Remote PC

Last Modified: Oct 16, 2016 @ 4:38 pm


Remote PC Catalog

  1. In Citrix Studio, Create a machine catalog.
  2. In the Operating System page, select Remote PC Access, and click Next.
  3. In the Machine Accounts page, click Add OUs.
  4. Browse to an OU containing office PCs. Check the box next to Include subfolders, and click OK.
  5. Then click Next.
  6. Name the catalog Remote PC or similar, and then click Finish.
  7. After the Catalog is created, you can Edit the Catalog to add more OUs.

  8. Or explicitly add individual machines to the Catalog.

Remote PC Delivery Group

  1. Create a Delivery Group.
  2. In the Machines page, highlight the Remote PC catalog, and click Next.
  3. Add users that can access the Remote PCs, and then click Next.
  4. In the Desktop Assignment Rules page, adding an entry here will let users connect to unassigned machines. If you don’t add anything here, then users can only connect to machines to which they’ve been explicitly assigned. Click Next.
  5. In the Summary page, enter a name for the Delivery Group, and then click Finish.
  6. Click Yes when prompted that there are no desktops to deliver.

Multiple Users per PC

Citrix CTX137805 How to Switch Off Remote PC Access Multiple User Assignment in XenDesktop 7.x: By default, when using Remote PC Access in XenDesktop, anybody that logs into the console session of the physical PC is automatically assigned to the Catalog machine in Citrix Studio. This can result in multiple users assigned to the same machine. For IT desktop support staff that routinely log into multiple PCs to support them, the IT staff could see many more machines in StoreFront than they intend.

To stop this, on every Delivery Controller, configure the following registry value so only the first user to log on to the machine after it has registered with the Citrix Broker service gets assigned to the machine. You can still manually assign users to machines using Studio or Director.

  • HKLM\Software\Citrix\DesktopServer\
    • AllowMultipleRemotePCAssignments (DWORD) = 0

Wake On LAN

If you have SCCM configured for Wake On LAN, you can connect XenDesktop to SCCM to power manage the Remote PC machines.

  1. In Citrix Studio, go to Configuration, right-click Hosting, and click Add Connection and Resources.
  2. In the Connection page, change the selection to Create a new connection.
  3. Change the Connection type to Microsoft Configuration Manager Wake on LAN.
  4. Enter the SCCM server’s FQDN.
  5. Enter SCCM credentials. The SCCM credentials you specify must include collections in the scope and the Remote Tools Operator role.
  6. Give the Connection a name, and click Next.
  7. In the Summary page, click Finish.
  8. Edit the Remote PC Machine Catalog.
  9. In the Power Management page, change the selection to Yes, and click OK

Install VDA on PC

  1. On the PC, install .NET Framework 3.5.1 (Windows 7) or 4.5.2.
  2. Disable power saving options (e.g. Hibernate, Sleep, etc.)
  3. If Wake on LAN is desired, configure the PC’s BIOS and NIC to enable Wake on LAN.
    1. Make sure SCCM Agent is installed, and Hardware Inventory has run at least once.
  4. Download Standalone Virtual Delivery Agent 7.11. It’s in the Components that are on the product ISO but also packaged separately section. The Standalone installer is smaller than the full 7.11 ISO, and is more appropriate for distribution across WAN circuits.
  5. Install Virtual Desktop Agent 7.11 using the /remotepc switch. Since Remote PC is typically installed on many distributed PCs, use a software deployment tool to install the VDA package using CLI parameters. The /components switch lets you exclude Receiver. See Use the standalone VDA installer at Citrix Docs for more information.
    VDAWorkstationSetup_7.11.exe /quiet /remotepc /components VDA /controllers "xdc01.corp.local xdc04.corp.local" /enable_framehawk_port /enable_remote_assistance /enable_hdx_ports /enable_real_time_transport /noreboot
  6. After the machine is rebooted, if the machine is in one of the OUs assigned to the Remote PC Catalog, then the machine will be automatically added to the Catalog and the Delivery Group.
  7. When somebody logs into the console of the machine, that user will be automatically assigned to the machine. You can use the Change User link on the right to change or add users. Multiple users can be assigned to one machine.

  8. When the user logs into StoreFront, the user will see the actual machine name.
  9. The name displayed in StoreFront can be changed by running Set-BrokerPrivateDesktop MyMachine -PublishedName MyDisplayName.

