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#Citrix #XenMobile 8.5 MAM upgrade! Part 1 – #StoreFront, #AppController, #NetScaler

September 1, 2013 7 comments

In this little blog series series you’ll follow a little upgrade process to XenMobile 8.5 for Mobile Application Management (previously known as CloudGateway).

Ok, I don’t exactly know where to begin. I must first say that Citrix is THE master when it comes to renaming products, updating/changing the architecture, changing consoles (claiming to reducing the number of them like every year but at the same time introduce new ones).

How hard can it be to make crystal clear documentation and upgrade processes that works and are easy? I feel already that my tone in this blog post is “a bit” negative… but I think that Citrix actually deserves it this time.

I must now take a step back and calm down and point out that Citrix is delivering some MAJOR changes and good news/features in the new XenMobile 8.5 release though! It’s great (when you’ve got it up and running) and I must say that I don’t see anyone that is near them in delivering all these capabilities in a nice end-to-end  delivery!! 🙂

Have a look at everything that is new, deployment scenarios etc. here before you even start thinking to upgrade or change your current NetScaler, StoreFront and AppController environment!

Once you’ve started to read the different design scenarios you’ll see that App Controller can be placed in front of StoreFront, in the back of StoreFront or totally without StoreFront… all the options just make your head spin! Because Citrix doesn’t really make it clear on how all of this should work with a Receiver and Worx Home depending if the device is on the internal network, external through NetScaler or what the capabilities that you need are supported in the different scenarios in a simple way, just text that explains it. And I find the pictures and text a bit misleading:

You can include StoreFront in your deployment, which allows users access to published applications from XenApp and virtual desktops from XenDesktop, along with apps configured in App Controller. When users log on with Citrix Receiver, all of their apps appear in the store. The following figure shows how you can deploy NetScaler Gateway, App Controller, and StoreFront in your network.

Deploying App Controller with StoreFront and NetScaler Gateway

As you see above the App Controller is added as a “Farm” just as in 2.6, but is that the truth now in version 2.8 of App Controller?

If you have a look at the text from this page it’s getting even more confusing: Read more…

Choose your #Citrix #NetScaler … wisely… – via @hlouwers

This is a question I get a lot and I must say that Henny Louwers did answer it well in this blog post!

I spend a lot of my time breaking down the different models of Citrix NetScaler appliances and different Software Editions within the Citrix NetScaler portfolio.

I decided to set up a blog about this since the path is usually pretty much (lengthy but) the same. This does not mean the answer is always easy because there are a lot of questions that need to be answered.

The first thing I would like to get off my chest is the following: Stop seeing/selling the Citrix NetScaler as a replacement for Secure Gateway. It is so much more than that. I often have discussions with various engineers and consultants telling me that Citrix NetScaler is so expensive for a Remote Access solution because Secure Gateway always used to be free. No offense but a Citrix NetScaler solution belongs to the networking department, not the Citrix XenApp sys admin department. Or maybe limited.

That leads me to the first difficult thing of a Citrix NetScaler project. The adoption of the Citrix NetScaler appliances to the networking guys of an organization. They need to embrace the solution to make this a success. For some reason they too see it as a ‘’Citrix’’ solution. For that reason one of the most important meetings to setup is usually with the networking guys to try to explain the L3-L7 functionality of the Citrix NetScaler solution. When they realize it competes with F5, Juniper, Cisco, etc then we are on the right track.

NetScaler Gateway or NetScaler Standard Edition

Usually the first question of a customer is regarding something simple like replacing the Remote Access solution. Since the NetScaler is going to be the main platform for publishing Citrix publications a NetScaler Gateway can be considered as a valid option. This is when I tell a customer it would be wise to spend a little extra on the NetScaler Standard Edition since this would leverage the solution be having full load balancing capabilities (among others). When you compare prices between the NetScaler Gateway and NetScaler Standard Edition you will see that the Standard Edition will be somewhat more expensive but I for one think that it is worth the difference given the feature set that come with the Standard Edition. Of course the NetScaler Gateway can always be upgraded to a NetScaler Standard Edition (or higher) if you will.

Another feature of Citrix NetScaler Standard Edition is the ability to run Citrix Web Interface on the appliance. Honestly, I do think is not really that important anymore….

Continue reading here

//Richard

#XenDesktop 7 and #AppController setup – #Citrix, #MAM – via @msandbu

Good job on this blog post by Marius Sandbu!

XenDesktop 7 setup and AppController setup

So the big day is here, XenDesktop 7 is released from Citrix and with it ends the old XenApp architecture. 
Support for Server based session hosts is still there but the architecture is merged into XenDesktop.

Other features include:
App-V integration
License console integrated into Studio
Storefront administration also from the same console.
The list goes on and pictures say more than a thousand words.

