Create a Pilot Group to Validate a Change

Create a pilot group of users or devices who undergo a change which you want to monitor in the Validate Change dashboard, like migrating to Windows 10, or updating the type of hard disk to SSD. Select Filter > Pilot Group in the sidebar of the Validate Change dashboard to display only that group's performance.

For example, if you upgrade the virus checker for people with a given security clearance, you can create a pilot group for those users only, then filter for that group in the Validate Change dashboard, to monitor the impact of the change on those users. If it brings the expected level of improvement, you can continue to apply the upgrade to the rest of the company.

Define a pilot group of devices for migration, then upgrade one group at a time

Your pilot group should contain only very similar devices (hardware, configuration, OS, software), to ensure that any change in performance is due to that change only. Therefore you should avoid making more than one change at a time. If you simultaneously apply several changes across several groups, you cannot isolate the effect of each change.


Add a user or device only to one pilot group at a time, to ensure you only apply one change at a time to the same device.

You can create or add to a pilot group by doing the following:

Create a pilot group using the easiest method for your enterprise
  • Manually pick the list of device hostnames which belong to each pilot group, create a mapping file, then send it to Aternity SaaS Administration (see the step below).

  • Modify each device's Windows registry manually or with a mass-deployment script to specify the name of the pilot group for specific devices (see the step below).

  • Define the name of the group in your Microsoft Active Directory (AD) (see the step below).

A group name can contain spaces, but cannot contain special characters ($, &, #, @, ! and so on).


  1. Step 1 Open a browser and sign in to Aternity.
  2. Step 2 Send us a list of device hostnames and their pilot groups in a plain text CSV file.

    You must select the same device attribute as the basis for all your pilot groups.

    1. a Create two columns in your mapping file:

      The left column should contain the hostnames. The right column should list the pilot group of each hostname.

      Alternatively, create a group where all those in the same subnet would belong to the same pilot group. The left column would contain the list of subnets, and the right column would contain the names of the pilot groups.

      Map each device attribute its pilot group
    2. b Send the mapping file to the Aternity SaaS Administration.
  3. Step 3 Alternatively, create a pilot group by defining the name of the group for each device in its registry, either manually or using a mass-deployment script.
    1. a In the Windows Registry, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFTWARE/Wow6432Node/Aternity/A180
    2. b Create a string called AternityPilotGroup, and a value of the name of the group, like PilotGroup Upgrade to Win10.

      It takes up to an hour for this update to be visible in Aternity's dashboards.

      Add the string AternityPilotGroup in the registry
  4. Step 4 Alternatively, create a pilot group by defining the name of the group in your Microsoft Active Directory (AD).
    1. a In the Active Directory Users and Computers (ADUC), browse to Users.
    2. b Create a new ADUC field called AternityPilotGroupAD.
    3. c In the User Properties > Attribute Editor, assign a value to AternityPilotGroupAD.

      Whatever value you populate this field with will be the name of the Pilot Group. For example, if you have three users whose AternityPilotGroupAD=Group1, then they will all be part of Group1.

    4. d Save your changes.