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Posts Tagged ‘StoreFront’

See how Citrix XenDesktop for Linux looks – #Citrix, #XenDesktop, #Linux, #EnvokeIT, #BYOD, #DaaS

June 4, 2015 1 comment

This is one of the coolest things a part from the Workspace Cloud service that Citrix is working on. I’ve had the pleassure of trying this out and we at EnvokeIT have been doing a lot of tests of this Linux VDA tech preview.

Isn’t it great that both Microsoft and Citrix now seem to love Linux 🙂   (and yes, I manipulated these images so it’s not an official Citrix statement!)Richard_happy_when_Microsoft_and_Citrix_Loves_Linux

So this little blog post is just going to show of the capabilities and how nicely this integrates with the Citrix XenDesktop architecture. First of all I’d like to say thanks to my colleagues Björn Bekkouche and Peter Smali for letting me use their lab environment!

Before we get into showing how it works and looks I must just highlight that if you have any questions about how we can assist you to deliver Linux-based Terminal Servers or VDI’s to remote users in a secure and optimal just contact us at EnvokeIT here or pop me an email: richard at envokeit.com.

This is great for all of you with Developers on Linux! Have them code from anywhere in a secure manner! They can run their Linux VDA in your datacenter, connect to it from an Receiver compliant device and code from them and you have your intellectual property secured internally instead of having them checking out Git repositories to their local devices etc.!

So what is XenDesktop for Linux? Well, to answer that really simple I assume that you have some basic knowledge of the Citrix XenDesktop architecture.. if you don’t then please read up on that a little before continue reading, one really good contribution to bulding your architecture is described in this Citrix Virtual Desktop Handbook or this Citrix XenDesktop – Blueprint. These contains a lot of valuable information that you shall think of and how to configure the environment to fulfill you use cases.

But overall think of the XenDesktop architecture of something like the following pictures (click to enlarge them). The first one shows the new model where we could run and take care of the VDA’s ourselves on-premise but leverage the Workspace Cloud service from Citrix so that we don’t anymore have to bother about the XenDesktop infrastructure components and the life-cycle management etc. of those. The second one is the more overall traditional architecture overview that you’d see of the different layers.

Apps-Service-Overview

XenDesktop_overview_architecture

And as you see above this details the standard architecture wher you would have your Server or Desktop VDA’s in the resource layer hosting the desktops for your users to connect to, but they have all been Windows-based up until now!

Now with the Tech Preview we can actually install the Linux-based VDA on a Red Hat or Suse machine and access that through the SAME Delivery Controllers and StoreFront stores that also manage our Windows-based VDA’s.

And this is awesome! 🙂 We can leverage the already existing Windows-based architecture to just “hook in” our Linux-desktops as well and get users to conect through Receiver for Web, Receiver and even through the NetScalers if you need (works like a charm!!).

So as you can see here we have a nice little landing page for our entry points that are running different versions and access different environments etc.

EnvokeIT_Access_Portal

So we have Peters entry point running one NetScaler version and theme: Read more…

Synergy 2015 – A condensed recap of everything you need to know – via @gkuruvilla, #Citrix, #CitrixSynergy

This is a great summary recap that George Kuruvill has done of Citrix Synergy 2015! Great work and enjoy this blog post!

For those of you who were not able to attend Citrix Synergy this year & dont have the time to sit through the key note recordings, I decided to put together a condensed version of some of the key announcements. So here goes!

Citrix Workspace Cloud

  • Citrix hosted control plane that enables customers to deliver a comprehensive mobile workspace to end users.
  • Gives customers the flexibility to host workloads on premises, in public or private clouds.
  • Control plane also provides end to end monitoring of user connections.
  • Evergreen infrastructure since Citrix maintains all core infrastructure components.
  • Workspace Cloud Connector installed on premises on a Win 2k12 server that establishes SSL communication between control plane and customer environment. Used to talk to infrastructure components like Active Directory and hypervisors hosting workload

I wrote a blog on CWC and the value proposition a month back that you can find here.

