Citrix Health Check

Last Modified: Oct 19, 2019 @ 1:52 pm

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Health Check Overview

Health Checks review an environment for configurations that might cause future problems, not necessarily existing problems. Health Checks tend to focus on non-functional qualities like the following:

  • Availability
  • Security
  • Manageability
  • User Experience
  • Performance
  • Reliability

The rest of this article is an incomplete list of health check assertions for Citrix environments.

StoreFront Load Balancing

  • Citrix connectivity infrastructure design is documented: StoreFront, Gateways, ADCs, multiple datacenters, Delivery Controllers, SQL, etc.
    • Separate test Citrix environment has identical architecture as production: multiple data centers, high availability for all components, etc. – enables testing changes, including HA/DR changes, before performing those changes in production. Some upgrades are performed differently for HA/DR than for single components.
  • The FQDN that users use to access Citrix (e.g. https://citrix.company.com) resolves to a Load Balancing VIP, not a single server.
    • The FQDN automatically fails over (e.g. GSLB) to a VIP in a different data center if the primary data center is down.
  • The certificate for the SSL Load Balancing VIP is valid: trusted, not expired, matches FQDN, no errors in Chrome, etc.
    • Someone is responsible for ensuring the certificate is not expired and receives pending certificate expiration notifications.
  • The Load Balancing VIP sends SSL traffic to two or more StoreFront servers in the local data center – for redundancy.
    • The ADC-to-StoreFront server communication is SSL/TLS encrypted, not HTTP – this traffic contains user credentials.
  • The ADC monitor for the StoreFront servers is type STOREFRONT, or does a GET request to /Citrix/Store/discovery – other monitors might not detect stopped services.
  • X-Forwarded-For is configured in the Load Balancing Services (or Service Group) for Client IP header insertion.
  • Load balancing persistence is SOURCEIP with a timeout that is as long as the Receiver for Web timeout – COOKIEINSERT doesn’t work on all client devices.

StoreFront Servers

  • If the StoreFront servers are on the same hypervisor cluster, then anti-affinity is configured to keep them on separate hypervisor hosts.
  • StoreFront server VMs do no have any old snapshots – slows down performance, and consumes disk space.
  • StoreFront version is an LTSR Cumulative Update version (e.g. 3.12.4000), or the latest Current Release version (e.g. 1906) – No other versions are supported.
    • Upgrades are performed in a separate test environment that has identical architecture as production before the updates are performed in production.
  • StoreFront configuration is propagated to other servers in the StoreFront Server Group.
  • No recent unknown errors in Event Viewer at Applications and Services -> Citrix Delivery Services.
  • StoreFront Base URL is an https URL, not http. The FQDN resolves to the Load Balancing VIP, not a single server.
  • SSL certificates are installed on each StoreFront server and bound to IIS Default Web site. The SSL certificates are not expired.
  • C:\Users does not contain a bunch of user profiles. Delprof2.exe should be scheduled to delete these profiles – caused by users changing expired passwords.
  • If HTML5 Workspace app is enabled, then HTML5 Receiver is up to date – New versions are released at least monthly.
  • If Workspace app is stored on StoreFront servers, then the local Workspace apps in C:\Program Files\Citrix\Receiver StoreFront\Receiver Clients is current.
  • If Favorites are enabled, then Favorites (aka Subscriptions) are replicated to a StoreFront Server Group in a different data center.
  • If Federated Authentication Service (FAS), then multiple FAS servers configured through Group Policy.
    • FAS Servers are the same version as StoreFront.
    • If the FAS servers are on the same hypervisor cluster, then anti-affinity is configured to keep them on separate hypervisor hosts.
    • FAS Get-FasAuthorizationCertificate shows registration certificate is OK and not MaintenanceDue.
    • FAS group policy .admx template is up to date in SYSVOL.
    • FAS User Rules restricts usage to just some StoreFront servers, some VDAs, and some users – not all
    • Auto-enrollment is not enabled on the FAS certificate templates..
    • The Certificate Authority database is not excessively large.
  • Task Manager shows sufficient CPU and Memory for each StoreFront server.
  • A monitoring tool alerts administrators of any StoreFront performance metric issue, availability issue (e.g. service stopped), and Event Log errors.
  • Logon Simulator runs periodically to verify that StoreFront is functional.
  • StoreFront Disaster Recovery procedure is documented and tested.

StoreFront Configuration

  • Only one store. Or every store but one is hidden – if multiple stores are advertised, then Workspace app will prompt the user to select a store.
  • Each Delivery Controller farm is configured with two or more Delivery Controllers – for redundancy.
    • Or Delivery Controller XML can be load balanced. If load balanced, then ADC monitor is of type CITRIX-XD-DDC – so ADC can detect Local Host Cache outages.
    • Prefer separate farms per data center instead of stretched single farms (with zones) across multiple data centers.
  • Transport Type for Delivery Controllers is https, not http – this traffic includes user credentials.
  • Receiver for Web Session Timeout is not too short for user experience or too long for security.
  • Citrix Gateway configuration in StoreFront console:
    • The STAs in StoreFront match the STAs configured on the Citrix Gateway Virtual Server on the ADC appliances.
    • Session Reliability is enabled.
    • Callback URL is only needed for SmartAccess and Citrix FAS. Callback URL should be removed if it’s not needed.
    • Internal Beacon is only reachable internally.
    • External Beacon does not include citrix.com – ping.citrix.com is OK
  • HDX Optimal Routing can send ICA traffic through the Citrix Gateway that is closest to the VDA (i.e. farm).

Delivery Controllers

  • In CVAD 1906+, Citrix Scout Health Check does not show any errors or warnings. ūüí°
  • If the Delivery Controller servers are on the same hypervisor cluster, then ensure anti-affinity is configured to keep them on separate hypervisor hosts.
  • Delivery Controller VMs do not have any old snapshots.
  • Delivery Controller version is an LTSR Cumulative Update version (e.g. 7.15.4000), or the two latest Current Release versions (e.g. 1906). No other versions are supported – Citrix Product Matrix shows support dates.
    • Delivery Controller Upgrades are performed in a separate test environment before performed in production.
    • Citrix upgrades or updates are performed around twice per year.
  • Run Get-BrokerDBConnection to see the SQL connection string. No SQL Express. For AlwaysOn Availability Group (AAG):
    • SQL String points to AAG Listener, not single node.
    • All AAG SQL nodes in one data center. For multiple data centers, prefer separate farms in each data center with local SQL.
    • SQL String contains MultiSubnetFailover.
    • Each SQL server has SQL Logins for all Delivery Controllers – SQL Logins usually don’t replicate between SQL nodes.
    • Prefer Synchronous Commit with Automatic Failover over Asynchronous replication.
    • AAG Dashboard in SQL Studio does not show any issues.
  • SQL databases for Citrix are not excessively large. Database Backup tool is truncating the database logs.
  • SQL Servers have sufficient CPU/Memory to handle the Citrix SQL traffic. Monitoring tool alerts SQL DBAs of any performance or availability issues.
  • SQL Server version is supported by Citrix. https://support.citrix.com/article/CTX114501
  • Local Host Cache is enabled on the Delivery Controllers. Run Get-BrokerSite to confirm.
    • Delivery Controller virtual CPU allocation is 1 CPU socket with multiple cores – SQL Express Local DB for Local Host Cache only runs on a single socket (up to four cores).
    • How are non-persistent virtual desktops handled during SQL outage?
  • SQL Disaster Recovery plan is documented and tested.
  • SSL Certificates are installed on Delivery Controllers to encrypt XML traffic from StoreFront.
    • SSL certificates are bound to IIS Default Web Site, or netsh http sslcert to perform binding. IIS Binding does not include hostname.
    • SSL certificate not expired.
  • Trust XML Requests is enabled for pass-through authentication, SmartAccess, FAS, etc. Run Get-BrokerSite to confirm.
  • Task Manager shows sufficient CPU and Memory for each Delivery Controller server.
  • A monitoring tool alerts administrators of any Delivery Controller performance metric issue, availability issue (e.g. service stopped), and Event Log errors.

Citrix Studio

  • Citrix Studio consoles installed on administrator machines are the same version as the Delivery Controllers.
  • Customer Experience Improvement Program is disabled in Citrix Studio > Configuration node > Product Support tab.
  • Licensing Model/Edition matches what you actually own.
  • Citrix Studio Administrators are periodically audited to ensure only authorized users are granted Studio access.
    • Administrators are added as Active Directory Groups, not individual users.
  • Applications are published to Active Directory Groups, not individual users.
  • If App Groups, applications are published to only App Groups. Applications are not published to both App Groups and Delivery Groups.
  • Hypervisor connection uses a service account, not an admin account.
    • Hypervisor permissions for the service account are the minimum permissions required (custom role), not full hypervisor administrator.
  • Each Hosting Resource only has one datastore selected, not multiple datastores – Citrix MCS does not have a datastore “Rebalance” option. More datastores means more copies of master image snapshots, which means longer time to push out an updated Master image.
  • MCS Memory Caching Option is not enabled unless VDA 1903 or newer – older VDA, including 7.15 VDA, has poor performing MCSIO driver.
  • StoreFront URLs are not assigned to Delivery Groups using Studio – instead use Workspace app group policy to assign StoreFront URL.

Citrix License Server

  • Citrix License Server is version 11.16.3.0 build 28000 or newer to resolve a security vulnerability. ūüí°
  • The licenses installed on Citrix License Server match the purchased licenses at http://mycitrix.com – some Citrix License Servers have too many licenses installed.
  • If multiple Citrix License Servers, installed license count across all License Servers does not exceed the purchased licenses shown at http://mycitrix.com
  • Administrators are not frequently clearing named user license assignments to simulate concurrent licensing – license assignments should only be cleared when the user permanently no longer uses Citrix.
  • Subscription Advantage dates are not expired – if expired, download new license files and install them.
  • Usage and Statistics tab is configured as intended in the Citrix Licensing Manager gear icon.
  • Citrix License Server Disaster Recovery procedure is documented and tested.

Remote Desktop Services (RDS) Licensing

  • If RDSH VDAs, two or more activated RDS Licensing servers.
  • RDS Licensing Server operating system version matches (or newer) the RDSH VDA operating system version – e.g. Windows 2019 RDS Licensing for Windows 2019 RDSH servers. Windows 2019 RDS Licensing also works with Windows 2016 RDSH servers.
  • In RD Licensing Manager, right-click server -> Review Configuration shows green checkmarks.
  • The combined licenses installed on all RDS license servers do not exceed the purchased licenses.
  • On RDSH VDAs, HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal Services\LicenseServers shows two servers.
    • LicensingMode = 4, which is Per User mode, which is not enforced.

Citrix Director

  • Director version matches the Delivery Controller version.
  • If multiple Director servers:
    • Hypervisor Anti-affinity is configured.
    • Director Saved Filters are relocated to a UNC path instead of local C: drive.
  • Director server VMs do not have old snapshots – slows down servers, and increases disk space.
  • SSL certificate is installed on Director servers.
    • Admins and Support teams always use https to access Director. IIS or load balancer redirects from http to https.
  • Director website is SSL load balanced.
    • SSL protocol, not http, between load balancer and Director servers – this traffic contains user credentials.
  • Director logon page auto-populates the domain name – for user convenience. Might have to reconfigure the domain name after every Director upgrade.
  • Citrix Policy Settings for Director:
    • Enable Process monitoring is enabled.
    • Enable monitoring of application failures is enabled.
  • If Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) is Premium Edition:
    • Director Alerts are configured to email CVAD administrators.
    • Citrix ADM HDX Insight is integrated with Director. HTTPS protocol, not HTTP.
    • Probes are configured – Probe Agent version matches the Director version.
  • Help Desk knows how to use Citrix Director to support users.
  • Average logon durations are not excessive.
  • Repetitive issues (e.g. profile resets) are analyzed for root cause analysis and future prevention.

VDAs

  • Catalog design is documented – storage design, network design, multiple datacenters design, recovery design, etc.
  • VDA version matches the Delivery Controller version.
  • VDA Subnets are added to Active Directory Sites & Services.
  • DHCP is highly available. VDA IP Subnet router forwards DHCP requests to more than one DHCP server. DHCP scope is replicated to more than one DHCP server.
    • DHCP Scope has sufficient address availability for VDAs.
  • If KMS, slmgr.vbs /dlv shows a unique KMS CMID for each VDA machine – another option is Active Directory-based activation.
  • If persistent (dedicated) Catalogs:
    • The VDA version matches the Delivery Controller version – VDA updates should be automated (e.g. SCCM).
    • Dedicated Catalogs are created as Full Clones – Fast Clones cannot be moved to different storage or different hypervisor cluster.
    • Persistent desktops are backed up, replicated, etc. Recovery process is documented and tested.
    • Persistent desktop provisioning process is automated, preferably from a self-service portal.
  • No Personal vDisk – prefer SCCM-managed persistent desktops. Or App Layering User Layers if SCCM is not mature.
  • No double-hop – prefer master images with every application installed locally instead of double-hop to published application. Single hop have faster logins than double hop. Single hop is less complex than double hop since double hop requires Workspace app and icon management on the first-hop VDA machine. FSLogix can hide local applications.
  • Catalogs are upgraded to latest Catalog version available.
  • VDA registrations are somewhat evenly distributed across the Delivery Controllers.
  • ListOfDDCs registry value on VDAs has two or more Delivery Controllers.
  • Daily Health Check report shows registration status and maintenance mode status of every VDA machine.
  • RDSH Load Index Policy has not been modified from the default. CPU Metric is too volatile, and can cause a Denial of Service and uneven distribution of sessions. Current Load Index values should be almost the same on every RDSH VDA and not be anywhere near 10000.
  • In-guest monitoring agent shows VDA memory usage. Allocated VM Memory matches or exceeds memory Committed Bytes – Hypervisor monitoring can’t show actual VM memory usage.
  • RDSH VDAs are periodically restarted – net statistics workstation or net server statistics shows uptime.
    • In CVAD 1909+, MaxDelayMins is configured in Get-BrokerRebootScheduleV2. ūüí°
  • If Cloud-hosting of VDAs, PowerScale controls VDA power management.

VDAs – Hypervisor Hardware Clusters

  • Desktop VDAs are in their own hypervisor cluster that does not contain any Server virtual machines – avoids Windows Server licensing.
    • Hypervisor clusters with Windows Servers have proper Windows Server licensing.
  • Hypervisor admins don’t perform any hypervisor updates without first reviewing Citrix’s Supported Hypervisors article.
  • VDA vCenter is separate from non-VDA vCenter – allows non-VDA vCenter to be upgraded without affecting Citrix.
  • Hypervisor performance is monitored and alerted: CPU contention (aka CPU Ready Percentage), disk latency, CPU Usage, etc.
  • Capacity planning tool warns admins when more hypervisor hardware is needed.
  • If VMFS6 datastores, vSphere 6.7 Update 3 is installed – see release notes
  • NTP is configured and running on hypervisor hosts.
  • Hypervisor hosts have High performance BIOS settings.
  • NVIDIA vGPU software is current on hypervisor host and virtual machines.
    • The newest hypervisors can vMotion GPU-configured virtual machines.
    • NVIDIA in-guest vGPU Driver is installed before the VDA is installed – otherwise HDX 3D Pro will not work.

VDAs – Virtual Machine Hardware (vSphere)

  • Network Interface type is VMXNET3, not E1000.
  • devices.hotplug=false is configured in Virtual Machine Configuration Settings.
  • If disk space is a concern, virtual machine memory is reserved to reduce .vswp file size.
  • If Citrix App Layering:
    • Paravirtual controller is not added.
    • Boot firmware is BIOS, not EFI.
  • Windows 10 version is supported by Citrix VDA version, and supported by App Layering version.
  • VMware Tools version is current.

VDAs – Master Image Build

  • Master Image build process is documented.
  • Master Image virtual machine was built from scratch – not converted from a physical machine.
  • Security scan of the VDA Master Images shows compliance with enterprise security requirements.
  • Master Image updates:
    • Master Image maintenance is automated – e.g. SCCM can push updates to Master Images. A script can push Master Images to Catalogs.
    • Software Deployment team notifies the Master Image maintainers when applications or Windows require an update.
    • Master Image is sealed before shutdown – e.g. antivirus is generalized, SCCM Client is generalized – Base Image Script Framework (BIS-F) can automate this
    • Master Image updates are tested before deployed to production. QA testing. Canary testing.
    • Master Image snapshots are deleted after a period of time.
  • Antivirus is installed. Antivirus is optimized for non-persistent machines (aka VDI).
  • Other IT agents (e.g. software auditing, SCCM Agent) are optimized for non-persistent machines.
  • Local Groups:
    • Administrators group does not contain any non-administrators.
    • Direct Access Users group only contains authorized RDP users.
  • Citrix Optimizer or similar has removed Windows 10 Store Apps.
  • Windows Default profile was not modified – instead use group policy to control Windows appearance.
  • Windows Updates are current (i.e. last install date is within the last 60 days).
  • C: drive permissions are changed so Users can’t create folders on root of C: drive.
  • Power management is set to High Performance with no sleep timers.
  • If Citrix Provisioning:
    • Pagefile is shrunk so it fits on PVS cache disk – there’s no need to move the pagefile since PVS will move it for you. Just make sure it’s small.
    • Event Logs are moved to PVS cache disk.
  • Customer Experience Improvement Program is disabled in VDA registry.
  • Office 365 Shared Computer Activation is enabled.
    • FSLogix is implemented for Outlook search roaming.

