be prohibited. Zebra recommends switching as soon as possible to the SSM-based approach, which uses Zebra's Secure Storage Manager to securely store, share and persist apps, config files and data on a device. Any app intended to receive data shared through SSM must be capable of using a URI for data consumption.

† Google-mandated changes are not exclusively for Zebra devices; they are part of the enhanced Android security specifications that will eventually be required of any Android app intended to share data.


  • Zebra device running Android 11 or later
  • MX 11.3 (or later) on device (MX 11.9 recommended)
  • StageNow 5.6 (or later) on Windows PC
  • Target app capable of URI-based data consumption

For more information about the File Manager parameters involved in this operation, see File Manager docs.

Install Apps Using SSM

The steps below provide a quick summary for administrators familiar with StageNow usage. For detailed instructions, please refer to docs for creating a Profile.

To Install an App With SSM

  1. In a new or existing StageNow Profile made for MX 11.3 (or later, MX 11.9 recommended), add File Manager and App Manager.
  2. Under File Manager File Action, select "Deploy file for an application" and click Continue.
  3. In the "Target Application File Definition" field, enter: com.zebra.devicemanager/persist_apk/your_apk_name.apk.
    This defines the target app name (Device Manager), optional target-app folder (/persist_apk) and file name (your_apk_name.apk).
  4. Under Persist the File:
         a. Select "Persist" to keep the .apk file on the device after an Enterprise Reset.
         b. Select "Do not persist" to allow deletion of the .apk file from the device after an Enterprise Reset.
  5. Under Source Access Method select the location of the source .apk file:
         a. Select "File on Remote Server" option to download the source file from a server.
         This invokes the Source URI2 field for entering the server location. Zebra recommends this option as the most secure.
         b. Select "File in the Device File System" to access a file on the device.
         For this option, enter the Source Path And File Name of the file being copied to the device. Example: /sdcard/your_apk_name.apk.
         When ready to proceed, the screen should appear similar to the image below.
         Confirm settings and click "Continue" button. image Click image to enlarge; ESC to exit.
  6. Under App Manager Application Action select Install from drop-down list.
  7. For the "File name and path," enter the value as below based on the Persistence option selected in Step 4:
         a. For "Persist" option: com.zebra.devicemanager/persist_apk/your_apk_name.apk
         b. For "Do not persist" option: com.zebra.devicemanager/non_persist_apk/your_apk_name.apk
    image Click image to enlarge; ESC to exit.
  8. Finish and save the Profile and create barcode(s).

The app is securely installed on any compatible device that scans the barcode(s).

Also See