(Can also say that Citrix also released a new version of the Receiver platform for both Mac and Windows today, which includes support for XenDesktop 7 and Storefront.

http://blogs.citrix.com/2013/06/25/receiver-for-windows-4-0-released-today/
http://blogs.citrix.com/2013/06/25/whats-new-with-receiver-for-mac-11-8/

XenDesktop 7 can be downloaded from Mycitrix.com à

http://www.citrix.com/downloads/xendesktop.html

Now the installation is pretty straight forward just choose Standard delivery controller install and it will include all of the needed components. After they are installed we need to create a deployment.
When you start Desktop Studio we choose create new deployment.

So we create a new site…

Continue reading here!

//Richard

#Citrix #XenDesktop 7 released – #RTW, #BYOD, #HSD, #VDI

Ok, it’s here! The official release is now available for everyone!

XenDesktop 7 Editions

There are tons of blog posts and materials already out there and some great features as well that comes with this new release from Citrix. If you haven’t already played with the Excalibur release and know about them I suggest that you start evaluating and testing now!

Here are some good links to have a look at:

Enjoy! 🙂

//Richard

Citrix Worx Apps announced! – part 2, #CitrixSynergy, #BYOD

Hi again,

Ok, yesterday I posted that Citrix announces the Worx apps which I think is a GREAT story and it looks as the killer apps!

Citrix Worx Apps announced! #CitrixSynergy, #BYOD

I got you excited I guess, but this is of course also not something that we’ll see released in May! The first release now in June will release the Worx Enroll and Worx Home apps, but Worx Home will only be the “store” for Mobile and Web apps. The XenDesktop/XenApp integration comes in the next release so until then the Receiver is still the client for that type of delivery.

I got to play around with Worx Home a bit yesterday and I really liked the way it displays the apps and how they easily can be sorted in a groups by type or folder structure. And then when you get XA/XD items in there and they are placed right next to all the other apps on your mobile device and you can launch Excel from you iPad directly instead of going through and opening the Worx Home or Receiver app the integration is really user friendly. But then again; don’t we still for the majority of the use cases think that XA/XD are “legacy” solutions? wouldn’t we rather strive to get into a complete SaaS model instead of adding these expensive hosted solutions? I know it won’t go away and there are great use cases for XA and XD but I would still say it’s legacy, park it and contain it and work on your strategy to change the model and become future ready! 😉

And for those that don’t go off and purchase the Mobile Solution Bundle in the future can continue to use the Receiver for their “legacy” XenApp/XenDesktop service delivery. The question is how this will be evolving though, I foresee a risk that to much of the focus in the future will be agains the Worx apps and that is something that may lead to longer release cycles of fixes and updates of the Receiver. That my of course not be an issue either though many companies today are struggling with that Citrix “goes to fast” and it’s hard to keep up (and Citrix has a hard time keeping up as well).

Stay tuned for a more complete update after Synergy!

//Richard

Citrix Worx Apps announced! #CitrixSynergy, #BYOD

“Worx Enroll” and “Worx Home” apps announced to support the MDM, MAM, Web, Saas and Win apps/desktop (XA/XD) from ONE STORE!!

This is something that we all have been waiting for!! Finally a one-stop-shop/app in where an end user can use their personal devices and consume MAM, MIM and WaaS (Windows as a Service) deliverables without enrolling to a full MDM service. And those devices that are corporate assets enables you to do the same delivery and add the MDM capabilities needed (e.g: geofencing, pass code and other policies and asset mgmt) with the same end user UI!!!

I want to see this in action and get my hands on it NOW! 😉

//Richard

#Citrix #XenMobile #MDM Integration With #Cisco ISE for #BYOD

Interesting and a good blog post by Sameer Mehta.

World of BYOD

 Bring your own device (BYOD) initiatives are enabling employees to bring their own personal devices to work and allowing them corporate access to services such as Email. We did a recent audit using our ability to integrate with security incident and event management (SIEM) systems for a customer. The audit provided visibility into their ActiveSync traffic and found devices that belonged to executives that were not under IT management. Here’s a snapshot of their BYO devices.

 

There are several reasons to enable such access – for example, to boost employee productivity or convenience of accessing email from any device. Having said that, as Uncle Ben puts it, “with great power comes great responsibility”, and this responsibility is on the IT administrator from a security point of view. It’s IT’s responsibility to make sure that corporate data is not compromised or leaked in the following scenarios:

  • What happens when this personal device is lost or stolen?
  • What happens if this device is jailbroken or rooted?
  • What happens if this device ends up outside an approved geofence. For example, outside of the US?
  • What happens if the user inadvertently installs an application that has the ability and access to the entire device memory, thereby having unauthorized access to corporate data?