Citrix App Layering

  • Prefer automated (e.g. SCCM) Master Image updates over manual App Layering layer updates – if SCCM is mature, then there’s no need for App Layering.
  • Prefer SCCM-managed dedicated desktops over User Layers – SCCM is a known technology. User Layers are proprietary to Citrix and might not support every application.
  • Enterprise Layer Manager (ELM) version is current – ELM updates are required to support newer Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) and newer Windows 10. There’s no LTSR version of ELM.
  • Citrix Provisioning Agent version matches the ELM version.
  • Directory Junction Bind account is a service account, not a regular user whose password expires.
    • LDAP is Secure (Use SSL).
  • Administrator role membership is periodically audited to ensure only authorized users are granted access.
  • ELM is backed up. Or layers are periodically exported from ELM.
  • Group Policy controls membership of local groups in VDA machines – e.g. add Domain Admins to local Administrators group.
  • Antivirus is configured properly for Layering.
  • Hypervisor Connector uses a service account with limited permissions.
  • Connector cache is enabled to speed up layering operations.
  • File servers hosting Elastic Layers and User Layers are monitored for performance issues and capacity planning.
  • User Layers are backed up, replicated, etc.

Citrix Provisioning

Provisioning Servers:

  • Provisioning Servers version matches the Delivery Controller version.
  • Multiple Provisioning Servers for High Availability.
    • Hypervisor Anti-affinity is configured.
  • Sufficient RAM for vDisk caching in memory – around 2-3 GB of memory per active vDisk.
  • Only one NIC per Provisioning Server – simplifies the configuration.
  • Server Bootstrap has multiple Provisioning Servers listed.
  • Threads times Ports are sufficient for the number of target devices.
  • vDisk Boot Menu is disabled in the registry – enables maintenance mode Target Devices to automatically boot from maintenance mode vDisks.
  • Antivirus has exclusions for Citrix Provisioning.
  • Provisioning Server performance metrics are monitored and alerted.
    • NIC throughput is not saturated.

Provisioning Farm Properties:

  • Offline database is enabled.
  • Auditing is enabled.
  • Administrators list only contains authorized administrators, preferably from an Active Directory Group.
  • Customer Experience Improvement Program is disabled.
  • For AlwaysOn Availability Group, MultiSubnetFailover is configured in the database connection string.

vDisks:

  • If local storage, vDisk files are identical on all Provisioning Servers.
  • vDisk files are VHDX, not VHD – faster version merging.
  • vDisks are sized dynamic, not fixed – Saves disk space. Standard Mode vDisks don’t grow so no performance impact.
  • vDisk files are defragmented.
  • vDisk files are backed up.
  • vDisk updates are automated.

Target Devices:

  • Target Device Boot Method is highly available – Target Devices on same subnet Provisioning Servers. Or DHCP Option 66 with TFTP Load Balancing. Or Boot ISO/Boot Partition has multiple Provisioning Server addresses.
    • DHCP is highly available. Subnet’s router forwards DHCP requests to multiple DHCP servers. Replicated DHCP scope.
  • vDisk Write cache is configured for Target Device RAM with overflow to disk – health check script should periodically verify this.
  • WriteCache folders on Provisioning Servers are empty – no server-side caching.
  • If KMS, slmgr.vbs /dlv shows a unique KMS CMID for each Target Device machine – another option is Active Directory-based activation.
  • Target Devices are evenly distributed across multiple Provisioning servers.
  • System Reserved Partition is removed from inside vDisk.
  • VMware Tools in Target Devices (vDisks) is up to date.
  • Target Device Software version matches the Citrix Provisioning version.
  • Target Device status shows low number of retries.

Group Policies and Active Directory

  • VDAs are placed in VDA-only OUs, no users – group policies apply to VDAs without affecting physical endpoints.
    • Separate OUs per Delivery Group – different group policies apply to different Delivery Groups.
  • Master Images are located in VDA OUs – computer-level GPO settings apply to the Master Images to avoid GPO timing issues on linked clones.
  • Block Inheritance OUs and Enforced GPOs are minimized.
  • .admx templates in SYSVOL > PolicyDefinitions are current – Windows 10 templates, Office templates, Citrix templates, etc.
  • Group Policy Loopback Processing Mode is enabled.
  • Duplicate, conflicting GPO settings are minimized – e.g. Group Policy Loopback Processing Mode is sometimes enabled in several GPOs.
    • Group Policy Results shows the actual GPO settings that applied to a specific session.
  • Lockdown GPO applies to non-administrators that log into VDA machines. Lockdown GPO doesn’t apply to administrators.
  • Remote Desktop Session Host (RDSH) session timeouts are configured in a Microsoft GPO.
  • AppLocker or similar prevents users from running unauthorized executables (e.g. ransomware).
  • Initial application configuration is automated using group policy – e.g. auto configure application database connections, remove first time usage prompts.
  • Group Policy changes are tested in separate Test GPOs and separate Test VDAs before applying to production.
  • Monitoring tool shows group policy processing duration during logon.

Citrix Policies

  • Citrix Policies are configured in a Group Policy Object, not in Citrix Studio – a GPO can apply to multiple Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) farms in multiple datacenters. Citrix Studio is single farm only.
    • Citrix Policies are not configured in both Citrix Studio and Group Policy – avoids confusion over which setting wins
    • If configured in Citrix Studio, and if multiple farms/sites, then Citrix Policy settings are identical in all farms/sites.
  • Citrix Group Policy Management plug-in on GPMC machines is same version included with CVAD ISO.
  • Unfiltered policy is on the bottom of the list (lowest priority) – most specific filters on top, least specific filters on bottom.
  • Client drive mapping, client clipboard, client printing, and client USB are disabled when connecting from external (e.g. SmartAccess) – only enabled by exception.
  • Client printing is set to Use Universal Print Driver only – avoids installing print drivers on VDA machines.
  • Audio is set to Medium quality – High Quality uses more bandwidth than Medium Quality.
  • Time zone redirection is configured in both Citrix Policy and RDSH Microsoft Group Policy.
  • For HDX Insight, ICA Round-Trip Time policy is enabled.
  • Visual quality and video codec settings are not modified from the defaults.
    • Legacy Graphics Mode is disabled.
  • Adaptive Transport (EDT) is enabled – it’s default disabled in 7.15. MTU might need to be decreased.
  • Session Reliability is not disabled.
  • RDSH Session Timers are configured in Microsoft GPO, not Citrix Policy – Citrix Policy setting description shows if setting applies to Server OS or not.

Citrix Workspace Environment Management (WEM)

  • Prefer Group Policies over WEM – WEM requires extra infrastructure, extra learning, extra administration, and extra support. Some WEM user settings are per-machine (per configuration set) only. WEM can’t replace group policies since there’s currently no .admx support.
    • Citrix Profile Management and Microsoft Folder Redirection are configured using Microsoft Group Policy, not WEM – Group Policies are well known. WEM is proprietary to Citrix and requires WEM skills to troubleshoot.
  • WEM is within two versions of the latest – there’s no LTSR version of WEM.
    • WEM Consoles and WEM Agents match WEM Server version.
  • Multiple load balanced WEM Servers for High Availability.
    • If multiple WEM servers are on the same hypervisor cluster, then Hypervisor anti-affinity is configured for the multiple WEM servers.
    • WEM Agents point to WEM Server load balanced FQDN, not individual server.
    • WEM Console points to single WEM Server, not load balanced FQDN.
  • WEM Brokers are close the VDAs – WEM configuration can be exported/imported into WEM implementations in multiple data centers.
  • WEM Database is hosted on an AlwaysOn Availability Group or other Highly Available SQL solution.
    • SQL database is backed up. SQL database recovery is documented and tested.
  • In WEM 1909+, Infrastructure Service Enable performance tuning for Windows Communication Framework is enabled and set to the number of concurrent WEM Agents that will be connected to this one WEM server. Maximum value is 3000. ūüí°
  • Antivirus exclusions are configured for Citrix WEM.
  • WEM .admx group policy template in SYSVOL > PolicyDefinitions is updated whenever WEM Servers are updated.
  • Settings are in WEM, or Group Policy, but not both – helps troubleshooting. Reduces confusion.
  • Bypass ie4uinit Check is enabled (Advanced Settings > Service Options) – for faster logons.
  • Drive mappings and printer mappings are moved to WEM and processed asynchronously (Advanced Settings > Agent Options).
  • Check Application Existence is enabled (Advanced Settings > Agent Options) – doesn’t create shortcut unless application exists
  • CPU Optimization is enabled – Memory management trades memory for disk; which is cheaper? Process exclusions might be needed.
    • In WEM 1909 and newer, CPU Spike Protection = Auto instead of Customize. ūüí°
  • Fast logoff is enabled.
  • Unused action types are disabled from processing (Advanced Settings > Main Configuration) – speeds up logons.
  • Run Once enabled for Actions and scenarios that support it – speeds up logons.
  • WEM Agent Offline mode is enabled.
  • Computer startup script refreshes WEM Agent cache on each VDA reboot.
    • Script has correct Agent installation path and correct service name since they changed in 1909 and newer. ūüí°
  • WEM Logs are reviewed for problems – enable debug logging. Look for Active Directory timeouts.
  • WEM Server performance is monitored for metric thresholds and future capacity issues.
  • WEM Server recovery is documented and tested.

Citrix Profile Management and Folder Redirection

  • No mandatory profiles on Windows 10 – benchmarks show slower performance.
  • Profile Management is configured in Group Policy, not Citrix Policy or Citrix WEM – Group Policy is the most reliable and most well-known option.
  • Profile file share:
    • File server is close to the VDAs – users log into VDAs that are closest to the file server (aka home site).
    • File share is highly available.
    • No DFS multi-master replication. Single target only – neither Citrix nor Microsoft support merge replication.
    • Profiles are backed up and/or replicated. Recovery process is documented and tested.
    • Different profile folders for different operating system versions and/or different Delivery Groups.
    • NTFS permissions of individual user folders in the file share only grant access to the one user – no Users, no Domain Users, and no Authenticated Users.
    • Use TreeSize or similar to see profile size – adjust profile exclusions if too big.
    • Antivirus is not slowing down profile file transfer performance – time how long it takes to copy a profile folder to the local machine.
    • File servers are monitored for performance issues, including disk latency and free disk space.
  • Profile Management .admx file in SYSVOL > PolicyDefinitions matches the VDA version (or date).
  • Profile Management logs are stored on UNC share instead of local C: drive, especially if the VDAs are non-persistent.
    • Only Domain Computers have Modify permission to the Logs share – Users don’t need any permission.
  • Profile Management logs contain at least a few days of logons – if only a few minutes, then too much information is being logged and Log Settings GPO setting should be modified.
  • Profile streaming is enabled – speeds up logons.
  • Active Write Back is disabled – places extra load on file servers for not much benefit.
  • Customer Experience Improvement Program is disabled.
  • Locally cached profiles are deleted at logoff from RDSH machines that don’t reboot often.
  • No Start Menu roaming issues – might need ResetCache registry value.
  • Microsoft FSLogix is implemented for Outlook Search roaming – better than UPM’s Outlook search roaming.

Folder Redirection:

  • Folder Redirection is configured in Microsoft GPO settings, not in Citrix Profile Management settings – Microsoft GPO configuration is most reliable, most known, and can migrate existing files.
  • No AppData redirection – slows down applications.
  • “Grant the user exclusive rights” option is unchecked – allows administrators to access redirected profile folders.
  • Folder Redirection file share:
    • File share is highly available.
    • No DFS multi-master replication. Single target only – neither Citrix nor Microsoft support merge replication.
    • Redirected Folders are backed up and/or replicated. Recovery process is documented and tested.
    • NTFS permissions of individual user folders in the file share only grant access to the one user – no Users, no Domain Users, and no Authenticated Users.
    • Antivirus is not slowing down folder redirection performance.
    • File servers are monitored for performance issues, including disk latency and free disk space.

Home Directories:

  • File server is close to the VDAs – users log into VDAs that are closest to the file server (aka home site).
  • File share is highly available.
  • No DFS multi-master replication. Single target only – neither Citrix nor Microsoft support merge replication.
  • Home Directories are backed up and/or replicated. Recovery process is documented and tested.
  • NTFS permissions of individual user folders in the file share only grant access to the one user – no Users, no Domain Users, and no Authenticated Users.
  • Antivirus is not slowing down file transfer performance – time how long it takes to copy a Home Directory folder to the local machine.
  • File servers are monitored for performance issues, including disk latency and free disk space.

Endpoint Devices

  • Prefer Windows 10 endpoints over thin clients – thin clients don’t support all Citrix functionality (e.g. local printing, browser content redirection). ThinKiosk can lock down Windows 10 endpoints.
  • Newest VDAs and newest Workspace apps have better WAN performance than LTSR 7.15.
  • Browser Content Redirection offloads video (e.g. YouTube) from VDAs to endpoint – reduces CPU consumption in the data center.
  • Receiver and/or Workspace app is periodically (e.g. twice per year) updated by endpoint management team.
  • Workspace app (or Receiver) ADMX templates in SYSVOL > PolicyDefinitions are current.
  • Group Policy adds StoreFront URL to Local Intranet zone.
  • Group Policy pushes StoreFront URL to Workspace app (or Receiver) – so users don’t have to enter the URL.
  • Pass-through authentication is enabled for internal PCs – SSON Configuration Checker can verify proper configuration.
  • HKCU\Software\Citrix\Dazzle\Sites\store\type shows DS, not PNA – store added as Delivery Services (StoreFront), not PNAgent (legacy).
  • Internal Beacon at HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Receiver\SR\Store\#\Beacons\Internal\Addr0 is internally reachable only – not reachable externally.
  • External Beacon¬†at HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Receiver\SR\Store\#\Beacons\External¬†does not include citrix.com – ping.citrix.com is OK.
  • EDT protocol (aka Adaptive Transport) is enabled. Director shows HDX protocol as UDP – Remote Display Analyzer can analyze problems with the graphics/codec.
  • HDX Insight: Newest VDAs and newest Workspace app have less AppFlow CPU impact on ADC than LTSR 7.15 VDAs.

Citrix ADC

  • ADC Admins have subscribed to Citrix Security Bulletins at https://support.citrix.com/user/alerts
  • ADC firmware build is not vulnerable to Authentication Bypass Vulnerability. ūüí°
  • ADC firmware updates are tested on separate test ADC appliances before performed in production. Test ADC appliances have test VIPs – application owners can test their VIPs on test ADC before firmware is upgraded in production.
  • ADC VPX on vSphere:
    • ADC NICs are VMXNET3, not E1000.
    • If ADC 12.0 or older, no vMotion/DRS (not supported).
    • In 12.1 and newer, DRS Cluster Anti-affinity is configured for the VPX appliances in the same HA pair.
    • CPU/Memory are reserved. Yield CPU is not enabled.
  • ADC license does not expire any time soon.
  • Physical ADC:
    • LOM port is connected and configured.
    • LOM nsroot password is changed from the default.
    • No VLAN is connected to multiple active interfaces unless those interfaces are in a port channel.
  • ADC nsroot password is not nsroot. nsroot password is managed by Privileged Identity Management tool. Admins don’t use nsroot to login.
  • Management authentication is configured for external authentication server, typically LDAP.
    • LDAP is load balanced instead of multiple LDAP Policies to individual LDAP servers – avoids premature account lockout.
    • LDAP is encrypted: LDAPS on port 636.
    • LDAP Bind account is a service account – not a regular user whose password expires.
    • LDAP Search Filter only allows ADC Admins Active Directory Group to authenticate.
  • If TACACS, firmware is 12.0 build 57 or newer to prevent TACACS Accounting from blocking AAA.
  • nsroot account has external authentication disabled.
  • No local ADC accounts except nsroot.
  • NTP and Time Zone are configured.
  • Syslog is configured to send logs to external SIEM, especially if ADC is performing authentication.
  • SNMP Traps are sent to Citrix ADM appliance.
    • Thresholds are configured for CPU and Memory alarms.
  • Customer Experience Improvement Program (CUXIP) is disabled.
  • Recommended TCP Profile Settings are configured.
  • Drop Invalid HTTP requests is enabled in HTTP global settings.
  • Secure Access Only is enabled on all NSIPs and all management-enabled SNIPs – check both nodes of High Availability pair.
    • Management certificate has no certificate errors.
  • Networking:
    • If Dedicated Management Network, Policy Based Routes (PBR) are configured for NSIP reply traffic and NSIP-initiated traffic.
    • Unused network interfaces are disabled.
    • ADC instance is connected to only one security zone – if connected to multiple security zones, then a firewall is bypassed.
    • Default route should be Internet facing, or a data VLAN – not NSIP VLAN.
    • Only one default route – extra default routes can come from HA pairing or hardware migration.
  • Unused ADC configurations are removed – unused server objects, unused policies, etc.
  • Citrix ADM monitors and backs up the ADC appliances.
  • ADC Dashboard shows that CPU, Memory, and Throughput have not exceeded appliance capacity or appliance licensing.
  • /var/core and /var/crash do not have recent crash dumps.

ADC High Availability Pair

  • Firmware build is identical on both nodes.
  • Installed Licenses are identical on both nodes.
  • NTP and time zones are configured on both appliances – Configuration node shows System Time.
  • Unused interfaces are disabled.
  • HA is synchronizing without error.
  • Both HA nodes are set to ENABLED – not STAYPRIMARY and/or STAYSECONDARY.
  • Fail-safe mode is enabled.
  • “show ha node” shows heartbeats across all interfaces – no “interfaces on which heartbeats are not seen”.
  • High Availability failover has been tested, including RADIUS authentication, which might come from a different source IP.

ADC SDX

  • LOM port is connected and configured.
    • LOM nsroot password is not nsroot.
  • No hardware problems shown on SDX SVM dashboard page.
  • SDX firmware is current – should be same or newer than the VPX firmware.
  • SDX SVM nsroot password is not nsroot. nsroot password is complex. Admins don’t use nsroot to login.
  • Management authentication is configured for external authentication server, typically LDAP.
    • LDAP is load balanced instead of multiple LDAP Policies to individual LDAP servers – avoids premature account lockout.
    • LDAP is encrypted: LDAPS on port 636.
    • LDAP Bind account is a service account – not a regular user whose password expires.
    • LDAP Search Filter only allows ADC SDX Admins Active Directory Group to authenticate.
  • No local accounts except nsroot.
  • No certificate errors when accessing SVM management using htttps.
    • HTTPS is forced in System Settings – HTTP is not allowed.
  • Multiple DNS servers are configured in Networking Configuration – initial setup only asks for one DNS server.
  • Channels are created at SDX SVM instead of inside VPX instances.
  • NTP is configured and enabled.
  • Syslog is configured.
  • SNMP traps are sent to Citrix ADM.
  • The number of SDX instance licenses installed matches what’s owned at http://mycitrix.com/
  • SDX SVM Backups are configured with External Transfer – or download periodically – or ADM.
  • VPX Instances:
    • Platinum Edition license is assigned to instances.
    • SSL Chips are assigned to VPX instances.
    • All SDX hardware is allocated to VPX instances – If not, why not?
    • Production instances typically have Dedicated CPU cores. Test/Dev instances typically have Shared CPU.
    • VLANs are specified inside VPX instances instead of at instance properties on SDX Management Service – avoids reboot if you need to change the VLAN configuration.
    • No VMACs in instance interface settings.