SYN 217 –  Workspace Cloud – Technical Overview [Video]

 

Citrix Lifecycle Management

  • Comprehensive cloud based service that can be used to design, deploy and manage both Citrix and other enterprise applications.
  • Based on the ScaleXtreme technology.
  • Lifecycle Management enables customers/partners to deploy infrastructure not only on premises but also public/private clouds (resource locations)
  • Customers/Partners have the ability to create blueprints to automate infrastructure deployments end to end. Examples of blueprints include a XD deployment for instance where you could not only install all the XD infrastructure but also automate the installation of all supporting infrastructure like Active Directory, SQL etc.
  • Vendors have the ability to create blueprints as well that can then be consumed by customers and partners alike.
  • Customers/Partners also have the ability to incorporate scripts (new/existing) into the deployment.
  • Once a blueprint is developed, its added to a library. Any resource within the library can then be deployed to a resource location (on premises, public/private cloud)
  • Another key benefit of the Lifecycle Management technology is the ability to automate application upgrades.

XenApp/XenDesktop

  • Xenapp 6.5 maintenance extended till end of 2017, EOL extended till 06/2018. Details here
  • New Feature Pack for XA 6.5 (enhance storage performance, Lync support enhancements, UPM enhancements, Director “Help Desk” troubleshooting”, Storefront 3.0, Receiver.next)
  • XenApp/XenDesktop 7.6 FP2  (End of Q2)
    • New Receiver X1
    • Lync 2013 on Mac
    • Touch ID Support
    • HDX with Framehawk
    • Native Receiver for Linux
    • Linux Apps and Desktops (Redhat and SUSE support)
    • Desktop Player for Mac 2.0 (June)
    • Desktop Player for Windows (Tech Preview)

SYN 233 – Whats new in XenApp and XenDesktop [Video]

SYN 319 – Tech Update for XenApp and XenDesktop  [Video]

Read more…

#Citrix #StoreFront 2.5.2 is released – #DaaS, #XenDesktop, #XenApp

Citrix has released Citrix StoreFront 2.5.2 with some good fixes…

Issues fixed in StoreFront 2.5.x

Updated: 2014-06-18

Issues fixed in StoreFront 2.5.2

Fail to launch a XenApp session from the second delivery site.

The StoreFront server had problems with load balancing between two XenApp farms. When the first farm was completely loaded, StoreFront did not use the second farm and the application launch failed. [#432279]

Enhanced enumeration fails with socket pooling enabled.

Enumeration failed for two or more farms when socket pooling was enabled in the store configuration file. [#470666 and #458139]

Issues with finding the domain controller for a domain.

Slow logon times occurred when geographically distant domain controllers were chosen. [#479210]

Submitting the logon form after the authentication service session timed out results in an HTTP 400 Bad Request.

When the logon form was submitted after the authentication service session timed out, an HTTP 400 Bad Request response was generated preventing the user’s credentials from being resubmitted. [#479200]

Directory queries are not thread-safe.

Citrix default Domain Services crashed because the Directory services account look-up was not thread-safe. [#479188]

Issues fixed from StoreFront 2.1 to 2.5

Changing an expired password on next logon fails.

When prompted to change a password, client domain users using Windows would not be able to successfully change their passwords because of Windows Server 2003 domain controllers failing to handle the operation correctly. Microsoft has issued an update that resolves this problem. The update is available via Windows Update or may be downloaded from Microsoft support directly at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2927811. [#438725]

A user with a large number of subscriptions loses the ability to manage subscriptions.

When logging on, users with 353 or more automatic app subscriptions would receive the following error: “Citrix Receiver cannot currently add, remove, or reposition apps.” [#432086]

The wrong user name is sometimes shown.

Clients would erroneously display a different username. [#430823]

PNA resource IDs do not match requirements of local launch logic.

PNA resources from XenApp were in a format different than StoreFront’s usage. This inconsistency led to slower performance due to excessive ICA connections.[#429055]

Partial wildcard certificates cause issues in the admin console.

The admin console would improperly display configured host names from the IIS bound certificates. [#424708]

Change password option is not available for some users.

Some users were not given the option to reset their password even though they were enabled to do so. [#416373]

Subscription export/import loses subscription properties.

StoreFront was not properly maintaining multiple subscription properties. [#408668]

DAC smart card authentication updated to use domain account services rather than IIS certificate mapping.

Desktop Appliance Connector certificate authentication with smart cards required manual configuration with IIS certificate mappings rather than using the default domain account services. [#406945]

A SAN web server certificate with no CN causes issues for the admin console.