End User’s perspective on Enterprise Mobility

End users want access to corporate services such as email, intranet, ability to share and collaborate over documents, and also use 3rd party applications such as Evernote, Quick Office or GoodReader. With mobile solutions such as XenMobile MDM, CloudGateway, ShareFile and GoToAssist, Citrix provides ubiquity i.e. ‘access any app. from any device’, and a unified view for applications with an enterprise app store, documents via ShareFile. Having said that, since the user is accessing multiple applications; end user experience is a key component of mobility solutions. For example, bootstrap authentication and provide single sign on (SSO) to other applications.

Enterprise IT perspective on BYOD

As IT is providing access to corporate services, the main concern is around data loss prevention (DLP) and protecting corporate content on the mobile device. This means, encrypting data at rest for application data, and documents that are hosted either on Sharepoint, Network File share or Cloud storage. From a DLP perspective, for security conscious organizations, the mobile solutions bundle, which includes XenMobile MDM and CloudGateway…

Continue reading here!

//Richard

Configuring Email-Based Account Discovery for #Citrix #Receiver

Check out this great blog post from Avinash Golusula:

Configuring Email-Based Account Discovery

1     Add DNS Service Location (SRV) record to enable email based discovery

During initial configuration, Citrix Receiver can contact Active Directory Domain Name System (DNS) servers to obtain details of the stores available for users. This means that users do not need to know the access details for their stores when they install and configure Citrix Receiver. Instead, users enter their email addresses and Citrix Receiver contacts the DNS server for the domain specified in the email address to obtain the required information.

To enable Citrix Receiver to locate available stores on the basis of users’ email addresses, configure Service Location (SRV) locator resource records for Access Gateway or StoreFront/AppController connections on your DNS server. If no SRV record is found, Citrix Receiver searches the specified domain for a machine named “discoverReceiver” to identify a StoreFront/AppController server.

You must install a valid server certificate on the Access Gateway appliance and StoreFront/AppController server to enable email-based account discovery. The full chain to the root certificate must also be valid. For the best user experience, install either a certificate with a Subject or Subject Alternative Name entry of discoverReceiver.domain, or a wildcard certificate for the domain containing your users’ email accounts.

To allow users to configure Citrix Receiver by using an email address, you need to add a SRV record to your DNS zone.

  • Log in to your DNS server
  • In DNS > Right-click your Forward Lookup Zone
  • Click on Other New Records
  • Scroll down to Service Location (SRV)
  • Configuring Email-Based Account Discovery
  • Choose Create Record

LIMITED RELEASE – #Receiver #Storefront 1.2 Update 1 for Web Receiver Add-in

Issue(s) Fixed in This Release

  1. After enabling the requireTokenConsistency parameter in StoreFront’s store configuration file (c:\inetpub\wwwroot\Citrix\<StoreName>\Web.config) as described in Knowledge Center article CTX134965, users might not be able to access resources when logging in through Access Gateway.
  2. Attempts to authenticate to the Receiver for Web fail for users whose passwords contain certain special characters.

Continue reading and download it here!

//Richard

XenMobile product overview… and It’s nice! via @BasvanKaam – #BYOD, #MDM, #Citrix

March 14, 2013 2 comments

Wow! I must say that Bas van Kaam has done a great wrap-up here! I highly recommend you to read this blog post!!! 🙂

It was only about a month ago when I was writing my Blog about the CloudGateway that I wondered which route  Citrix would take now that they acquired Zenprise, well… here it is… XenMobile, another Xen sibling sees the light! Lets jump right in…

I had the opportunity to make use of one of Citrix’s demo environments to have a closer look at MDM, which is an awesome way to explore new and existing products by the way, if your company is a Citrix partner and has access I definitely recommend having a look. Besides that I used the Citrix E-Docs website as well as Citrix.com to find as much information as possible.

The main focus of this article will be on XenMobile MDM as the Mobile Solutions Bundle (one of the two editions available) focuses primarily on the CloudGateway which I already discussed in one of my previous blogs.

MDM?

MDM stand for Mobile Device Management and it’s just that! Here’s what Citrix has to say about it: As per Citrix: XenMobile MDM is a robust mobile device management solution that delivers role-based management, configuration, and security for both corporate and employee-owned devices. Upon user device enrollment, IT can provision policies and apps to devices automatically, blacklist or whitelist apps, detect and protect against jailbroken or rooted devices, and selectively wipe a device that is lost, stolen, or out of compliance. Users can use any device they choose, while IT can ensure compliance of corporate assets and secure corporate content on the device.

Editions

There are two editions: XenMobile MDM and the Mobile Solutions Bundle. XenMobile MDM primarily focuses on (hardware) device management, more on it’s extensive feature set shortly. Every major platform is supported including: iPhone, iPad, Android, BlackBerry, Symbian and Microsoft Windows 8. It includes the XenMobile Secure Mobile Gateway (SMG) and XenMobile SharePoint Data Leak Prevention (DLP) as well as the XenMobile Mobile Service Provider (ZSM) and the XenMobile Remote Support Application Toolset.

Read more…

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