ADC Load Balancing and SSL

  • Load Balancing configurations are documented.
  • Monitors do more than just telnet – e.g. LDAP monitor performs LDAP query.
    • LDAP monitor bind account uses service account, not domain admin.
    • LDAP monitor is filtered to cn=builtin – to reduce result size.
    • RADIUS monitor looks for response code 2 or 3.
  • If multiple Virtual Servers for multiple ports on the same VIP, configure Persistency Group – e.g. Horizon Load Balancing.
  • Rewrite policies remove web server header information (Server, X-Powered-By, etc.)
  • SSL Labs SSL Server Test shows A or A+ grade for all Internet-facing SSL vServers.
  • Redirect Virtual Servers are UP (Responder method) instead of DOWN (Backup URL method).
  • Custom (non-default) ciphers are bound to every SSL Virtual Server – see Citrix Networking SSL / TLS Best Practices.
  • SSL v3 and TLS v1.0 are disabled on every SSL Virtual Server.
  • SSL Renegotiation is set to NONSECURE: configured globally, or in SSL Profiles (including default profile).
  • Root certificate is not linked to intermediate certificate.
  • Certificates are not expired.
  • ADM alerts ADC administrators when certificates are soon to expire.
  • ADM Analytics is enabled for the HTTP Virtual Servers.
    • ADM Web Insight is viewed.
  • Bot Management (13.0 build 41+) and/or Web App Firewall are configured if ADC Premium Edition.
    • ADM Security Insight is enabled and viewed.

Citrix ADM

  • ADM exists and manages all ADC appliances.
    • Prompt credentials for instance login is enabled in ADM System Settings – if ADM does Single Sign-on to instances, then all instance changes are logged as nsroot instead of ADM user.
  • ADM firmware version is 12.1 build 54.13 and later or 13.0 build 41.20 and later – security vulnerability – many bugs are fixed in ADM 12.1 build 53 and newer. ūüí°
    • ADM Agents and DR nodes have same firmware version as ADM – check /var/mps/log/install_state
  • Two DNS servers are configured in ADM Network Configuration – initial setup only asks for one DNS server.
  • Two ADM appliances in High Availability mode with Floating IP – provides redundancy.
  • Every High Availability node and DR node has same disk size.
  • ADM nsroot password is not nsroot. nsroot password is complex. Admins don’t use nsroot to login.
  • Management authentication is configured for external authentication server, typically LDAP.
    • LDAP is load balanced instead of multiple LDAP Policies to individual LDAP servers – avoids premature account lockout.
    • LDAP is encrypted: LDAPS on port 636.
    • LDAP Bind account is a service account – not a regular user whose password expires.
    • LDAP Search Filter only allows ADM Admins Active Directory Group to authenticate.
  • No local accounts except nsroot.
  • No certificate errors when accessing ADM management using htttps.
    • HTTPS is forced in System Settings – HTTP is not allowed
  • Time zone is configured.
  • NTP is configured and enabled.
  • ADM Database is not full. Sufficient disk space.
  • Sufficient ADM CPU/Memory – verify at System > Statistics or System > Deployment.
  • SSL Dashboard alert notifications are enabled to warn of upcoming certificate expiration.
  • Event Rules are configured to email ADC administrators of Critical or Major ADC alarms.
  • ADC Instance Backup settings on ADM:
    • Number of ADC instance backups retained is sufficient for restoring from history.
    • ADC Backups are transferred to external SFTP, SCP, or FTP server.
    • ADC Restore process is documented and tested.
  • VIP Licensing:
    • Installed license count on ADM matches the licenses owned at http://mycitrix.com.
    • Licenses are assigned to Virtual Servers that need Analytics (e.g. HDX Insight) or Applications tab.
    • AppFlow/Insight is enabled on Gateway and HTTP Virtual Servers.
    • License expiration notifications are enabled.
  • Private IP Blocks are configured for geo mapping of ADC instances and Analytics sessions.
  • Analytics Thresholds are configured – e.g. ICA Latency threshold.
  • Session Reliability on HA Failover is enabled on ADC instances in ICA Parameters – if not enabled, then sessions drop on failover.
  • ADM HDX Insight is linked to Director Premium Edition using https protocol, not http protocol.

Citrix Gateway ICA Proxy

Gateway Virtual Server:

  • SSL Labs SSL Server Test shows A or A+ when it scans the Gateway external FQDN.
  • If ICA Only is unchecked on the Gateway Virtual Server, then System > Licenses shows sufficient Maximum Citrix Gateway Users Allowed.
  • Gateway Virtual Server Maximum Users is 0, which means unlimited.
  • TCP Profile is configured with Recommended TCP Profile Settings.
  • DTLS is enabled on the Virtual Server for EDT protocol.
    • UDP ports are open on firewall from Internet and to VDAs.
    • Director Session Details shows HDX protocol as UDP.
  • ICA Connections shows port 2598 (Session Reliability enabled), not 1494.
  • Gateway communication to StoreFront is https protocol, not http.
  • Gateway communication to StoreFront is load balanced to multiple StoreFront servers – not a single StoreFront server.
  • STAs on Citrix Gateway matches StoreFront configuration.
  • If EPA is used for SmartAccess, then Endpoint Analysis Libraries are updated.

Gateway Authentication:

  • Encrypted LDAP:
    • LDAP is load balanced instead of multiple LDAP Policies to individual LDAP servers – avoids premature account lockout.
    • LDAP is encrypted: LDAPS on port 636.
    • LDAP Bind account is a service account – not a regular user whose password expires.
    • LDAP Search Filter only allows authorized remote users in an Active Directory group to authenticate.
  • Two-factor authentication – RADIUS:
    • For Workspace app or Receiver, password fields are swapped.
    • Both factors are required to login. Can’t bypass second factor.
    • RADIUS tested from both High Availability nodes (perform failover).
  • SAML Authentication:
    • Prefer RADIUS over SAML so that ADC will have access to the user’s password to facilitate Single Sign-on to the VDA machines.
    • If SAML response does not provide user’s password, then Federated Authentication Service (FAS) is deployed .
    • For Workspace app support of SAML, SAML is configured in nFactor (AAA), not Gateway – requires ADC 12.1 and newest Workspace app.
    • SAML iDP Signing certificate is not expired. ADC administrators know how to update the Signing certificate.
  • Native OTP:
    • OTP Active Directory attribute is encrypted

Citrix ADC GSLB

  • If a DNS name resolves to multiple IP addresses, then the DNS name should be GSLB-enabled for automatic failover.
  • DNS Records are delegated to two or more ADC ADNS services, usually in separate data centers.
    • NS records and SOA records are added to ADC for delegated domain names and/or delegated sub zones.
  • All ADC nodes that have ADNS listeners for the same DNS name have identical GSLB configuration.
  • Public GSLB Services have monitors that verify remote Internet connectivity – don’t give out IP if users can’t reach it.
  • Separate ADC appliances for public DNS and internal DNS – If both are on one appliance, then how are the DNS configurations separated?
  • RPC nodes for Metric Exchange Protocol (MEP) should have Secure enabled.
  • Firewall should only allow the MEP endpoints to communicate over 3009 – don’t open to whole Internet.
  • If Static Proximity:
    • Static Proximity database is current.
    • GSLB Services show correct geo location.
    • Custom Entries are added for internal subnets.
  • If DNS Views, DNS Views are configured on all GSLB Services – if GSLB Service doesn’t have a DNS View, then that GSLB Service might not function correctly.
  • If Active/Active GSLB load balancing, then site persistence is functioning correctly.
  • DNS security options are configured to prevent ADNS Denial of Service.

Citrix Director 1909

Last Modified: Sep 22, 2019 @ 9:55 am

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ūüí° = Recently Updated

Change Log

Director Licensing – Premium Edition

Here’s the list of Director features that require Premium Edition (aka Platinum Edition) licensing.

  • Up to a year‚Äôs worth of performance data that provides a comprehensive view of capacity trends
  • Application Probing
  • Alerting including SNMP integration
  • SCOM alerts
  • Single session OS (aka Desktop OS) and Multi-session OS (aka Server OS)¬†usage reporting
  • Create customized reports
  • Reboot warnings
  • NetScaler MAS integration – HDX Insight
  • Override control over roaming sessions

See Citrix Docs Feature compatibility matrix for a list of which Director feature came with each version, and the licensing Edition needed for each feature.

Install/Upgrade Director 1909 on Standalone Server

Current Release vs LTSR – Director 1909 and Director 1906 are Current Releases, which are only supported for 6 months from their release date, and you are expected to upgrade them every 3-6 months. If you prefer a release with a longer support cycle, see Director 7.15 LTSR.

Install on Delivery Controller? – The Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) Delivery Controller metainstaller has an option to install Director on the Delivery Controller machine. Or you can install Director on separate, dedicated machines.

  • If Director will connect to multiple sites/farms, then install Director on its own servers.
  • For small environments, it might be OK to install Director on the Delivery Controller machines. Otherwise, Director is usually installed on separate machines.

Director and Delivery Controller versions – There’s no point in upgrading to Director 1909 if your Delivery Controllers are not also 1909. Director will inform you if your Delivery Controllers are not the same version as Director.

Installation guidance – For Director installation guidance, see the following:

Scripted install РTo install and configure Director using a script, see Dennis Span Citrix Director unattended installation with PowerShell.

Manual installation – To install Director manually:

  1. Start with running AutoSelect.exe from the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 1909 ISO.

  2. In the Extend Deployment section, on the bottom left, click Citrix Director.
  3. In the Licensing Agreement page, select I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  4. In the Core Components page, click Next.
  5. In the Delivery Controller page, it will ask you for the location of one Delivery Controller in each farm. Only enter one Delivery Controller per farm. If you have multiple Director servers, each Director server can point to a different Delivery Controller in the farm.
    • From Citrix Docs: Director automatically discovers all other Delivery Controllers in the same Site and falls back to those other Delivery Controllers if the Controller you specified fails. Click¬†Test Connection, and then click¬†Add.
  6. You can optionally force SSL/TLS for the Monitoring service by following the instructions at¬†Data Access Security at Citrix Developer Documentation. Also see¬†CTX224433¬†Error: ‚ÄúCannot Retrieve Data‚ÄĚ on Citrix Director Dashboard After Securing OData Interface Through TLS.
  7. In the Features page, click Next.
  8. In the Firewall page, click Next.
  9. In the Summary page, click Install.
  10. A machine restart will probably be needed.
  11. After the restart, login.
    1. If you see a¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media window, don’t click anything.
    2. Mount the Citrix_Virtual_Apps_and_Desktops_7_1909.iso.
    3. Go back to the¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media window. On the left, expand¬†This PC and click¬†DVD Drive. Then click¬†Select Folder.
    4. Installation will resume.
  12. In the Finish page, click Finish.
  13. In IIS Manager, go to Default Web Site > Director > Application Settings, find Service.AutoDiscoveryAddresses, and make sure it points to one Delivery Controller in the farm, and not to localhost. From Citrix Docs: Director automatically discovers all other Delivery Controllers in the same Site and falls back to those other Delivery Controllers if the Delivery Controller you specified fails.
  14. If you built multiple Director servers, use NetScaler ADC to load balance them.
  15. If you are upgrading Director, run C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Director\tools\DirectorConfig.exe /upgrade to complete the upgrade process.
  16. Reconfigure the default domain in LogOn.aspx since upgrading overwrote your domain name configuration.
  17. For info on the new monitoring features in Director, see Use Director below.

Director Default Webpage

From CTX223907 How to Make Director the Default Page within IIS: If Director is installed on a standalone server, do the following to set /Director as the default path.

  1. Open Notepad elevated (as administrator) and paste the following text:
    <script type="text/javascript">
    <!--
    window.location="https://director.corp.com/Director";
    // -->
    </script>
  2. Adjust the window.location line to match your FQDN.
  3. Select File > Save As and browse to the IIS folder, by default C:\inetpub\wwwroot is the IIS folder.
  4. Select the Save as type to All types.
  5. Type a file name with an html extension, and select Save.
  6. Open IIS Manager.
  7. Select the SERVERNAME node (top-level), and double-click Default Document, as shown in the following screen shot:
  8. On the right, click Add…,
  9. Enter the file name of the .html file provided in Step 5.
  10. Ensure the .html file is located at the top of the list, as shown in the following screen shot:

Director Spinning Circle

If after login to Director the spinning circle doesn’t go away…

Do the following to fix it:

  1. Edit the file C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Director\web.config using an elevated text editor.
  2. Search for <serviceHostingEnvironment (line 273).
  3. Add the following attribute:
    multipleSiteBindingsEnabled="true"

Also see CTX202564 Citrix Director Becomes Unresponsive after Submitting the Credentials when IIS X-Frame-Options is enabled

Director Domain Field

On the Director servers, locate and edit the ‚ÄėLogOn.aspx‚Äô file. By default you can find it at C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Director\Logon.aspx

In line 450¬†you will have the following. To find the line, search for¬†ID=”Domain”.

<asp:TextBox ID="Domain" runat="server" CssClass="text-box" onfocus="showIndicator(this);" onblur="hideIndicator(this);"></asp:TextBox>

In the ID=”Domain” element, insert a Text¬†attribute and set it to your domain name. Don’t change or add any other attributes. Save the file.

<asp:TextBox ID="Domain" runat="server" Text="Corp" CssClass="text-box" onfocus="showIndicator(this);" onblur="hideIndicator(this);"></asp:TextBox>

This configuration prepopulates the domain field text box with your domain name and still allow the user to change it, if that should be required. Note: this only seems to work if Single Sign-on is disabled.

Citrix CTX227936 How to hide the domain from Director Logon Page:

  1. Edit the file C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Director\LogOn.aspx using an elevated text editor.
  2. Locate the tag which starts with: <asp:Label ID="DomainLabel"
  3. Immediately prior to that label, locate the tag: <div class='label eight'>
  4. Add the following before <div class=’label eight’>: <div style='display:none'>
  5. In between “</asp:Textbox> <br />” add the following: </div>

Director Tweaks

Session timeout

By default the idle time session limit of the Director is 245 min. If you wish to change the timeout, here is how to do it.

  1. Log on to the Director Server as an administrator
  2. Open the ‚ÄėIIS Manager‚Äô
  3. Browse to ‚ÄėSitesDefault Web SiteDirector‚Äô in the left hand pane.
  4. Open ‚ÄėSession State‚Äô in the right hand pane
  5. Change the ‚ÄėTime-out (in minutes)‚Äô value under ‚ÄėCookie Settings‚Äô
  6. Click ‚ÄėApply‚Äô in the Actions list

SSL Check

From http://euc.consulting/blog/citrix-desktop-director-2-1: If you are not securing Director with an SSL certificate you will get this error at the logon screen.

To stop this:

  1. Log on to the Director Server as an administrator
  2. Open the ‚ÄėIIS Manager‚Äô
  3. Browse to ‚ÄėSitesDefault Web SiteDirector‚Äô in the left hand pane.
  4. Open ‚ÄėApplication Settings‚Äô in the right hand pane
  5. Set UI.EnableSslCheck to false.

Disable Activity Manager

From Disable the visibility of running applications in the Activity Manager in Advanced Configuration at Citrix Docs: By default, the Activity Manager in Director displays a list of all the running applications and the Windows description in the title bars of any open applications for the user’s session. This information can be viewed by all administrators that have access to the Activity Manager feature in Director. For Delegated Administrator roles, this includes Full administrator, Delivery Group administrator, and Help Desk Administrator.

To protect the privacy of users and the applications they are running, you can disable the Applications tab from listing running applications.

  • On the VDA, modify the registry key located at¬†HKLM\Software\Citrix\Director\TaskManagerDataDisplayed. By default, the key is set to 1. Change the value to 0, which means the information will not be displayed in the Activity Manager.
  • On the server with Director installed, modify the setting that controls the visibility of running applications. By default, the value is true, which allows visibility of running applications in the¬†Applications Change the value to false, which disables visibility. This option affects only the Activity Manager in Director, not the VDA.¬†Modify the value of the following setting:
    UI.TaskManager.EnableApplications = false

Large Active Directory / Multiple Forests

From CTX133013 Desktop Director User Account Search Process is Slow or Fails: By default, all the Global Catalogs for the Active Directory Forest are searched using Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP). In a large Active Directory environment, this query can take some time or even time out.

If multiple forests, see Citrix Blog Post Using Citrix Director in a MultiForest Environment.

  1. In Information Server (IIS) Management, under the Desktop Director site, select Application Settings and add a new value called Connector.ActiveDirectory.ForestSearch. Set it to False. This disables searching any domain except the user’s domain and the server’s domain.
  2. To search more domains, add the searchable domain or domains in the Connector.ActiveDirectory.Domains field.

Site Groups

From Citrix Blog Post Citrix Director 7.6 Deep-Dive Part 4: Troubleshooting Machines:

If there are a large number of machines, the Director administrator can now configure site groups to perform machine search so that they can narrow down searching for the machine inside a site group. The site groups can be created on the Director server by running the configuration tool via command line by running the command:

C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Director\tools\DirectorConfig.exe /createsitegroups

Then provide a site group name and IP address of the delivery controller of the site to create the site group.