StoreFront admin console was improperly handling common name entries in certificates which would cause console crashes.[#401815]

StoreFront home farms support gives a user access to all farms when they should have access to none.

When a user was configured without access to any farms, all farms were enumerated for that user.[#400869]

The admin console being closed would overwrite some manually applied changes made to the configuration file.

Some manual configuration changes were being lost when the admin console was closed. [#440946, #424460, #439887, #395155]

Read more…

#Citrix #XenApp and #XenDesktop 7.5 is released

March 26, 2014 1 comment

Finally it’s released, just go and download and enjoy (hopefully)! 😉

https://www.citrix.com/downloads/xendesktop/product-software/xendesktop-75-platinum.html

Documentation is available online in Citrix eDocs. Keeping in mind that the online documentation will be periodically updated, you may also download a PDF file with a current snapshot for offline use:

Admin Guide
Upgrade Guide
Install Guide

This single package contains the Core and components needed to deploy the server-side infrastructure supporting Windows 8.1 and Server 2012 R2 and includes Director, Studio, Delivery Controller, Virtual Delivery Agent, Personal vDisk, Universal Print Server, Receiver and StoreFront, Profile Management, HDX, Migration tool, License Server and CloudBridge (Branch Repeater) plug in.

//Richard

Bug in Citrix Receiver 13 for Linux – cannot connect with multiple STAs – @CitrixSupport, @CitrixReceiver, #Citrix

Ok, we’ve had some issues with Citrix Receiver version 13 for Linux.. and it’s not just ONE issue. I found one that I thought I just have to share… so it’s lab Saturday for me at the office in a true geek manner with two XenClients and my favourite MacBook!

Bugg_finding_geek_Saturday

I guess that some of you have tried the Linux Receiver and knows how hard it is to get working, especially on a 64-bit distribution of Linux like Ubuntu 12.04 LTS och 13.10 LTS.

If you follow these instructions you can get it onto the device and then login through a browser (local Receiver UI may still not be full functioning!)..

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/CitrixICAClientHowTo

What I’m about to show you is that it’s not just only getting Receiver on the device and ensuring that the SSL certificates are trusted. You then have to be able to use it as well externally through a NetScaler Gateway (NSG) into StoreFront and your XenApp/XenDesktop VDA’s.

Just assume that you have a production environment that consists of a NetScaler Gateway and a StoreFront server, if you then in StoreFront have configured your NetScaler Gateway correctly and the appropriate STA configuration (with MULTIPLE STA’s) then you will notice that you can’t launch a session.

BTW, the recommendation from Citrix is to use multiple STA’s, right! See this from edocs:

For all deployments, if you are making resources provided by XenDesktop, XenApp, or VDI-in-a-Box available in the store, list on the Secure Ticket Authority (STA) page URLs for servers running the STA. Add URLs for multiple STAs to enable fault tolerance, listing the servers in order of priority to set the failover sequence. If you configured a grid-wide virtual IP address for your VDI-in-a-Box deployment, you need only specify this address to enable fault tolerance.

Important: VDI-in-a-Box STA URLs must be entered in the form https://serveraddress/dt/sta in the Add Secure Ticket Authority URL dialog box, where serveraddress is the FQDN or IP address of the VDI-in-a-Box server, or the grid-wide virtual IP address.

The STA is hosted on XenDesktop, XenApp, and VDI-in-a-Box servers and issues session tickets in response to connection requests. These session tickets form the basis of authentication and authorization for access to XenDesktop, XenApp, and VDI-in-a-Box resources.

If you want XenDesktop, XenApp, and VDI-in-a-Box to keep disconnected sessions open while Citrix Receiver attempts to reconnect automatically, select theEnable session reliability check box. If you configured multiple STAs and want to ensure that session reliability is always available, select the Request tickets from two STAs, where available check box. Read more…

#XenDesktop 7.1 on #Hyper-V Pilot Guide! – #Citrix

February 19, 2014 1 comment

This is a great PoC guide, some thing I would have done differently in detail but overall great work!

You’ve heard of XenDesktop 7.1, experienced a demo and worked through the Reviewer’s Guide. Now where do you turn when you’re ready for a PoC, pilot and preparations for a full-scale rollout?