Remote PC Maintenance

Assign/Un-assign users – There are four methods of assigning users to desktops:

  • Let Remote PC do it automatically. The first user that logs into the physical machine will be assigned to the desktop. If single user mode is not enabled then all other users that log into the machine will also be assigned to the desktop.
  • In Citrix Studio, find the machine, right-click it, and click Change User.
  • In Director, go to machine details and click Manage Users.
  • Use PowerShell:
asnp citrix.*
Remove-BrokerUser -Machine 'CORP\WIN1002' -Name 'CORP\user01'
Add-BrokerUser -Machine 'CORP\WIN1002' -Name 'CORP\user01'

Rename desktop icon – For Remote PC, the icon displayed to the user is the actual machine name. This sometimes is not very intuitive. The name displayed to the user can be changed by running a PowerShell command.

asnp citrix.*
Set-BrokerPrivateDesktop CORP\WIN10002 -PublishedName "Users Desktop"

Display last login time for the machines – Use the following PowerShell to display desktops sorted by when they were last used. Adjust the date filter as desired. You can manually remove the older machines or pipe the results to Remove-BrokerMachine.

asnp citrix.*

Get-BrokerDesktop -CatalogName "Remote PC" -filter {LastConnectionTime -le "2015-02-28"} 
-property AssociatedUserNames,MachineName,LastConnectionTime | Sort-Object LastConnectionTime

The above PowerShell command uses the -filter and -property switches. These switches process the filtering on the server-side, which improves performance.

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26 thoughts on “Remote PC”

  1. Hello Carl,
    I’m not able to find the path below on a workstation where I installed the VDA.
    VDA version 7.9 and the machine is windows 10.


  2. Remote PC is working great for us, but I have a couple of challenges for which I am unable to find solutions. First, Citrix policies assigned via GPO don’t seem to be taking effect on the targeted Remote PCs. I need to make sure we block HDX file access from the connecting machines. We don’t want file access in/our of the Citrix environment.

    Secondly, we typically get audit reports (via Manage Engine Audit Manager) regarding user logins to the shared desktop environment and I’d like the same thing when users access Remote PC. But I’m not necessarily interested in EVERY login event to their workstation – just the Remote PC connections. Do you know of any way to accomplish this? Any suggestion, 3rd party tool, etc. would be appriciated.

    1. 1494/2598 needs to be opened to every VDA.

      Controllers need port 80 opened to every VDA. I’ve seen antivirus interfere with this.

  3. Hi Carl,

    Excellent article! However, we’re trying to set up Remote PC and have managed to get the Machine to appear in SF, however, when a user clicks the Desktop to connect to it, it doesn’t move past the “Connection in Progress…” screen. The user has the right to log into the machine.

    What are we doing wrong?

  4. Carl,

    We just want users to access their own desktop PC this way. Is there a way to do this without creating a Machine Catalog for each machine/user connection?

    1. Of course. You create a Remote PC Catalog and a Remote PC Delivery Group. Any machine added to the Catalog is automatically added to the Delivery Group. All Remote PC users must be assigned to the Delivery Group > Users tab. Then you assign individual users to each machine in the Catalog. Remote PC can do this for you automatically based on who logs into the physical machine. Or you can use Director or Studio to change the users assigned to each individual machine.

      1. Hi Carl thanks for reply, I do the same procedure but still not visible the publish desktop in storefront

  5. I have create the machine catalog and Delivery Group for physical PC and its showing registered VDA but not visible in storefront.

    Please advise.

    1. If the machine is asleep or powered off then users can’t connect. Unless you maybe integrate with SCCM Power Management.

  6. Hello Carl

    Can you do Remote PC Access with a Windows Server OS (Windows Server 2012 R2) using the Server VDA?

    How come you didn’t use the 7.6.300 version of the VDA?

    Is it possible to have multiple simultaneous connections using Remote PC Access?



    1. Not sure about server OS. I’ve never tried it. You run Server OS on your physical PCs?

      Good catch on the VDA version. I’ll update the topic. I missed it when doing updates.

      For desktop OS, only one user at a time. That’s a Microsoft limitation. Otherwise you’d be using XenApp (RDSH).

  7. Hi Carl, I have my MC & Delivery group set up but my user is not getting the desktop icon from the reciever or storefront page. If I manually assign a user to the machine the desktop then becomes available. I do not want to manually assign users so I’m wondering what I am missing. I have logged in via RDP several times to the machines which I understand to be a supported option to auto-assign users. Is this the case or do I need to physically sign into the machine?

    1. The Catalog and Delivery Group are of type “Remote PC”? The machines are automatically added to both? The user is assigned to the Delivery Group (not the machine)? I’ve seen it work with RDP logon but there’s no harm in trying physical logon.

  8. When a Remote PC is used by an user, the next user gets a “useless” error message in saying something like “cannot connect to app. contact helpdesk” is n’t there a way to indicate to the requester who is already using the machine?

    1. I’m not aware of any way to do this. You might have to call Citrix Support and submit an enhancement request.

  9. How can I restrict certain users from ever having a pc assigned to them. Example – those users are not allowed to access their pc remotely but share a pc with someone who is?

    1. Don’t assign the user to the Delivery Group. Edit the Delivery Group properties and on the Users page remove Domain Users and instead add a group containing authorized users.

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