Director Configuration Script

Johan Greefkes at Script for configuring Director at Citrix Discussions was kind enough to provide a script that does the following:

  • Sets the Delivery Controllers that Director communicates with
  • Disables SSL Check
  • Sets Logon.aspx file to default to a domain name
  • Adds a footer that displays the name of the Director server

The same¬†DirectorReconfigureWithLogonMod.ps1 script seems to be available at Citrix’s Github\Powershell-Scripts repository.

Director – Saved Filters

From Scott Osborne and Jarian Gibson at Citrix Discussions: In Director, you can create a filter and save it.

The saved filter is then accessible from the Filters menu structure.

The saved filters are stored on each Director server at C:\Inetpub\wwwroot\Director\UserData. Each user has their own saved filters. The saved filters are not replicated across Director servers.

You can instead configure multiple Director servers to store the filters on a shared UNC path: (h/t CTP Jarian Gibson)

  1. Create and share a folder (e.g. DirectorData).
  2. The Director server computer accounts need Modify permission to the share.
  3. On each Director server, run IIS Manager.
  4. Go to Sites > Default Web Site > Director. In the middle, double-click Application Settings.
  5. Change the Service.UserSettingsPath setting to the UNC path of the new share.
  6. Repeat this on other load balanced Director servers.

Director and HDX Insight

You can connect Director to NetScaler Management & Analytics System¬†(NetScaler MAS) or Citrix Insight Center to add Network tabs to Director’s Trends and Machine Details views.¬†Citrix Blog Post¬†Configure Director with NetScaler Management & Analytics System (MAS).

Director Grooming

If Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops is not Platinum Edition or Premium Edition, then all historical Director data is groomed at 30 days.

For Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Platinum Edition or Premium Edition, by default, most of the historical Director data is groomed at 90 days. This can be adjusted up to 367 days by running a PowerShell cmdlet.

  1. On a Delivery Controller, run PowerShell and run asnp Citrix.*

  2. Run Get-MonitorConfiguration to see the current grooming settings.
  3. Run Set-MonitorConfiguration to change the grooming settings.

More details on Monitor Service data aggregation and retention can be found at Data granularity and retention at Citrix Docs.

Director Single Sign-on

You can configure Director to support Integrated Windows Authentication (Single Sign-on). Note: there seem to be issues when not connecting from the local machine or when connecting through a load balancer.

  1. Run IIS Manager. You can launch it from Server Manager (Tools menu), or from the Start Menu, or by running inetmgr.
  2. On the left, expand Sites, expand Default Web Site, and click Director.
  3. In the middle, double-click Authentication in the IIS section.
  4. Right-click Windows Authentication, and Enable it.
  5. Right-click Anonymous Authentication, and Disable it.
  6. Pass-through auth won’t work from another computer until you set the http SPN for the Director server. See¬†Director 7.7 Windows Authentication not working with NS LB at Citrix Discussions.
  7. If Director is not installed on a Controller, then you’ll need to configure Kerberos delegation.
  8. If you are load balancing Director then additional config is required. See Director 7.7 Windows Authentication not working with NS LB at Citrix Discussions for more info.
    1. The FQDN for Director load balancing should be different than the FQDN for StoreFront load balancing.
    2. Create an AD service account that will be used as the Director’s ApplicationPoolIdentity.
    3. Create SPN and link it to the service account.
      setspn -S http/loadbalanced_URL domain\user
    4. Trust the user account for delegation to any service (Kerberos only) (trust the Director servers for delegation is not necessary in this case). You have to create the SPN before you can do this step.
    5. In IIS manager, on the Application Pools (Director), specify the Identity as user we have created in step 1.
    6. In IIS manager, expand Default Web Site, select Director, and open the Configuration Editor (bottom of the middle pane).
    7. Use the drop-down to navigate to the following section: system.webServer/security/authentication/windowsAuthentication
    8. Set useAppPoolCredentials = True, and useKernelMode = False. Click Apply on the top right.

  9. When you connect to Director you will be automatically logged in. You can change the login account by first logging off.
  10. Then change the drop-down to User credentials.

Director – Multiple Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Sites/Farms

  1. Run IIS Manager. You can launch it from Server Manager (Tools menu) or from the Start Menu, or by running inetmgr.
  2. On the left, expand Sites, expand Default Web Site, and click Director.
  3. In the middle pane, double-click Application Settings.
  4. Find the entry for Service.AutoDiscoveryAddresses, and double-click it.
  5. If Director is installed on a Controller, localhost should already be entered.
  6. Add a comma, and the NetBIOS name of one of the controllers in the 2nd Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Site (farm). Only enter one Delivery Controller name. If you have multiple Director servers, you can point each Director server to a different Delivery in the 2nd Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Site (farm).
    1. From Citrix Docs: Director automatically discovers all other Delivery Controllers in the same Site and falls back to those other Delivery Controllers if the Delivery Controller you specified fails.
    2. You can optionally force SSL/TLS for the Monitoring service by following the instructions at¬†Data Access Security at Citrix Developer Documentation. Also see¬†CTX224433¬†Error: ‚ÄúCannot Retrieve Data‚ÄĚ on Citrix Director Dashboard After Securing OData Interface Through TLS.

Director Process Monitoring

Director 7.11 and newer have Process Monitoring, which is detailed in Citrix Blog Post Citrix Director: CPU, Memory Usage and Process Information.

Process Monitoring is disabled by default. To enable it, configure the Enable process monitoring setting in a Citrix Policy. For Citrix Policies in a GPO, find this setting in the computer half of the GPO. Note: this setting could significantly increase the size of the Monitoring database.

Director Alerts and Notifications

Director supports alert conditions and email notifications. This feature requires Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops to be licensed with Premium or Platinum Edition. See Citrix Blog Post Configuring & Managing Alerts and Notifications Using Director for more information.

Director 7.11 added CPU, Memory, and ICT RTT alerts. Citrix Blog Post 7 New Categories in Director for Proactive Notifications & Alerts

Director 1811 adds Hypervisor Alerts from vSphere and Citrix Hypervisor. The alerts are configured in the hypervisor (e.g. vCenter). When triggered, the hypervisor alerts can be viewed in Director. Director can send email notifications when hypervisor alerts are triggered.

To configure alerts in Director:

  1. While logged into Director, at the top of the page, click the Alerts button.
  2. Switch to the Email Server Configuration tab.
  3. Enter your SMTP information, and click Send Test Message. Then click Save.


  4. Switch to the Citrix Alerts Policy tab.
  5. There are four high-level categories of alerts: Site Policy, Delivery Group Policy, Multi-session OS Policy (aka Server OS Policy), and User Policy. Click whichever one you want to configure.

  6. Director has built-in alert policies. All you need to do is add notification email addresses to the built-in policies.
  7. In Director 1811 and newer, in the Site Policy tab, click Edit for the built-in Hypervisor Health policy.

    1. On the bottom right in the Notification preferences section, click Add.
    2. Enter an email address and then click Add.
    3. Click Done when done.
    4. On the bottom, click the Save button.
  8. On the Delivery Group Policy tab, find the built-in Smart Alert, and then click Edit. Note: this Smart Alert might not appear until you create a Delivery Group in Citrix Studio.

    1. Notice the Conditions that are already enabled. You can change them or add more.
    2. On the bottom right, in the Notification preferences section, click Add.
    3. Enter an email address, and click Done.
    4. On the bottom, click Save.
  9. You can create custom Alert Policies by clicking the Create button on any of these tabs.
  10. For Multi-session OS Policy (aka Server OS Policy) and User Policy, there are new ICA RTT alerts. See Citrix Blog Post 7 New Categories in Director for Proactive Notifications & Alerts for details on the new alerts in Director 7.11 and newer.
  11. In Director 7.12 and newer, you can configure alerts to generate an SNMP trap. This is configured in PowerShell as described at Configure alerts policies with SNMP traps at Citrix Docs.
    Set-MonitorNotificationSnmpServerConfiguration        #see Docs for parameter details
    Set-MonitorNotificationPolicy -IsSnmpEnabled $true -Uid <Policy ID>
  12. Citrix has an experimental Desktop Notification Tool. See Citrix Blog Post Desktop Notification Tool For Citrix XenDesktop.

Director – StoreFront Probes

If you are licensed for Premium Edition or Platinum Edition, then you can install probe agents on remote machines, and the probe agents can periodically check if an application can be launched through StoreFront.

  • Director 1906 adds support for probing of Desktops in addition to Applications.

StoreFront Probe 1903 and newer support TLS 1.2 connections through Citrix Gateway 12.1 and newer.

Custom Studio Role for Probe Administrator

  1. Create a new user account just for probe administration (e.g CORP\ProbeAdmin).
  2. In Citrix Studio, at Configuration > Administrators, on the Roles tab, create a new Role with the permissions shown below.

    • Delivery Groups > Read-only
    • Director >¬†Create\Edit\Remove Alert Email Server Configuration
    • Director >¬†Create\Edit\Remove Probe Configurations
    • Director >¬†View Applications page
    • Director >¬†View Configurations page
    • Director >¬†View Trends page
  3. On the Administrators tab, add an administrator, select your ProbeAdmin account, and assign it the custom Probe Administrator role that you just created.

StoreFront HTTP Basic Authentication

  1. In StoreFront Console, right-click your Store, and click Manage Authentication Methods.
  2. Check the box next to HTTP Basic, and click OK.

Install Probe Agent

To automate the installation and configuration of the Probe Agent, see CTA Dennis Span Citrix Application Probe Agent unattended installation.

On one or more remote machines, download and install the Probe Agent.

  1. Download the Citrix Application Probe Agent 1909. Find it on the downloads page after expanding Components that are on the Component ISO but also packaged separately. In CVAD 1906, the Probe Agent is still version 1903.
  2. On a physical machine in a remote office, install Workspace app 1903 or newer if it isn’t installed already.
  3. Run the downloaded CitrixAppProbeAgent_1909.msi.
  4. In the Welcome to the Citrix Probe Agent Setup Wizard page, click Next.
  5. In the End-User License Agreement page, check the box next to I accept the terms, and click Next.
  6. In the Destination Folder page, click Next.
  7. In the Ready to install Citrix Probe Agent page, click Install.
  8. In the Completed the Citrix Probe Agent Setup Wizard page, click Finish.
  9. Apps & features shows the Citrix Probe Agent version as 1909.1.0.0.

Configure Probe Agent

  1. Every Probe Agent machine should have unique StoreFront test user credentials. Create unique accounts for each machine.
  2. From the Start Menu of the remote machine, launch Citrix Probe Agent.
  3. Click Start.
  4. In the Configure Workspace Credentials page, enter the StoreFront Receiver for Web URL.
    1. In 1811 and later, you can also enter a Gateway URL. The Gateway Virtual Server must be configured with RfWebUI theme. Other themes, like X1 theme, does not work.
    2. For TLS 1.2 support, the Probe Agent should be version 1903 or newer.
  5. Enter the username and password for the probe user for this machine.
  6. Click Next.
  7. In the Configure to Display Probe Result page, enter the URL to Director. Make sure you include /Director at the end of the URL.
  8. Enter the Probe Admin credentials, and click Validate.
  9. Select a Site (farm) if there’s more than one.
  10. Click Next.
  11. In the View Summary page, you may close the window.
  12. Login to Director as the Probe Admin account.
  13. On the top middle, click the Configuration button.
  14. At the top of the page, select either Application Probe, or Desktop Probe. Desktop Probe is only visible in Director 1906 and newer.
  15. Click Create Probe.
  16. In the Create Probe page:
    1. Give the probe configuration a name.
    2. Select one or more Applications or Desktops to test.
    3. Select the registered Probe Agent machine(s) to run the probe from.
    4. Enter an email address for probe result notifications.
    5. Select one time per day to run the probe. You can create multiple probe configurations to run the probe multiple times per day.
  17. Click Save.
  18. If you go back to the Configuration page, to edit a probe configuration, select one, and then click the Edit link.
  19. The probe configurations are stored in the Monitoring database so there shouldn’t be any concerns with load balancing of Director.
  20. To view the probe results, on the top, click Trends. Then switch to the Probe Results tab. This page seems to not tell you anything more than if the probe was successful or not.

Director – SCOM Integration

Director 7.8 and newer can display alerts from System Center Operations Manager 2012 R2. This feature requires Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Platinum Edition or Premium Edition.

  1. See Configure SCOM integration at Citrix Docs for detailed configuration instructions. Also see Marius Sandbu Integrating Citrix XenDesktop 7.7 and System Center Operations Manager.
  2. If Director server or System Center Operations Manager server is 2008 R2, then login to the 2008 R2 server, open PowerShell and run Enable-PSRemoting. Yes to everything. This is not needed on Windows Server 2012 R2 servers.
  3. On Director server, run C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Director\tools\DirectorConfig.exe /configscom
  4. FYI, the DirectorConfig.exe /configscom command enables the following features on the Director server: /FeatureName:IIS-NetFxExtensibility45 /FeatureName:IIS-ASPNET45 /FeatureName:WCF-HTTP-Activation45
  5. FYI, the System Center Operations Manager server is listed in IIS Manager at Default Web Site > Director > Application Settings (middle pane) > Connector.SCOM.ManagementServer.
  6. On the System Center Operations Manager server, edit Remote Management Users local group, and add Citrix Admins, and other Director users.
  7. In System Center Operations Manager Console, go to Administration > User Roles, and edit Operations Manager Operators. Add the Citrix Admins, and other Director users.
  8. See Citrix Blog Post SCOM Alerts in Citrix Director for information on how to view System Center Operations Manager alerts in Director.

Director – Custom Reports

In Director 7.12 and newer, in the Trends view, there’s a Custom Reports tab that guides you through creating a custom OData Query. This tab only appears if you have Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Platinum Edition or Premium Edition.

The Monitoring database contains more data than is exposed in Director. To view this data, the Monitoring service has an OData Data Feed that can be queried.

Use Director

The newer Director features usually require Delivery Controllers and VDAs to be at the same version or newer than Director. Director depends on the Monitoring Service that is built into the Delivery Controller. The Monitoring Service gathers data from the VDAs.

See Site Analytics at Citrix Docs.

See the various Troubleshoot topics at Citrix Docs.

New features in Director 1909 and newer ūüí°

Server OS is renamed to Multi-session OS. Desktop OS is renamed to Single session OS.

Analytics button lets you upload Director data to Citrix Cloud Performance Analytics. See Configuring on-premises Sites with Citrix Analytics for Performance at Citrix Docs.

New features in Director 1906 and newer

Session Auto Reconnects:

  • At Trends > Sessions, on the bottom is Session Details. Director 1906 shows you the number of Session Auto Reconnects.
  • If you click the number, you’ll see more info on the reconnect. Note: it might take a few minutes for the reconnect status to appear in Director.

Workspace App Session Startup breakdown:

  • After searching for a user and selecting a session, click Details on the top right.
  • Scroll down and you’ll see the Session Startup section with a new Workspace App Session Startup sub-section.

New features in Director 1903 and newer

  • The Trends views got a face lift.

New features in Director 1811 and newer:

  • Profile Load Drilldown – in a Session Details screen, scroll down to the Logon Duration panel. Hover your mouse over the Profile Load bar and then click Detailed Drilldown. You see the size of profile, and the size of the Folders inside the profile.

  • By default, all folder names are visible. To hide the folder names, add a registry value on the VDA machines:
    • Key = HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Citrix\Director\
      • DWORD Value¬†ProfileFoldersNameHidden¬† = 1
  • The Machine Details panel now shows the status of RDS Licensing for Multi-session OS (aka Server OS, aka RDSH) VDAs.

New features in Director 1808 and newer:

New features in Director 7.18 and newer:

  • In Director, you can view the details of a VDA machine (instead of a user session). If the machine is unregistered, then there’s a link to Health Assistant, which opens Troubleshoot machines¬† at Citrix Docs.

New features in Director 7.16 and newer:

In Director 7.14 and newer, see CTX223927 How to use Director to troubleshoot application launch errors. This feature is configured in Citrix Policy Settings located in the Computer half at Virtual Delivery Agent Settings > Monitoring. Also see Citrix Blog Post Application Related Session Failure Reporting in Citrix Director 7.15.

In Director 7.14 and newer, see CTX223928 How to use Director to monitor storage performance.

Citrix Blog Post Citrix Director Now Provides Disk Usage Information!:

  • IOPS and disk latency data is enabled by default.
  • IOPS and disk latency is pushed to the database from each VDA at 1 hour interval.
  • Approximately 276 KB of disk space is required to store the CPU, memory, IOPS and disk latency data for one VDA over a period of one year.

In Director 7.14 and newer, see CTX223925 How to use Director to monitor NVIDIA GPU usage.

Citrix Director 7.13 and newer have an Application Instances tab on the Filters page that lets you filter published application sessions based on Session Idle Time (RDS sessions only), Application Name, and all other existing fields, like machine name, and so on. Requires Director 7.13, Controller 7.13, VDA 7.13, and Platinum Edition or Premium Edition licensing. See Citrix Blog Post Monitoring Idle Applications and Sessions in Citrix Director. See Troubleshoot applications at Citrix Docs.

If idle time column shows n/a, then you need to wait 10-15 minutes.

In Director 7.13 and newer, the Session Details panel can show if Enlightened Data Transport (EDT, aka HDX on UDP) is enabled in the user’s session. See Citrix Blog Post¬†HDX Adaptive Transport Protocol Monitoring via Director.

George Spiers has a comprehensive guide of all Director 7.12 features at http://www.jgspiers.com/citrix-director/.

Director 7.12 and newer have Connection Failure Details, which is detailed in Citrix Blog Post Director 7.12: Easier Troubleshooting of Machine & Connection Failures. Also see CTX223812 Citrix Director Failure Codes.

Director 7.11 and newer have Process Monitoring, which is detailed in Citrix Blog Post Citrix Director: CPU, Memory Usage and Process Information.

Director 7.9 and newer have Logon Duration improvements.

Citrix Blog Post¬†Interactive Session of Logon Duration in Citrix Director ‚Äď Explained:¬†Interactive Session Duration = Desktop Ready Event Timestamp (EventId 1000 on VDA) ‚Äď User Profile Loaded Event Timestamp (EventId 2 on VDA). More details in the Blog Post.

