How to force Intune Sync manually from a Windows device

You can manually force sync Intune Policies or configuration profiles or an application deployment from a target device after they have been assigned. Syncing forces your device to connect with Intune to get the latest updates, requirements, and communications from your organization. 

You could either wait for the next Intune policy refresh cycle but this will mean that you would have to wait for couple of hours before you know if the policy has been applied succesfully or an app has been installed on the device. This can delay your testing and app deployment.

According to Microsoft: “When you target a device or user with an action, then Intune immediately notifies the device to check in to receive these updates. For example, when a lock, passcode reset, app, or policy assignment action runs.” So, you may not even have to manually force initiate a sync from the Device but if you have to, then we will see how you can do that in the next sections of this blog post.

Let’s first check the default Intune Policy refresh cycle if there are no actions which have triggered a notification for device to check-in with Intune.

Intune default Policy refresh frequency

Devices check in with Intune when they receive a notification to check in, or during the scheduled check-in. Below is the default Intune Policy refresh frequency / scheduled check-in along with Device Type.

Device TypeRefresh Cycle
iOS/iPadOS~ 8 Hours
macOS~ 8 Hours
Android~ 8 Hours
Windows 10/11 PCs enrolled as devices~ 8 Hours
Windows 8.1~ 8 Hours
Source: Microsoft

Below is the default Intune Policy refresh frequency if the device is recently enrolled:

Device TypeRefresh Cycle / Frequency
iOS/iPadOSEvery 15 minutes for 1 hour, and then around every 8 hours
macOSEvery 15 minutes for 1 hour, and then around every 8 hours
AndroidEvery 3 minutes for 15 minutes, then every 15 minutes for 2 hours, and then around every 8 hours
Windows 10/11 PCs enrolled as devices
Every 3 minutes for 15 minutes, then every 15 minutes for 2 hours, and then around every 8 hours
Windows 8.1
Every 5 minutes for 15 minutes, then every 15 minutes for 2 hours, and then around every 8 hours
Source: Microsoft

Manually Initiate Intune Policy Refresh from Windows Device

To Force initiate Intune Policy Sync manually from Windows device, please follow below steps:

  • Go to Settings -> click on Accounts -> click on Access work or school.
  • Click on your Connected Organization. For example: Connected to <your Organization> Azure AD.
  • Click on Info Button.
Manually Initiate Intune Policy Refresh from Windows Device

Scroll down on the Managed by <your Organization> page to find Device sync status. Click on Sync button to force initiate Intune Policy refresh on your device. This usually takes around one or two minutes to complete the Sync.

Manually Initiate Intune Policy Refresh from Windows Device Device Sync Status

Monitoring Intune Policy Refresh Information in Event Viewer

You can also monitor the Evenviewer after this Sync finishes. If you have applied any Policies or Device Configuration profile or Pushed an application to this device, the status of each setting can be checked in the eventviewer.

  • Go to Start -> Search for Event Viewer and click on it to Launch Event Viewer MMC.
  • Expand Application and Services logs -> Microsoft -> Windows.
  • Find DeviceManagement-Enterprise-Diagnostics-Provider folder.
  • Click on Admin and go through the logs to find the specific policy or an application deployment status.
DeviceManagement-Enterprise-Diagnostics-Provider Intune

Conclusion

When we are creating Intune Policies and Deploying apps to devices in bulk, we generally perform testing on couple of devices first to make sure that the policy is applying successully or an app is deployed successfully.

Therefore, instead of waiting for Intune Policy Refresh cycle to kick in which generally is around 8 hours, you can force initiate a sync manully from a device. However, please note Intune when you target a device or user with an action, then Intune immediately notifies the device to check in to receive these updates.

For example, when a lock, passcode reset, app, or policy assignment action runs. This option is available for you to use when you are facing any issues in device sync or if the device has been offline for a long time but its not the condition though, you can force initiate a Device sync anytime you want.