Here on the Citrix Readiness and Enablement Team, we’re always looking for ways to empower our customers to be successful on their projects. To this end, we’ve taken one of our most popular hands-on lab guides used to train hundreds of internal and external students and reworked it for consumption by the masses. The XenDesktop 7.1 on Hyper-V Pilot Guide can be download fromhttps://citrix.sharefile.com/d/scaa256260df4ab3b. In this guide we cover the following topics with step-by-step instructions and screenshots:

– Configuring System Center Virtual Machine Manager and Installing the Agent
– Setting Up SQL Server Mirroring for a XenDesktop site
– Setting up the XenDesktop Site
– Joining a Controller to an Existing Site
– Configuring StoreFront and Installing Certificates
– Configuring NetScaler for StoreFront Load Balancing
– Installing the VDA Software on Desktop and Server VMs
– Creating Catalogs of Machine for Desktops and Servers
– Creating Delivery Groups for Desktops and Servers
– Delivering Installed and App-V Applications
– Provisioning Services Configuration and Optimizations
– Using the XenDesktop Setup Wizard
– Setting up Remote Access with NetScaler and StoreFront
– Internal and External Connectivity Scenarios
– Load Evaluator Policies
– Monitoring with Director
– Exploring Configuration Logging
– Exploring Delegated Administration
– Working with PowerShell

And much more!

Take a look through the document and let us know your thoughts…

IMPORTANT: This guide is designed to be used as a reference for building PoC and/or pilot environments. Production environments should always be…

Continue reading here!

//Richard

Performance Tuning Citrix Storefront 2.x – #Citrix, #StoreFront via @PeterSmali

February 3, 2014 1 comment

Another great blog post from my colleague Peter Smali!

Performance Tuning Citrix Storefront 2.x

First of all I would like to thank Sandbu who came up with an extra performance tuning trick that I have been testing for a while now.
In this post I’ll be demonstrating an updated version of Sandbu’s due some small changes since the introduction of Citrix Storefront 2.x

As we all are aware of, Citrix Storefront is fully dependent on IIS to work, but it is really suffering of some perfromance issues that surely most of us who have been testing or implementing it are aware of. So Let’s give Storefront a new perfromance birth by doing the following
Attention! Take a backup of all files you are going to modify before doing this! And Remember that Citrix Systems does not support this!!

1. Enable Socket Pooling (pooledSockets=”on”)

Open your C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Citrix\Storename\Webweb.config file as administrator and chenge pooledSockets=”off” to pooledSockets=”on”
By enabling socket pooling, Storefront maintaines a pool of sockets instead of creating a new socket each time a new user connects to Storefront, this will give a better performance for SSL based traffic.

2. Changing the application pool to always running (Windows Server 2008 R2)

If you are running Storefront on Windows Server 2012, there is already a new feature implemented in IIS called always running on the application pools but if you are still Windows Server 2008 R2 as I do then you need to do some manual changes…

But if you are still running Windows Server 2008, then you need to do the following:

2.1 Download and install Application Initialization Module for IIS 7.5. A reboot may be required to finish the installation process…

2.2 Open the C:\Windows\System32\inetsrv\config\applicationHost.config on the storefront server as administrator and locate the following setting <configuration><system.applicationHost><applicationPools> and add thealways running paramter startMode=”AlwaysRunning” on each of following application pools

•Citrix Delivery Services Authentication
•Citrix Delivery Services Resources
•Citrix Receiver for Web
•Citrix Delivery Services

The result may look like this:

add name=”Citrix Delivery Services Authentication” autoStart=”true” managedRuntimeVersion=”v2.0″ managedPipelineMode=”Integrated” startMode=”AlwaysRunning”>

2.3 Now locate <configuration>…

Continue reading here!

And you can also check this tuning blog post:

Finetuning a Citrix StoreFront deployment

And also ensure that you intelligently load balance your XML brokers, my suggestion is to use content switching in combination with load balancing to get a more optimal solution in place.

Ensure that you DON’T use FQDN’s when you add the XML broker name into the Delivery Controllers config of the StoreFront Store!! Use NetBIOS names, and NOT like farm1.company.com, rather specify “farm1″ and then ensure that the StoreFront server can resolve “farm1″ to your CS VIP, that will speed enumeration up a lot due to that StoreFront first checks via NetBIOS/WINS which isn’t that optimal!

Content Switching instead of Load balancing of XenApp XML brokers? – #XenApp #NetScaler #CS #LB

Happy StoreFront’ing!

//Richard

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