Citrix Blog Post Director 7.6 Failure Reasons Demystified lists possible failure reasons behind an Unregistered alert, and the true meaning of failure reasons such as Connection Refused and Communication Error. It details each failure reason, defines the meanings of these failures, and lists action items that serve as a starting point for troubleshooting the specific scenario. The list is based on Director 7.6.300.

Citrix Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA) 1909

Last Modified: Nov 16, 2019 @ 2:41 pm

Navigation

Citrix VDA 1909 and 1906 are newer than VDA 7.18

ūüí° = Recently Updated

Change Log

Hardware

Hypervisor Host Hardware

  • G0-EUC Moore‚Äôs law of Windows 10 1903 – Newer versions of Windows 10 have lower density than older versions
  • Citrix Blog Post¬†Citrix Scalability ‚ÄĒ The Rule of 5 and 10:¬†Simply take the number of physical cores in a hypervisor host, multiply it by 5 or 10, and the result will be your Single Server Scalability.¬†Use 5 if you‚Äôre looking for the number of Virtual Desktop VMs you can host on a box, and use 10 if you‚Äôre looking for the number of Virtual Apps user sessions you can host on a box.

Virtual Machine Hardware

  1. Operating system version support: VDA 1909 and VDA 1906 support Windows 10 64-bit (1607 and newer), Windows Server 2019, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2012 R2.
    • For older operating systems (e.g Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2), install VDA 7.15 with the latest Cumulative Update. VDA 7.15 will work with newer Delivery Controllers (e.g. Delivery Controller 1909 and 1903).
    • Windows 10 32-bit is no longer supported as of VDA 1909.
  2. Microsoft TechNet Blog –¬†Say No to Windows 10 Long Term Servicing Channel (LTSC)
    • No Edge
    • From January 2020, Microsoft Office 365 will not be supported on LTSC
    • Non-security operating system fixes and enhancements may not get back-ported to LTSC
  3. CTX224843 Windows 10 compatibility with Citrix Virtual Desktops (XenDesktop)

  4. Hypervisor Support –¬†CTX131239¬†Supported Hypervisors for XenDesktop and Provisioning Services
    • Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) 1811 and newer support vSphere 6.7 Update 3.
  5. Firewall Рthe UDP-based EDT protocol is enabled by default. Make sure the UDP ports are open for ICA/HDX:
    1. UDP 1494
    2. UDP 2598
    3. UDP 443 – from Internet to NetScaler Gateway.
    4. UDP 443 can also be used by internal ICA connections if VDA SSL is configured.
    5. For EDT through NetScaler Gateway, make sure your NetScaler firmware is up to date, preferably 11.1 build 56 or newer. Then enable DTLS on the Gateway Virtual Server.
  6. VDA virtual machine sizing:
    1. For Windows 10 virtual desktops, give the virtual machine: 2+ vCPU and 2+ GB of RAM
    2. For Windows 2012 R2 RDSH, give the virtual machine 8 vCPU, and 24-48 GB of RAM
    3. See Daniel Feller Sizing Windows 2016, Windows 2012 And Windows 10 Virtual Machines
  7. If using RAM caching (MCSIO or PvS), add more RAM for the cache
  8. Remove the floppy drive
  9. Remove any serial or LPT ports
  10. If vSphere:
    1. To reduce disk space, reserve memory. Memory reservations reduce or eliminate the virtual machine .vswp file.
    2. The NIC should be VMXNET3.
    3. For vGPU, if vSphere 6.7 Update 1, set vgpu.hotmigrate.enabled Advanced vCenter Server Setting to true. (source = William Lam How to enable vGPU vMotion in vSphere 6.7 Update 1)
  11. If this VDA will boot from Provisioning Services:
    1. For vSphere, the NIC must be VMXNET3.
    2. For vSphere, configure the CD-ROM to boot from IDE instead of SATA. SATA comes with VM hardware version 10. SATA won’t work with PvS.
  12. Install the latest version of hypervisor drivers (e.g. VMware Tools).
  13. The¬†vSphere Activity Monitoring Feature with NSX Guest Introspection feature uses a TDI driver (vnetflt.sys), which might cause a “Connection Interrupted” message when users log off of Citrix. See¬†CTX221206¬†“Connection Interrupted” error message displayed while logging off ICA session.

If vSphere, disable NIC Hotplug

  1. Users could use the systray icon to Eject the Ethernet Controller. Obviously this is bad.
  2. To disable this functionality, power off the virtual machine.
  3. Once powered off, right-click the virtual machine, and click Edit Settings.
  4. On the VM Options tab, expand Advanced, and then click Edit Configuration.
  5. On the bottom left, enter devices.hotplug. On the right, enter false. Then click Add.
  6. Then click OK a couple times to close the windows.
  7. The VM can then be powered on.

Windows Preparation

  1. Computer Group Policy ‚Äď Make sure the Master VM is in the same OU as the Linked Clones so the Master VM will get the computer-level GPO settings in its registry. Run gpupdate on the master after moving the VM to the correct OU. When Clones are created from the Master, the computer-level GPO settings will already be applied, thus eliminating a timing issue.
  2. If Server OS, disable IE Enhanced Security Configuration in Server Manager > Local Server.
  3. Optionally, go to Action Center (Windows 2012 R2) or Control Panel > Security and Maintenance (Windows 10/2016/2910) to disable User Account Control, and enable SmartScreen.

    1. In Windows 10 1703 and newer, search the Settings app for Change User Account Control settings.
    2. SmartScreen is configured in Windows Defender Security Center > App & browser control.
  4. Run Windows Update. Do not skip this step. Many VDA installation problems are fixed by simply updating Windows.


    1. Defer Feature Updates – For Windows 10, since Citrix VDA does not immediately support new Windows 10 versions, configure Windows Update to defer feature updates.


  5. Add your Citrix Administrators group to the local Administrators group on the VDA. Computer Management.
  6. The Remote Desktop Services ‚ÄúPrompt for Password‚ÄĚ policy prevents Single Sign-on to the Virtual Delivery Agent. Check registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows NT\Terminal Services. If fPromptForPassword = 1 then you need to fix group policy. The following GPO setting will prevent Single Sign-on from working.
    Computer Configuration | Policies | Administrative Templates | Windows Components | Remote Desktop Services | Remote Desktop Session Host | Security | Always prompt for password upon connection
    Or set the registry value HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Portica\AutoLogon (DWORD) = 0x1. This registry value only applies to Desktop OS, not Server OS. (source = comments)
  7. To remove the built-in apps in Windows 10, see Robin Hobo How to remove built-in apps in Windows 10 Enterprise.
  8. For Remote Assistance in Citrix Director, configure the GPO setting Computer Configuration | Policies | Administrative Templates | System | Remote Assistance | Offer Remote Assistance. See Jason Samuel РHow to setup Citrix Director Shadowing with Remote Assistance using Group Policy for more details.
  9. If you intend to use Citrix’s SCOM Management Packs for XenApp/XenDesktop, make sure WinRM is enabled on the VDA by running¬†winrm quickconfig. Or you can enable WinRM using Group Policy.

Install Virtual Delivery Agent 1909 or 1906

  1. You can upgrade the VDA before you upgrade the Delivery Controllers. The VDA can be newer than the Delivery Controllers.
  2. For virtual desktops, make sure you are logged into the console. The VDA won’t install if you are connected using RDP.
  3. VDA will install .NET Framework 4.7.1 for you.

CLI Install:

Command Line Install Options are detailed at Install using the command line at Citrix Docs.

The Citrix Telemetry Service seems to cause problems. You can use the Command Line Installer to exclude Telemetry Service as detailed at VDA upgrade cmdlet at Citrix Discussions.

XenDesktopVDASetup.exe /quiet /noreboot /masterimage /Enable_HDX_PORTS /enable_framehawk_port /Enable_REAL_TIME_TRANSPORT /optimize /controllers "xdc01.corp.local xdc02.corp.local" /Exclude "Citrix Telemetry Service"

Citrix Blog Post Citrix VDA Commandline Helper Tool: a GUI to configure the VDA installation options.

Scripted Upgrade:

To automate the upgrade of VDA software on persistent machines, see David Ott Quickly Updating Persistent MCS VDAs at CUGC for a sample script.

GUI Install:

  1. Mount the downloaded Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 1909 ISO and and run AutoSelect.exe.

    • Alternatively, you can download the standalone VDA package and run that instead. Go the main Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 1909¬†download page. Expand the section labelled¬†Components that are on the product ISO but also packaged separately. There is also a VDA installer called¬†Desktop OS Core Services that is designed for Remote PC deployments.
  2. Click Start next to either Virtual Apps or Virtual Apps and Desktops. The only difference is the product name displayed in the installation wizard.
  3. On the top right, click Virtual Delivery Agent for Windows Desktop OS, or Windows Server OS depending on which type of VDA you are building.

  4. In the Environment page, select Create a master MCS Image or Create a master image using Citrix Provisioning, and click Next.

  5. In the Core Components page, if you don’t need Citrix Workspace App (formerly known as Receiver) installed on your VDA, then uncheck the box. Workspace app is usually only needed for double-hop ICA connections (connect to first VDA, and then from there, connect to second VDA). Click Next.
  6. In the Additional Components page, uncheck Citrix AppDisk/Personal vDisk. This feature has been deprecated and has been replaced by Citrix App Layering. If you are installing VDA on Windows 10 1709 or newer, then it is critical that you uncheck this.
    • There’s an option for Citrix Files for Windows, which installs an agent that can display files from Citrix Content Collaboration (aka ShareFile). See¬†CTX228273¬†Install and Use Citrix Files for Windows.
  7. Click Next.
  8. In the Delivery Controller page, select Do it manually. Enter the FQDN of each Delivery Controller. Click Test connection. And then make sure you click Add. Click Next when done.
  9. In the Features page, only the top box is checked by default. If you want to use the other features, check the boxes.
    • There’s an option for MCS IO, which is the driver for MCS Memory Read Caching (aka Storage Optimization). In VDA 1903 and newer, the MCS IO driver is now the exact same driver as the driver used in Citrix Provisioning. If you want the MCSIO feature, then VDA 1903 and newer are strongly recommended since they don’t have the same performance problems as 1811 and older (including 7.15).
    • Framehawk has been deprecated from VDA 1811, and removed from VDA 1903.
  10. Then click Next.
  11. In the Firewall page, click Next.
  12. In the Summary page, click Install.

  13. If your VDA is RDSH (Server OS), then click Close when you are prompted to restart.
  14. After the machine reboots twice, login and installation should continue.
    1. If you see a¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media window, don’t click anything.
    2. Mount the Citrix_Virtual_Apps_and_Desktops_7_1909.iso.
    3. Go back to the¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media¬†window. On the left, expand This PC, and click the DVD Drive. Then click Select Folder.
    4. Repeat these instructions every time you’re prompted to restart.
  15. Installation will continue automatically.
  16. Note: NT SERVICE\CitrixTelemetryService needs permission to login as a service.
  17. In the Diagnostics page, you can optionally check the box next to Collect diagnostic information, click Connect, enter your Citrix account credentials, and then click Next.

  18. In the Finish page, click Finish to restart the machine again.

  19. From CTX225819 When Launching an Application Published from Windows Server 2016, a Black Screen Appears for Several Seconds Before Application is Visible
    • HKLM\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Citrix Virtual Desktop Agent\DisableLogonUISuppression (DWORD) should be set to 0.

User Session Disconnect Hotfix

This section only applies to the original VDA 1906. The VDA installer on the 1906.2 respin ISO already includes this hotfix so you can skip this section.

  1. Download the hotfix from CTX257566 User Session Disconnect Hotfix – For Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 1906.1 VDA ‚Äď English.
  2. Extract the .zip file.
  3. Open the readme.txt file and follow the instructions to install the file.



Microsoft FSLogix

If you need to roam the user’s Outlook .OST file (Outlook Cached Mode), Outlook Search Index, OneDrive cache, OneNote data, SharePoint data, Skype data, and/or Teams data, then download, install, and configure Microsoft FSLogix. FSLogix has more Office roaming features than Citrix Profile Management. A common architecture is to enable FSLogix Office Container for the Office cache files and use Citrix Profile Management for all other roaming profile files and registry keys.

Microsoft FSLogix is free for all Microsoft RDS CALs, Microsoft Virtual Desktop Access per-user CALs, and all Microsoft Enterprise E3/E5 per-user licenses. Notice that per-device licenses are excluded.

G0-EUC tested FSLogix Profile Container (not Office Container) and found that it reduces capacity by 27%. (source = The impact of managing user profiles with FSLogix) ūüí°

Do the following to install Microsoft FSLogix on the VDA machine:

  1. Go to https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/fslogix/install-ht and click the download link.
  2. Extract the downloaded .zip file.
  3. In the FSLogix \x64\Release folder, run FSLogixAppsSetup.exe.
  4. Check the box next to I agree to the license terms and conditions and click Install.
  5. In the Setup Successful page, click Restart.

FSLogix is configured through Group Policy or by editing registry values on each FSLogix Agent machine. Here is some info on group policy configuration:

  1. The FSLogix .zip file contains fslogix.admx and fslogix.adml files for configuration of FSLogix through Group Policy. Copy these files to your PolicyDefinitions folder.

  2. Find the settings in Group Policy Editor at Computer Configuration | Policies | Administrative Templates | FSLogix | Office 365 Containers. The Office 365 Containers node controls Office 365 Containers only. The Profile Containers node lets you configure the entire profile and not just Office 365. You can also configure both as detailed at FAQ: How to use Office 365 Containers and Profile Containers together.
  3. You’ll need a file share with appropriate permissions to store the Office containers.
  4. Set Virtual disk type to VHDX.
  5. The .vhdx files are thin provisioned and can grow up to the maximum Size in MBs, which defaults to 30 GB. It’s difficult to change this value later, so make sure it’s large enough for your Office users.
  6. Under Container and Directory Naming enable the setting Swap directory name components.
  7. Back in the Office 365 Containers node, review each of the Include settings and enable whichever data you want to include in the Office Container. More details at Configure Office Container at Microsoft Docs.
  8. Enable Store search database in Office 365 container.
    1. If RDSH VDAs, then select¬†Multi-user search. If Virtual Desktop VDAs, then select¬†Single-user search. This means you’ll probably need different FSLogix GPOs for Multi-user VDAs vs Single-user VDAs.
    2. In Group Policy Editor, move up to the¬†FSLogix node. On the right, enable the setting¬†Enable search roaming and set it to¬†Multi-user or¬†Single-user. You have to enable two different Search Roaming settings. See¬†FSLogix Containers ‚Äď Search Index Considerations and Troubleshooting.

    3. Make sure the Windows Search service is set to Automatic and Running.
    4. If Office is already installed, then repair the Office installation after installing and starting the Windows Search Service.
  9. Back in the Office 365 Containers node, enable the Enabled setting.

Other FSLogix Configurations and Links

Full Profile Container (not just Office): ūüí°

Citrix Workspace app 1909

If you want to run Workspace app on the VDA machine, then upgrade it to Workspace app 1909.

VDA 1909 includes Workspace app 1907, which you should upgrade to Workspace app 1909.

VDA 1906 includes Workspace app 1905, which you should upgrade to Workspace app 1909.

  1. Download Workspace app 1909.
  2. On the VDA, as administrator, run the downloaded CitrixWorkspaceApp.exe.
  3. In the Welcome to Citrix Workspace page, click Start.
  4. In the License Agreement page, check the box next to I accept the license agreement, and click Next.
  5. In the Enable Single Sign-on page, check the box next to Enable single sign-on, and click Install.
  6. In the Installation successful page, click Finish.
  7. Click Yes when asked to restart now.
  8. Apps and Features or Programs and Features shows Citrix Workspace 1909 with version 19.9.0.21.

Citrix Desktop Service

To prevent Citrix Desktop Service (BrokerAgent) from starting and registering with the Delivery Controllers before the boot process is complete, see Jeremy Saunders Controlling the Starting of the Citrix Desktop Service (BrokerAgent).

Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP)

Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP) is enabled by default. To disable it, create the registry value HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Telemetry\CEIP\Enabled (DWORD), and set it to 0 (zero). Also see CEIP at Citrix Insight Services at Citrix Docs.

See https://www.carlstalhood.com/delivery-controller-cr-and-licensing/#ceip for additional places where CEIP is enabled.

Connection Quality Indicator

The Connection Quality Indicator tells the user the quality of the connection. Position of the indicator is configurable by the user. Thresholds are configurable through group policy.

Download it from CTX220774 Connection Quality Indicator and install it. The article is very detailed.

Group Policy templates are located at C:\Program Files (x86)\Citrix\Connection Quality Indicator\Configuration. Copy the files and folder to <Sysvol>\Policies\PolicyDefinitions, or C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions.

Find the settings under Computer Config | Policies | Administrative Templates | Citrix Components | Virtual Desktop Agent | CQI

Version 1.2 adds the GPO settings to the user half of a GPO, which lets you disable CQI for some users and enable it for others.

Notification display settings lets you customize the user notifications, or disable them.

Connection Threshold Settings lets you set the notification thresholds.

Adaptive Transport

Adaptive Transport is a HDX/ICA protocol feature that tries to use UDP ports (EDT protocol) if they are open, and falls back to TCP ICA if UDP connection is not successful. On higher latency connections, EDT (UDP) tends to perform better than traditional TCP ICA.

The Citrix Policy setting HDX Adaptive Transport defaults to Preferred, which means Adaptive Transport is enabled by default.

The newer Citrix EDT protocol use¬†UDP Ports 1494/2598 for¬†HDX connections to¬†the VDA. The UDP ports should already be open in the VDA’s Windows Firewall. In other words, HDX/ICA uses both TCP and UDP ports.

For EDT (and Adaptive Transport) through NetScaler Gateway, make sure your NetScaler firmware is up to date, preferably 11.1 build 56 or newer. Then make sure DTLS is enabled on the Gateway Virtual Server. DTLS is the UDP version of SSL/TLS.

Slow Logons

Citrix Discussions¬†Xenapp 7.9: Wait for local session manager: “I have a Xenapp 7.9 environment on Windows 2012 R2. When logging in through Citrix I got message “Wait for local session manager” for 20-30 seconds. When logging in to the server with RDS, I do not have to wait for this.”

“Add the following 2 registry keys to your VDA server – then try connecting to it using ICA to see if the issue still occurs:

Add reg keys in “HKLM\SOFTWARE\Citrix\GroupPolicy”
Dword: “CacheGpoExpireInHours” – Value = 5-24 (# of Hours) ***start with value of 5***
Dword: “GpoCacheEnabled” – Value = 1

Restart the machine after adding these registry keys and attempt an ICA connection (at least twice) to see if that helps the Login delay.”

 

Marvin Neys at XenApp slow logon times, user get black screen for 20 seconds at Citrix Discussions says that deleting HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\UFH\SHC at logoff reduces logon times from 40 seconds to 6 seconds.

Remove-Item HKCU:\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\UFH\SHC

 

For additional logon delay troubleshooting, see¬†Alexander Ollischer¬†XenApp/XenDesktop ‚Äď ‚ÄúPlease Wait For Local Session Manager‚ÄĚ message when logging into RDS. He found some Windows Updates that caused a logon delay.

 

VDA recalculates WMI filters on every reconnect. CTX212610 Session Reconnect 30 sec Delay РDisableGPCalculation РWMI Filters indicates that recalculation can be disabled by setting HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Reconnect\DisableGPCalculation (DWORD) to 1. Note: this registry value might stop Citrix Policies from being re-evaluated when users reconnect (source = Citrix Discussions).

Controller Registration Port

Some environments will not accept the default port 80 for Virtual Delivery Agent registration, even though registration is authenticated and encrypted on port 80. To change the port, do the following on the Virtual Delivery Agent:

  1. Open Programs and Features. If Windows 10 1703 or newer, or Windows Server 2019, then open Apps and Features.
  2. Find Citrix Virtual Delivery Agent 1909.1 , and click Change or Modify (Windows 10 1703 and newer, or Windows Server 2019).
  3. Click Customize Virtual Delivery Agent Settings.
  4. Edit the Delivery Controllers, and click Next.
  5. On the Protocol and Port page, change the port number, and click Next.
  6. In the Summary page, click Reconfigure.
  7. If you see a Smart Tools page, make a selection for Call Home, and click Next.
  8. In the Finish Reconfiguration page, click Finish.
  9. Restart the VDA machine.
  10. You must also change the VDA registration port on the Delivery Controllers by running C:\Program Files\Citrix\Broker\Service\BrokerService.exe -VDAPort
  11. For Local Host Cache, on the Delivery Controller, run¬†C:\Program Files\Citrix\Broker\Service\HighAvailabilityService.exe ‚ÄďVdaPort <CORRECT PORT #>. (Source = CTX229493 VDAs Do Not Register in LHC Mode When Registration Port is Not Set To Default)

Verify that VDA registered with a Controller

  1. If you restart the Virtual Delivery Agent machine, or restart the Citrix Desktop Service
  2. In Windows Logs > Application log, you should see an event 1012 from Citrix Desktop Service saying that it successfully registered with a controller.
  3. If you don’t see successful registration, then you’ll need to fix the ListOfDDCs¬†registry key.
    1. See VDA registration with Controllers at Citrix Docs.
    2. See The Most Common VDA Registration Issues & Troubleshooting Steps at Citrix Blogs.
  4. You can also¬†run Citrix’s Health Assistant on the VDA.

  5. See CTX220772 Technical Primer: VDA Registration for a very detailed explanation of the VDA Registration process.

Citrix PDF Printer  for Receiver for HTML5/Chrome

  1. VDA 1906 and VDA 1903 install the PDF Printer automatically so there’s no need for a separate installation.
  2. To enable the PDF printer for HTML5 connections, configure the Citrix Policy setting called Auto-create PDF Universal Printer in the user half of a Citrix Policy GPO.

Citrix File Access 2.0.3 for Receiver for Chrome

  1. If you support Receiver for Chrome (Chromebook) and want published applicatons to open files on Google Drive, install Citrix File Access on the VDAs. Get it from the Receiver for Chrome download page, in the Additional Components section.
  2. Go to the extracted Citrix_File_Access_2.0.3, and run FileAccess.msi.
  3. In the Please read the File Access License Agreement page, check the box next to I accept the terms, and click Install.
  4. In the Completed the File Access Setup Wizard page, click Finish.
  5. File Access is listed in Apps & Features or Programs and Features as version 2.0.3.33.

  6. File Access has a default list of supported file extensions. The list can be expanded by editing the registry on the VDA. See CTX219983 Receiver for Chrome Error: Invalid command line arguments: Unable to open the file as it has an unsupported extension.
  7. To open a file from Google Drive, right-click and and open the file using Citrix Receiver.

Remote Desktop Licensing Configuration

On 2012 R2 and newer RDSH, the only way to configure Remote Desktop Licensing is using group policy (local or domain). This procedure is not needed on virtual desktops.

  1. For local group policy, run gpedit.msc. Alternatively, you can configure this in a domain GPO.
  2. Go to Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Remote Desktop Services > Remote Desktop Session Host > Licensing.
  3. Double-click Use the specified Remote Desktop license servers. Change it to Enabled, and enter the names of the RDS Licensing Servers (typically installed on Delivery Controllers). Click OK.
  4. Double-click Set the Remote Desktop licensing mode. Change it to Enabled and select Per User. Click OK.
  5. Optionally, you can install the Remote Desktop Licensing Diagnoser Tool. In the Server Manager > Add Roles and Features Wizard, on the Features page, expand Remote Server Administration Tools, expand Role Administration Tools, expand Remote Desktop Services Tools, and select Remote Desktop Licensing Diagnoser Tool. Then Finish the wizard.
  6. If it won’t install from Server Manager, you can install it from PowerShell by running¬†Install-WindowsFeature rsat-rds-licensing-diagnosis-ui.
  7. In Server Manager, open the Tools menu, expand Remote Desktop Services (or Terminal Services), and click Remote Desktop Licensing Diagnoser.

  8. The Diagnoser should find the license server, and indicate the licensing mode. If you’re configured for Per User licenses, then it‚Äôs OK if there are no licenses installed on the Remote Desktop License Server.

Several people in Citrix Discussions reported the following issue: If you see a message about RD Licensing Grace Period has expired even though RD Licensing is properly configured, see Eric Verdumen No remote Desktop Licence Server availible on RD Session Host server 2012. The solution was to delete the REG_BINARY in HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Terminal Server\RCM\GracePeriod only leaving the default. You must take ownership and give admin users full control to be able to delete this value.

C: Drive Permissions

This section is more important for shared VDAs like RDSH (Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2019).

The default permissions allow users to store files on the C: drive in places other than their profile.

  1. Open the Properties dialog box for C:.
  2. On the Security tab, click Advanced.
  3. If UAC is enabled, click Change permissions.
  4. Highlight the line containing Users and Create Folders, and click Remove.
  5. Highlight the line containing Users and Create files (or Special), and click Remove. Click OK.
  6. Click Yes to confirm the permissions change.
  7. If you see any of these Error Applying Security windows, click Continue. This window should appear multiple times.
  8. Click OK to close the C: drive properties.

Pagefile

If this image will be converted to a Provisioning Services vDisk, then you must ensure the pagefile is smaller than the cache disk. For example, if you allocate 20 GB of RAM to your Remote Desktop Session Host, and if the cache disk is only 15 GB, then Windows will have a default pagefile size of 20 GB, and Provisioning Services will be unable to move it to the cache disk. This causes Provisioning Services to cache to server instead of caching to your local cache disk (or RAM).

  1. Open System. In 2012 R2 and newer, you can right-click the Start button, and click System. Note: in Windows 10 1703 and newer, this method no longer opens the correct tool.
  2. Another option is to open File Explorer, right-click This PC, and click Properties. This works in Windows 10 1703.
  3. Click Advanced system settings.
  4. On the Advanced tab, click the top Settings button.
  5. On the Advanced tab, click Change.
  6. Uncheck the box next to Automatically manage paging file size for all drives. Then either turn off the pagefile, or set the pagefile to be smaller than the cache disk. Don’t leave it set to System managed size. Click OK several times.

Direct Access Users

When Citrix Virtual Delivery Agent is installed on a machine, non-administrators can no longer RDP to the machine. A new local group called Direct Access Users is created on each Virtual Delivery Agent. Add your non-administrator RDP users to this local group so they can RDP directly to the machine.

From CTX228128 What is the HKLM\Software\Citrix\PortICA\DirectAccessUsers registry function: The HKLM\Software\Citrix\PortICA\DirectAccessUsers registry key determines which Local group the VDA references to determine if a user should be allowed Unbrokered RDP access. Members of the Local Administrators group will always be granted access. If the Registry Key does not exist, or gets deleted, VDA will always allow the Unbrokered RDP Connection. The Registry key and local group are created as part of the VDA installation process.

Windows Profiles v3/v4/v5/v6

Roaming Profiles are compatible only between the following client and server operating system pairs. The profile version is also listed.

  • v6 = Windows 10 (1607 through 1903), Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2019
  • v5 = Windows 10 (1511 and older)
  • v4 = Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2
  • v3 = Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012
  • v2 = Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2
  • v2 = Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008

For Windows 2012 R2, install Microsoft hotfix 2890783, and set the UseProfilePathExtensionVersion registry value to 1.

CTX230343 Reset Profile Options Is Greyed Out In Citrix Director states that the UseProfilePathExtensionVersion registry value is required on Windows 2012 R2 to enable Director users to reset profiles.

Registry

Windows Server 2019 Reconnect Issue

Users might have reconnect issues when the session idle timer times out and transitions to disconnect state. Workaround is the following registry value: (source = Windows Server 2019, Citrix VDA and the Broken, Not-so-Fast Reconnect at CUGC) ūüí°

  • Key = HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Reconnect
    • Value (DWORD) = FastReconnect = 0

Black Screen when launch Published Apps on Windows Server 2016

From CTX225819 When Launching an Application Published from Windows Server 2016, a Black Screen Appears for Several Seconds Before Application is Visible: Citrix and Microsoft have worked together together to deliver code fixes for both Windows Server 2016 and Citrix Virtual Apps. Microsoft is targeting their KB4034661 patch for the third week of August 2017. This fix requires a registry edit to enable.

  • Key = HKLM\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Citrix Virtual Desktop Agent
    • Value (DWORD) = DisableLogonUISuppression = 0

Published Explorer

From Citrix CTX128009 Explorer.exe Fails to Launch: When publishing the seamless explorer.exe application, the session initially begins to connect as expected. After the loading, the dialog box disappears, and the Explorer application fails to appear. On the VDA, use the following registry change to set the length of time a client session waits before disconnecting the session:

  • Key = HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Citrix\wfshell\TWI
    • Value¬†(DWORD) = LogoffCheckerStartupDelayInSeconds¬†= 10 (Hexadecimal)

Screen Saver

From Citrix CTX205214 Screensaver Not Working in XenDesktop: By default, Screen Saver doesn’t work on Desktop OS. To enable it, on the VDA, configure the following registry value:

  • Key =¬†HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\Graphics
    • Value (DWORD) =¬†SetDisplayRequiredMode = 0

Smart Cards

From¬†CTX231942¬†Windows 10 April 2018 Update (v1803) ‚Äď Citrix Known Issues –¬†Smart Card Service (SCardSvr) will run only if a Smart Card reader is connected. As ICA sessions redirect the Smart Card, it finds the service not to be running and fails.

  • Key =¬†HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\WOW6432Node\Microsoft\Cryptography\Calais
    • Value (DWORD) =¬†AllowServiceAccessWithNoReaders¬†= 1

Logon Disclaimer Window Size

From XenApp 7.8 РSession Launch Security/Warning Login Banner at Citrix Discussions: If your logon disclaimer window has scroll bars, set the following registry values:

  • Key = HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Wow6432node\Citrix\CtxHook\AppInit_DLLS\Multiple Monitor Hook
    • Value (DWORD) = LogonUIWidth¬†= 300
    • Value (DWORD) = LogonUIHeight¬†= 200

Login Timeout

From Citrix CTX203760 VDI Session Launches Then Disappears: VDA, by default, only allows 180 seconds to complete a logon operation. The timeout can be increased by setting the following:

  • Key = HKLM\SOFTWARE\Citrix\PortICA
    • Value (DWORD) = AutoLogonTimeout¬†= decimal 240 or higher (up to 3599).

Also see Citrix Discussions Machines in “Registered” State, but VM closes after “Welcome” screen.

From Citrix CTX138404 Application Connection Starts but Disappears after Timeout: after loading the application, the dialog box disappears and the application fails to appear.

  • ¬†Key =¬†HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Citrix\wfshell\TWI
    • Value (DWORD) =ApplicationLaunchWaitTimeoutMS¬†= decimal 60000

Receiver for HTML5/Chrome Enhanced Clipboard

From About Citrix Receiver for Chrome 1.9 at Citrix Docs: To enable enhanced clipboard support, create a REG_SZ registry value HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Citrix\wfshell\Virtual Clipboard\Additional Formats\HTML Format\Name=”HTML Format”. Create any missing registry keys. This applies to both virtual desktops and Remote Desktop Session Hosts.

Receiver for HTML5/Chrome Upload Folder

The Receiver for HTML5 (or Chrome) lets upload files.

By default, the user is prompted to select a upload location. If you use the Upload feature multiple times, the last selected folder is not remembered.

Citrix CTX217351 How to Customize File Upload and Download Using Receiver for HTML5 and Receiver for Chrome. You can specify a default uploads location by editing HKLM\Software\Citrix\FileTransfer\UploadFolderLocation on the VDA. Environment variables are supported. When this value is configured, users are no longer prompted to select an upload location. The change takes effect at next logon.

Note: HTML5/Chrome Receiver also adds a Save to My Device location to facilitate downloads.

4K Monitors

From Citrix Knowledgebase article CTX218217 Unable to span across multiple monitors after upgrade to 7.11 VDA, Black/Blank screen appears on the monitors while connecting to ICA session:

  1. Calculate the video memory that is required for monitors using the following formula:
    SumOfAllMons (Width * Height) * 4 / 0.3, where width and height are resolution of the monitor. Note: There is no hard and fast rule that will work for all cases.
    Example: Consider the resolution of monitor 1 is 1920*1200 and monitor 2 is 1366*768. Then SumOfAllMons will be (1920*1200 + 1366*768)
  2. CTX115637 Citrix Session Graphics Memory Reference describes how multi-monitor resolution is determined.
  3. Open the registry (regedit) and navigate to: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\vbdenum
  4. Increase the value of “MaxVideoMemoryBytes”¬†REG_DWORD value to the above calculated memory.
  5. Reboot the VDA.

Citrix Policies also control graphics performance.

COM Port Threads

CTX212090¬†COM Port Intermittently Inaccessible During ICA Sessions:¬†increase the default value of “MaxThreads” under the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\picaser\Parameters from 20 to a value greater than the number of COM port connections you want to support.¬†For example, if a VDA server supports 100 sessions and each session opens two COM ports, the value of “MaxThreads” should be greater than 200.

NVIDIA GRID License

Allow NVIDIA GRID License to apply after the session is started. (Source =¬†Jan Hendrik Meier¬†NVIDIA GRID license not applied before the user connects ‚Äď License Restriction will not be removed until the user reconnects)

  • Key =¬†HKLM\SOFTWARE\NVIDIA Corporation\Global\GridLicensing
    • Value (DWORD) =¬†IgnoreSP¬†= 1

Legacy Client Drive Mapping

Citrix CTX127968 How to Enable Legacy Client Drive Mapping Format on XenApp: Citrix Client Drive Mapping no longer uses drive letters and instead they appear as local disks. This is similar to RDP drive mapping.

The old drive letter method can be enabled by setting the registry value:

  • Key = HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\UncLinks (create the key)
    • Value (DWORD) = UNCEnabled¬†= 0

When you reconnect, the client drives will be mapped as drive letters (starts with V: and goes backwards).

Print Driver for Non-Windows Clients

From CTX140208 Client printing from Mac and Linux clients on Windows 10, Server 2012 R2, and Server 2016. By default, Non-Windows clients cannot map printers due to a missing print driver on the VDA machine.

  1. Requirements:
    • Internet Access
    • Windows Update service enabled
  2. In Windows 10 1803+, open Printers & scanners. On the right (or scroll down) is a link to Print Server Properties.
  3. In older versions of Windows, you can get to Print server properties from Devices and Printers.
    1. In Windows prior to Windows 10 1703, click Start, and run Devices and Printers.
    2. In Windows 10 1703, open Printers & scanners, then scroll down, and click Devices and printers.

    3. In the Printers section, highlight a local printer (e.g. Microsoft XPS Document Writer). Then in the toolbar, click Print server properties.
  4. Switch to the Drivers tab and click Change Driver Settings.
  5. Then click Add.
  6. In the Welcome to the Add Printer Driver Wizard page, click Next.
  7. In the Processor Selection page, click Next.
  8. In the Printer Driver Selection page, click Windows Update. The driver we need won’t be in the list until you click this button. Internet access is required.
  9. Once Windows Update is complete, highlight HP on the left, and then select HP Color LaserJet 2800 Series PS (Microsoft) on the right. Click Next.
  10. In the Completing the Add Printer Driver Wizard page, click Finish.

SSL for VDA

If you intend to use HTML5 Receiver internally, install certificates on the VDAs so the WebSockets (and ICA) connection will be encrypted. Internal HTML5 Receivers will not accept clear text WebSockets. External users don’t have this problem since they are SSL-proxied through NetScaler Gateway.

Notes:

  • Each Virtual Delivery Agent needs a machine certificate that matches the machine name. This is feasible for a small number of persistent VDAs. For non-persistent VDAs, you‚Äôll need some automatic means for creating machine certificates every time they reboot.
  • As detailed in the following procedure, use PowerShell on the Controller to enable SSL for the Delivery Group. This forces SSL for every VDA in the Delivery Group, which means every VDA in the Delivery Group must have SSL certificates installed.

The following instructions for manually enabling SSL on VDA can be found at Configure TLS on a VDA using the PowerShell script at Citrix Docs.

  1. On the VDA machine, run certlm.msc.
  2. Right-click Personal, expand All Tasks, and click Request New Certificate to request a certificate from your internal Certificate Authority. You can use either the Computer template or the Web Server template.

    • You can also use group policy to enable Certificate Auto-Enrollment for the VDA computers.
  3. Browse to the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops ISO. In the Support\Tools\SslSupport folder, shift+right-click the Enable-VdaSSL.ps1 script, and click Copy as path.
  4. Run PowerShell as administrator (elevated).
  5. Run the command Set-ExecutionPolicy unrestricted. Enter Y to approve.
  6. In the PowerShell prompt, type in an ampersand (&), and a space.
  7. Right-click the PowerShell prompt to paste in the path copied earlier.
  8. At the end of the path, type in -Enable
  9. If there’s only one certificate on this machine, press Enter.
  10. If there are multiple certificates, then you’ll need to specify the thumbprint of the certificate you want to use. Open the Certificates snap-in, open the properties of the machine certificate you want to use, and copy the Thumbprint from the Details tab.

    In the PowerShell prompt, at the end of the command, enter ‚ÄĎCertificateThumbPrint, add a space, and type quotes (").
    Right-click the PowerShell prompt to paste the thumbprint.
    Type quotes (") at the end of the thumbprint. Then remove all spaces from the thumbprint. The thumbprint needs to be wrapped in quotes.
  11. There are additional switches to specify minimum SSL Version and Cipher Suites. Also see Citrix CTX226049 Disabling Triple DES on the VDA breaks the VDA SSL connection.
  12. Press <Enter> to run the Enable-VdaSSL.ps1 script.
  13. Press <Y> twice to configure the ACLs and Firewall.
  14. You might have to reboot before the settings take effect.
  15. Login to a Controller, and run PowerShell as Administrator (elevated).
  16. Run the command asnp Citrix.*
  17. Enter the command:
    Get-BrokerAccessPolicyRule -DesktopGroupName '<delivery-group-name>' | Set-BrokerAccessPolicyRule ‚ÄĎHdxSslEnabled $true

    where <delivery-group-name> is the name of the Delivery Group containing the VDAs.

  18. You can run Get-BrokerAccessPolicyRule -DesktopGroupName '<delivery-group-name>' to verify that HDX SSL is enabled.
  19. Also run the following command to enable DNS resolution.
    Set-BrokerSite ‚ÄďDnsResolutionEnabled $true

  20. Since the UDP-based EDT protocol is enabled by default, open port UDP 443 to the VDAs.

You should now be able to connect to the VDA using the HTML5 Receiver from internal machines.

The Citrix blog post How To Secure ICA Connections in XenApp and XenDesktop 7.6 using SSL has a method for automatically provisioning certificates for pooled virtual desktops by enabling certificate auto-enrollment and setting up a task that runs after the certificate has been enrolled.

  • From¬†Russ Hargrove at¬†A note on VDA certificates in 7.14 at Citrix Discussions:¬†Citrix installs a new “Citrix XenApp/XenDesktop HDX Service” certificate in the Personal store which breaks the automation of the Enable-VdaSSL.ps1 script. To fix the problem, modify the task scheduler powershell script to:
    Enable-VdaSSL.ps1 -Enable -CertificateThumbPrint (Get-ChildItem -path cert:\LocalMachine\My | Where-Object -FilterScript {$_.Subject -eq ""} | Select-Object -ExpandProperty Thumbprint) -Confirm:$False
  • For certificate auto-enrollment on non-persistent Remote Desktop Session Hosts (aka Server OS VDAs), see¬†Non-Persistent Server SSL to VDA by Alfredo Magallon Arbizu at CUGC.

Anonymous Accounts

If you intend to publish apps anonymously then follow this section.

  1. Anonymous accounts are created locally on the VDAs. When VDA creates Anon accounts, it gives them an idle time as specified at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Citrix\AnonymousUserIdleTime. The default is 10 minutes. Adjust as desired.
  2. Pre-create the Anon accounts on the VDA by running "C:\Program Files\Citrix\ICAConfigTool\CreateAnonymousUsersApp.exe". If you don‚Äôt run this tool, then anonymous users can’t login.
  3. You can see the local Anon accounts by opening Computer Management, expanding System Tools, expanding Local Users and Groups and clicking Users.
  4. If you want profiles for anonymous users to delete at logoff, then you’ll need to add the local Anon users to the local Guests group.
  5. If you open one of the accounts, on the Sessions tab, notice that idle timeout defaults to 10 minutes. Feel free to change it.

Group Policy for Anonymous Users

Since Anonymous users are local accounts on each Virtual Delivery Agent, domain-based GPOs will not apply. To work around this limitation, you’ll need to edit the local group policy on each Virtual Delivery Agent.

  1. On the Virtual Delivery Agent, run mmc.exe.
  2. Open the File menu, and click Add/Remove Snap-in.
  3. Highlight Group Policy Object Editor, and click Add to move it to the right.
  4. In the Welcome to the Group Policy Wizard page, click Browse.
  5. On the Users tab, select Non-Administrators.
  6. Click Finish.
  7. Now you can configure group policy to lockdown sessions for anonymous users. Since this is a local group policy, you’ll need to repeat the group policy configuration on every Virtual Delivery Agent image. Also, Group Policy Preferences is not available in local group policy.

Antivirus

Install antivirus using your normal procedure. Instructions vary for each Antivirus product.

Microsoft’s virus scanning recommendations (e.g. exclude group policy files) Рhttp://support.microsoft.com/kb/822158.

Citrix’s Recommended Antivirus Exclusions

Citrix Tech Zone Endpoint Security and Antivirus Best Practices: provides guidelines for configuring antivirus software in Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops environments.

Citrix Blog Post Citrix Recommended Antivirus Exclusions: the goal here is to provide you with a consolidated list of recommended antivirus exclusions for your Citrix virtualization environment focused on the key processes, folders, and files that we have seen cause issues in the field:

  • Set real-time scanning to scan local drives only and not network drives
  • Disable scan on boot
  • Remove any unnecessary antivirus related entries from the Run key
  • Exclude the pagefile(s) from being scanned
  • Exclude Windows event logs from being scanned
  • Exclude IIS log files from being scanned

See the Blog Post for exclusions for each Citrix component/product including: StoreFront, VDA, Controller, and Provisioning Services. The Blog Post also has links to additional KB articles on antivirus.

Symantec

Symantec links:

Trend Micro

Trend Micro Slow login on Citrix environment after installing OfficeScan (OSCE): The following registries can be used to troubleshoot the issue. These registries will allow a delay on the startup procedure of OSCE until the system has launched successfully. This avoids deadlock situations during login.

Citrix¬†CTX136680 –¬†Slow Server Performance After Trend Micro Installation. Citrix session hosts experience slow response and performance more noticeable while users try to log in to the servers. At some point the performance of the servers is affected, resulting in issues with users logging on and requiring the server to be restarted. This issue is more noticeable on mid to large session host infrastructures.

Trend Micro has provided a registry fix for this type of issue. Create the following registry on all the affected servers. Add new DWORD Value as:

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\TmFilterParameters] “DisableCtProcCheck”=dword:00000001

Trend Micro Links:

Sophos

Sophos Endpoint Security and Control: Best Practice for running Sophos on virtual systems:¬†we’ve amassed the following practical information about how you can optimize our software to work with this technology.

Sophos Endpoint Security and Control: Installation and configuration considerations for Sophos Anti-Virus on a Remote Desktop Services server: It maybe desirable to disable the Sophos AutoUpdate shield icon

Sophos Endpoint Security and Control: How to include current version of Sophos in a disk image for cloned virtual machines: This procedure will make sure that the produced target/cloned computers:

  • Get their distinct identity with Enterprise Console, under which they can be subsequently managed.
  • Have the desired version of Sophos Anti-Virus already installed and configured on the created image.

Palo Alto Traps

  • Install Traps Agent for Windows:
    • Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) installation‚ÄĒIntended for non-persistent endpoints that replicate (also referred to as spawn) from a golden image which has Traps installed.
    • Temporary session‚ÄĒIntended for either physical or virtual endpoints (such as a Remote Desktop Server) that repeatedly revert to a snapshot (or image) on which Traps is not installed.

Windows Defender Antivirus

Deployment guide for Windows Defender Antivirus in a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) environment

Cylance

CTX232722 Unable to launch application with Cylance Memory Protection Enabled. Cylance must be run in compatibility mode in order to the VDA and Cylance to run on the same machine. See the article for detailed instructions.

Optimize Performance

VDA Optimizer

Installation of the VDA might have already done this, but there’s no harm in doing it again. This tool is only available if you installed VDA in Master Image mode.

  1. On the master VDA, go to C:\Program Files\Citrix\PvsVm\TargetOSOptimizer, and run TargetOSOptimizer.exe.
  2. Then click OK. Notice that it disables Windows Update.
  3. See CTX125874 How to Optimize XenDesktop Machines for the list of registry values changed by the TargetOSOptimizer tool. You can use Group Policy Preferences to set these values.

Windows 10 / Windows 2012 R2 / Windows 2016 / Windows 2019 and newer

Download Citrix Optimizer and run it.

VMware OS Optimization Tool.

Citrix Daniel Feller links:

James Rankin Improving Windows 10 logon time:

David Wilkinson links:

Citrix Links:

Microsoft links:

Optimization Notes:

Seal and Shut Down

If this VDA will be a master image in a Machine Creation Services or Citrix Provisioning catalog, after the master is fully prepared (including applications), do the following:

  1. Go to the properties of the C: drive, and run Disk Cleanup.
  2. If Disk Cleanup is missing, you can run cleanmgr.exe instead.
  3. Windows 10 1703 and newer has a new method for cleaning up temporary files.
    1. Right-click the Start button, and click System.
    2. Click Storage on the left, and click This PC (C:) on the right.
    3. Click Temporary Files.
    4. Check boxes, and click Remove files.
  4. On the Tools tab, click Optimize to defrag the drive.
    `
  5. Run slmgr.vbs /dlv and make sure it is licensed with KMS and has at least one rearm remaining. It is not necessary to manually rearm licensing since MCS will do it automatically.
  6. Run Delprof2 to clean up local profiles. Get it from http://helgeklein.com/download/.
  7. Machine Creation Services and Provisioning Services require DHCP.
  8. Session hosts (RDSH) commonly have DHCP reservations.
  9. Base Image Script Framework (BIS-F) automates many sealing tasks. The script is configurable using Group Policy.
  10. Shut down the master image. You can now use Studio (Machine Creation Services) or Provisioning Services to create a catalog of linked clones.

Troubleshooting – Graphics

For Citrix Policies that control graphics codecs, see https://www.carlstalhood.com/citrix-policy-settings/#graphics

Citrix Blog post – Optimising the performance of HDX 3D Pro ‚Äď Lessons from the field

From Citrix Discussions: To exclude applications from Citrix 3D rendering, create a REG_DWORD registry value ‚Äúapp.exe‚ÄĚ with value 0 or a registry value ‚Äú*‚ÄĚ with value 0.

  • Both x86 and x64:
    • reg add hklm\software\citrix\vd3d\compatibility /v * /t REG_DWORD /f /d 0

Wildcards are not supported. The asterisk * here has a special meaning ‚Äúall apps‚ÄĚ but is not a traditional wildcard. To blacklist multiple apps e.g. both appa.exe and appb.exe must be done by creating a registry value for each app individually.

This is most problematic in Remote PC since most physical PCs have GPUs. I recently had to blacklist Internet Explorer to prevent lockup issues when switching back to physical.

Uninstall VDA

Uninstall the VDA from Apps & Features or Programs and Features.

Then see CTX209255 VDA Cleanup Utility.

To run the VDA Cleanup Tool silently:

  1. Execute VDACleanupUtility.exe /silent /noreboot to suppress reboot.
  2. Once the VDACleanupUtility has finished executing, setup Auto logon for the current user.
  3. Reboot.
  4. After reboot, tool will launch automatically to continue Cleanup.

Another option is to delete CitrixVdaCleanup value under HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce. Then after reboot, run¬†VDACleanupUtility.exe /silent /reboot to indicate that it’s running after the reboot.

Related Pages

Delivery Controller 1909 and Licensing

Last Modified: Sep 22, 2019 @ 10:14 am

Navigation

ūüí° = Recently Updated

Change Log

Upgrade

If you are performing a new install of Delivery Controller, then skip to the next section.

Starting in August 2018:

  • XenApp and XenDesktop is renamed to Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD)
  • Versioning changed to YYMM format.
    • Version 1808 is newer than 7.18

You can in-place upgrade directly from any Delivery Controller version 7.0 or newer. Citrix recommends upgrading Delivery Controller 5.6 to 7.6 LTSR Cumulative Update 6 before upgrading to 1909 or 1906.

During the upgrade of Delivery Controller, be aware that a database upgrade is required. Either get a DBA to grant you temporary sysadmin permission, or use Citrix Studio to generate SQL scripts that a DBA must then run in SQL Studio.

  1. NVIDIA – ensure your NVIDIA Virtual GPU software supports the version of CVAD that you are upgrading to.
  2. Consider Utilizing Local Host Cache for Nondisruptive Database Upgrades at Citrix Docs.
  3. License Server Upgrade РBefore upgrading to Delivery Controller 1909, if you have a standalone Citrix Licensing Server, upgrade it to 11.16.3.0 Build 28000. The Delivery Controllers will be non-functional until you upgrade the License Server.

    • You can run¬†LicServVerify.exe from the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) ISO to verify that the License Server is compatible. Example syntax is: "E:\x64\XenDesktop Setup\LicServVerify.exe" -h myLicenseServer -p 27000 -v

  4. Frequent updates/upgrades– Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) 1909 and CVAD 1906 are Current Releases.
    • With Current Release (CR), you’re expected to upgrade to the future version 1912 to receive bug fixes. Newer Current Releases come with new features, which might include new bugs. Current Releases are only supported for six months from the release date. That means you should plan to perform these upgrades at least twice a year.
    • If you don’t want to continuously upgrade to the latest Current Release, then you can stay on¬†LTSR 7.15, which receives¬†Cumulative Updates¬†with bug fixes, but no new features.¬†See¬†Lifecycle Milestones for Citrix Virtual Apps & Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops.
  5. Delivery Controller OS Compatibility – 1909 and 1906 Delivery Controller are supported on Windows Server 2019, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2012 R2.
    • Windows Server 2008 R2 is no longer supported.
  6. VDA OS Compatibility – Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA) 1909 and VDA 1906 are only supported on a limited number of Windows operating system versions, specifically, Windows 10 (1607+), Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2019.
    • If you have older VDA machines running Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2, you can leave their VDA software at version 7.15 (with latest Cumulative Update). Citrix supports VDA 7.15 to communicate with Delivery Controllers 1909 and 1906.
  7. SCOM Agent РIf StoreFront is installed on the Controller, and if the Citrix SCOM Agent for StoreFront is installed, stop the Citrix MPSF Agent service. See CTX220935 Cannot Perform a StoreFront Upgrade if Citrix SCOM Management Pack Agent Service is Running.
  8. Close PowerShell and Consoles. Make sure all Citrix Consoles and PowerShell consoles are closed. StoreFront won’t upgrade if any are running. If StoreFront fails, then the StoreFront configuration is wiped out and you’ll have to revert to snapshot.
  9. Other Users – Use Task Manager > Users tab to logoff any other user currently logged into the machine.
  10. Snapshot. If StoreFront is installed on the Controller, take a snapshot before attempting the upgrade.
  11. Download the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 1909 ISO.
  12. Run AutoSelect.exe from the 1909 or 1906.2 ISO.

  13. On the top left, click Studio and Server Components.
  14. In the Licensing Agreement page, select I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  15. In the Ensure Successful Upgrade page, read the steps, check the box next to¬†I’m ready to continue, and click¬†Next.
  16. If you see a License Errors page, then you need to upgrade your License Server.
  17. In the Preliminary Site Tests page, click Start Preliminary Tests.
  18. The tests will take a few minutes. Click Next when done.
  19. In the Firewall page, click Next.
  20. In the Summary page, click Upgrade.
  21. If you see a Running Processes window, close the listed programs, and click Continue.
  22. Click OK when asked to start the upgrade.
  23. The machine will probably reboot a couple times.

    1. After the reboot, and after logging in again, you might see a¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media window. Don’t click anything yet.
    2. Go to the Citrix_Virtual_Apps_and_Desktops_7_1909.iso file and mount it.
    3. Go back to the¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media¬†window.
    4. On the left, expand This PC, and click the DVD Drive.
    5. Click Select Folder.
    6. Installation will resume. Repeat these instructions after each reboot.
  24. If the upgrade fails:
    1. Look for MetaInstaller log files under %localappdata%\Temp\Citrix\XenDesktop Installer\MSI Log Files.
    2. Look for StoreFront log files under C:\Program Files\Citrix\Receiver StoreFront\Admin\logs.
    3. Citrix has a MSI Log Analyzer.
  25. In the Diagnostics page, you can optionally enable Collect diagnostic information (aka Call Home). If so, click Connect and login with a Citrix Cloud account. See Citrix Insight Services at Citrix Docs for more information on this feature.
  26. Then click Next.
  27. In the Finish page, check the box next to Launch Studio, and click Finish.

Studio – Upgrade Database, Catalogs, and Delivery Groups

  1. After Citrix Studio launches, if you have¬†sysadmin permissions on SQL, then click¬†Start the automatic Site upgrade. If you don’t have full SQL permission, then get a DBA to help you, click¬†Manually upgrade this site, and follow the instructions.

    • If you choose to¬†Manually upgrade this site, then note that there might not be an upgrade for the Logging Database schema, depending on what version you are upgrading from.

  2. After all Controllers and VDAs are upgraded, in Citrix Studio, view your Catalog for the current functional level (Set to VDA version). Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) 1909 and CVAD 1906 lets you upgrade your Catalogs and Delivery Groups to functional level 1811.

    1. Don’t upgrade the Catalog or Delivery Group until all VDAs with the Catalog and Delivery Group are VDA version 1811 or newer.
    2. Right-click the Catalog, and click Upgrade Catalog.
      Note: you might not see the Upgrade Catalog option until you reboot the Delivery Controller.

    3. Review the message regarding suitability of the upgrade and then click Upgrade.
    4. Then upgrade the Delivery Groups by right-clicking on a Delivery Group and clicking Upgrade Delivery Group.
    5. Review the suitability message and then click Upgrade.

Other Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops components can also be in-place upgraded:

New Install Preparation

Frequent updates/upgrades

Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) 1909 and 1906 are Current Releases.

  • With Current Release (CR), you’re expected to upgrade to the future 1912 to receive bug fixes. Current Releases also come with new features, which might include new bugs. Current Releases are only supported for six months from the release date. That means you should plan to perform these upgrades at least twice a year.
  • If you don’t want to continuously upgrade to the latest Current Release, then you can stay on¬†LTSR 7.15, which receives¬†Cumulative Updates¬†with bug fixes, but no new features.¬†See¬†Lifecycle Milestones for Citrix Virtual Apps & Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops.

OS Compatibility

Delivery Controller 1909 and Delivery Controller 1906 are supported on Windows 2012 R2 and newer, including Windows Server 2019. Windows Server 2008 R2 is no longer supported.

Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA) 1909 and VDA 1906 are only supported on a limited number of Windows operating system versions, specifically, Windows 10 (1607+), Windows Server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2019.

  • If you have older VDA machines running Windows 7 or Windows Server 2008 R2, you can install VDA software version 7.15. Citrix supports VDA 7.15 communicating with Delivery Controllers 1909 and 1906.

Installation Automation

If you want to automate the install of Delivery Controllers, see Dennis Span Citrix Delivery Controller unattended installation with PowerShell and SCCM.

Citrix Licensing

If you are going to use an existing Citrix Licensing Server, then upgrade it to 11.16.3.0 build 28000.

  • You can run¬†LicServVerify.exe from the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) ISO to verify that the License Server is compatible. Example syntax is: "E:\x64\XenDesktop Setup\LicServVerify.exe" -h myLicenseServer -p 27000 -v

Multiple License Types РMultiple license types (but not multiple editions) are supported in a single farm. See CTX223926 How to Configure Multiple License Types within a Single XenApp and XenDesktop Site.

SQL Databases for Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops

  • Citrix CTX209080 Database Sizing Tool for XenDesktop 7
  • Citrix article¬†CTX114501 –¬†Supported Databases for XenApp and XenDesktop Components
  • Three databases – There are typically three databases: one for the Site (aka farm), one for Logging (audit log) and one for Monitoring (Director).
    • The name of the monitoring¬†database must not have any spaces in it. See¬†CTX200325 Database Naming Limitation when Citrix Director Accesses Monitoring Data Using OData APIs
    • If you want Citrix Studio to create the SQL databases automatically, then the person running Studio must be a sysadmin on the SQL instances. No lesser SQL role¬†will work.¬†sysadmin permissions can be granted temporarily and revoked after installation.
    • As an alternative, you can use Citrix Studio to create SQL scripts, and then run those scripts on the SQL server. In that case, the person running the scripts only needs the dbcreator and securityadmin roles.
      • CVAD 1909 and newer supports using PowerShell to generate separate SQL scripts for sysadmin vs db_owner. See Preferred database rights scripts at Citrix Docs. ūüí°
    • It is possible to create the three databases in advance. However, you must use the non-default¬†Latin1_General_100_CI_AS_KS collation.
  • SQL High Availability Options:
    • Basic Availability Groups – Build two SQL 2016 (or newer) Standard Edition servers, and create three Basic Availability Groups, one for each database. Each Basic Availability Group has its own Listener.
    • Database Mirroring – Build two SQL 2014 or older Standard Edition servers, and configure Database Mirroring.
    • AlwaysOn Availability Group – Build two SQL Enterprise Edition servers, and create one AlwaysOn Availability Group with one Listener.
    • Failover Clustering – Build two SQL Enterprise Edition servers, and configure SQL Database Failover Clustering.
  • Cloud – Azure SQL and AWS RDS are not supported. You’ll need to build your own SQL Servers on IaaS VMs.

Windows Feature

Installing Group Policy Management (GPMC) on the Delivery Controllers lets you edit Citrix-targeted Group Policy Objects (GPOs) directly from the Delivery Controllers.

Citrix has a Citrix Group Policy Management Plug-in that adds the Citrix Policies node to the Group Policy Editor. The Citrix Group Policy Management Plug-in is included with the installation of Citrix Studio, meaning that running GPMC on the Delivery Controller automatically grants you access to the Citrix Policies node in the GPOs. If you edit GPOs on a machine that doesn’t have Citrix Studio installed, then you won’t see the Citrix Policies node in GPOs until you manually install the¬†Citrix Group Policy Management Plug-in.

vCenter Service Account

Create a role in vSphere Client. Assign a service account to the role at the vCenter Datacenter or higher level. Delivery Controller will use this service account to login to vCenter.

Delivery Controller New Install

  1. A typical size for the Controller VMs is 2-4 vCPU and 8+ GB of RAM. If all components (Delivery Controller, StoreFront, Licensing, Director, SQL Express) are installed on one server, then you might want to bump up memory to 10 GB or 12 GB. 5 GB is the minimum memory.
  2. From Local Host Cache sizing and scaling at Citrix Docs:
    1. For LHC LocalDB, assign the Controller VMs a single socket with multiple cores.
    2. Add two cores for LHC.
    3. Add at least three more Gigs of RAM and watch the memory consumption.
    4. Since there’s no control over LHC election, ensure all Controllers have the same specs.
    5. SQL LocalDB uses max four cores on one socket. Configure the Delivery Controller VM with four cores per socket.
  3. Operating System: Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) 1909 and CVAD 1906 are supported on Windows Server 2019, Windows Server 2016, and Windows Server 2012 R2.
  4. Make sure the User Right Log on as a service includes NT SERVICE\ALL SERVICES, or add NT SERVICE\CitrixTelemetryService to the User Right.
  5. Download the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7 1909 ISO.
  6. On two Delivery Controllers, to install the Delivery Controller software, run AutoSelect.exe from the mounted 1909 ISO.

  7. Click Start next to either Virtual Apps or Virtual Apps and Desktops. The only difference is the product name displayed in the installation wizard.
  8. On the top left, click Delivery Controller.
  9. In the Licensing Agreement page, select I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  10. In the Core Components page, you can install all components on one server, or on separate servers. Splitting out the components is only necessary in large environments, or if you have multiple farms and want to share the Licensing, StoreFront, and Director components across those farms. Click Next.
  11. In the Features page, uncheck the box next to Install Microsoft SQL Server 2014 SP2 Express, and click Next.
  12. In the Firewall page, click Next.
  13. In the Summary page, click Install.
  14. The machine will probably reboot a couple times.

    1. After the reboot, and after logging in again, you might see a¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media window. Don’t click anything yet.
    2. Go to the Citrix_Virtual_Apps_and_Desktops_7_1909.iso file and mount it.
    3. Go back to the¬†Locate ‘Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7’ installation media¬†window.
    4. On the left, expand This PC, and click the DVD Drive.
    5. Click Select Folder.
    6. Installation will resume. Repeat these instructions after each reboot.
  15. In the Smart Tools page, make a selection. If you choose Smart Tools and Call Home, then click Connect, and enter your Citrix Cloud or MyCitrix.com credentials. Click Next.
  16. In the Finish page, click Finish. Citrix Studio will automatically launch.
  17. Ensure the two Delivery Controller VMs do not run on the same hypervisor host. Create an anti-affinity rule at vSphere Cluster > Manage > Settings > DRS Rules > Add. Set the Type to Separate Virtual Machines.
  18. Citrix Tech Zone Endpoint Security and Antivirus Best Practices: provides guidelines for configuring antivirus software in Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops environments

Create Site – Create Database

There are several methods of creating the databases for Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD):

  • If you have sysadmin permissions to SQL, let Citrix Studio create the databases automatically.
  • If you don‚Äôt have sysadmin permissions to SQL, then use Citrix Studio to generate SQL scripts, and send the scripts to a DBA.

Use Citrix Studio to Create the Databases Automatically

  1. Launch Citrix Studio. After it loads, click Deliver applications and desktops to your users.
  2. In the Introduction page, select An empty, unconfigured site. This reduces the number of pages in this Setup wizard. The removed pages will be configured later.
  3. Enter a Site Name (aka farm name), and click Next. Only administrators see the farm name.
  4. In the Databases page, if you are building two Delivery Controllers, click Select near the bottom of the same page.

    1. Click Add.
    2. Enter the FQDN of the second Delivery Controller, and click OK. Note: the Delivery Controller software must already be installed on that second machine.
    3. Then click Save.
  5. If the person running Citrix Studio has sysadmin permissions to the SQL Server, then enter the SQL server name/instance in the three Location fields, and click Next.
  6. If you don’t have¬†sysadmin permission, then jump to the SQL Scripts section below.
  7. On the Licensing page, enter the name of the Citrix License Server, and click Connect. If you installed Licensing with your Delivery Controller, then simply enter localhost.
  8. If the Certificate Authentication appears, select Connect me, and click Confirm.
  9. Select your license type, and click Next. If you see both User/Device and Concurrent, then you usually must select User/Device licenses. Also see CTX223926 How to Configure Multiple License Types within a Single XenApp and XenDesktop Site.
  10. In the Summary page, if your databases are mirrored or in an Availability Group, each database will show high availability servers, and the name of the Mirror server. Click Finish.

  11. It will take some time for the site to be created.
  12. Once done, skip to the Second Delivery Controller section.

Use Citrix Studio to create SQL scripts

  1. If you don’t have SQL¬†sysadmin permissions, then change the selection to Generate scripts to manually set up databases on the database server.¬†Change the database names if desired, and click¬†Next.
  2. In the Summary page, click Generate scripts.
  3. A folder will open with six scripts. Edit each of the scripts.
  4. Near the top of each script are two lines to create the database. Uncomment both lines (including the go line). Then save and close the file.

  5. Once all of the scripts are edited, you can send them to your DBA.
    1. On the Principal SQL Server, open the file Site_Principal.sql.

    2. Open the Query menu, and click SQLCMD Mode to enable it.
    3. Then execute the script.
    4. If SQLCMD mode was enabled properly, then the output should look something like this:
    5. If you have a mirrored database, run the second script on the mirror SQL instance. Make sure SQLCMD mode is enabled.
    6. Repeat for the Logging_Principal.sql script.
    7. You’ll have to enable SQLCMD Mode for each script you open.


    8. Repeat for the Monitoring_Principal.sql script.
    9. Once again enable SQLCMD Mode.


    10. The person running Citrix Studio must be added to the SQL Server as a SQL Login, and granted the public server role, so that account can enumerate the databases.

  6. Back in Citrix Studio, click the Continue database configuration and Site setup button.
  7. In the Databases page, enter the SQL server name, and instance name, and click Next.

  8. On the Licensing page, enter the name of the Citrix License Server, and click Connect. If you installed Citrix Licensing with your Delivery Controller, then simply enter localhost.
  9. If the Certificate Authentication window appears, select Connect me, and click Confirm.
  10. Then select your license, and click Next. See CTX223926 How to Configure Multiple License Types within a Single XenApp and XenDesktop Site.
  11. In the Summary page, if your databases are mirrored, each database will show high availability servers, and the name of the Mirror server. Click Finish.

  12. It will take some time for the site to be created.

Second Controller

During Site creation, you might have selected more than one Delivery Controller. In that case, simply run Citrix Studio on the already configured additional Delivery Controllers. If Citrix Studio is already open, close it and reopen it to see the farm configuration.

Otherwise, additional Delivery Controllers need to be added to the SQL databases.

  • If you have sysadmin permissions to SQL, let Citrix Studio modify the databases automatically.
  • If you don‚Äôt have sysadmin permissions to SQL then use Citrix Studio to generate SQL scripts and send them to a DBA.

To use Citrix Studio to create the SQL Scripts:

  1. On the first Delivery Controller, if StoreFront is installed on the Controller, then delete the default StoreFront store (/Citrix/Store), and recreate it with your desired Store name (e.g. /Citrix/CompanyStore).
  2. On the second Delivery Controller machine, install Delivery Controller as detailed earlier.
  3. After installation, launch Citrix Studio on the second controller, and click Connect this Delivery Controller to an existing Site.
  4. Enter the name of the first Delivery Controller, and click OK.
  5. If you don’t have full SQL permissions (sysadmin), click No when asked if you want to update the database automatically.
  6. Click Generate scripts.
  7. A folder will open with six scripts. If not mirroring, then the top three scripts need to be sent to a DBA. If mirroring, send all six.
  8. On the SQL Server, open one of the .sql files.

  9. Open the Query menu, and click SQLCMD Mode.
  10. Then execute the SQL script.
  11. If SQLCMD mode was enabled properly, then the output should look something like this:
  12. Repeat for the remaining script files.
  13. Back in Citrix Studio, click OK.
  14. In Citrix Studio, under Configuration > Controllers, you should see both controllers.

SSL for Delivery Controller

SSL certificates should be installed on each Delivery Controller to encrypt the traffic between StoreFront and Delivery Controller. The traffic between StoreFront and Delivery Controller contains user credentials.

The SSL certificate on each Delivery Controller needs to match the FQDN of the Delivery Controller.

  • If StoreFront is installed on the Delivery Controller, then you have two FQDNs to consider: the Delivery Controller FQDN, and the StoreFront FQDN.¬†Make sure the certificate matches the Delivery Controller FQDN, but it’s usually not necessary for the same certificate to also match the StoreFront FQDN.
    • The StoreFront certificate is usually hosted on a Citrix ADC SSL Load Balancing Virtual Server. Users connect to Citrix ADC instead of directly to the StoreFront servers. The StoreFront certificate only needs to be valid between the user and the ADC.
    • For the connection between ADC and StoreFront server, ADC does not validate the certificate so the certificate on the StoreFront server can be anything. That means you can install a certificate that matches the Delivery Controller FQDN, but there’s no need for the certificate to match the StoreFront FQDN.

To enable SSL for a Delivery Controller:

  1. Run¬†certlm.msc, go to Personal > Certificates, and create or install a server certificate that matches the Delivery Controller’s FQDN. This can be an internally-signed certificate if the StoreFront server trusts internally-signed certificates.
  2. If IIS is installed on the Delivery Controller, then simply run IIS Manager, go to Default Web Site, click Edit Bindings, and add an https binding using the chosen certificate.

If IIS is not installed on the Delivery Controller, then we need to build a command line to bind the certificate to Citrix Broker Service.

  1. Open a command prompt as administrator.
  2. Enter the following text but don’t press Enter yet.
    netsh http add sslcert ipport=0.0.0.0:443 certhash=
  3. Right after certhash= paste the certificate thumbprint using the following procedure:
    1. Go to certlm.msc > Personal > Certificates.
    2. Double-click the certificate you want to bind.
    3. On the Details tab, scroll down to Thumbprint and copy the thumbprint.
    4. Paste the thumbprint into the command line we’re building.
    5. Remove the special character at the beginning of the thumbprint.
    6. Remove the spaces.
  4. Add the following to the command line:
     appid=
  5. Michael Shuster at¬†HowTo: Enable SSL on Citrix Delivery Controllers ‚Äď Easy Method says you can run the following PowerShell to get the Broker Service GUID.
    Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_Product | Select-String -Pattern "broker service"
  6. Paste the GUID for Citrix Broker Service that you got from the Get-WmiObject. Make sure the GUID has curly braces on both sides with no space between appid and the left curly brace.
  7. Press <Enter> to run the command.
  8. If you entered everything correctly, then it should say SSL Certificate successfully added.
  9. To confirm the certificate binding, run the following:
    netsh http show sslcert ipport=0.0.0.0:443

Studio ‚Äď Slow Launch

From B.J.M. Groenhout at Citrix Discussions: The following adjustments can be made if Desktop Studio (and other Citrix management Consoles) will start slowly:

  • Within Internet Explorer, go to Tools ‚Äď Internet Options ‚Äď Tab Advanced ‚Äď Section Security, and uncheck the option Check for publisher‚Äôs certificate revocation

After adjustment Desktop Studio (MMC) will be started immediately. Without adjustment it may take some time before Desktop Studio (MMC) is started.

Registry setting (can be deployed using Group Policy Preferences):

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\WinTrust\Trust Providers\Software Publishing
    • State“=dword:00023e00

Concurrent Logon Hard Limit

From Samuel Legrand XenApp 7.14 ‚Äď (Really) Manage a DR! – Citrix Policies has a setting called¬†Concurrent Logon Tolerance. However, it is not a hard limit, meaning once the limits are reached, it continues to let users connect. You can configure the Controllers to make it a hard limit by setting the following registry value:

  • HKLM\Software\Policies\Citrix\DesktopServer
    • LogonToleranceIsHardLimit (DWORD) = 1

Local Host Cache

If you have 10,000 or fewer VDAs per zone (up to 40,000 VDAs per multi-zone site/farm), you can enable Local Host Cache (LHC) instead of Connection Leasing. LHC allows new sessions to be started even if SQL database is unavailable.

From Local Host Cache sizing and scaling at Citrix Docs:

  1. For LHC LocalDB, assign the Controller VMs a single socket with multiple cores.
  2. Add two cores for LHC.
  3. Add at least three more Gigs of RAM and watch the memory consumption.
  4. Since there’s no control over LHC election, ensure all Controllers have the same specs.
  5. The Docs article has scripts for monitoring LHC performance.

From XenApp 7.12, LHC and a reboot at Citrix Discussions:

  • If the rebooted DDC is the elected one, a different DDC will take over (causing registration storm) and when the DDC gets back, it will take over brokering causing second registration storm. Site will sort itself out and all will work.
  • If the rebooted DDC is not the elected one, it will not impact any functionality.
  • If you turn the DDC down when site is working, and start it during outage, LHC will not trigger on that machine. This DDC will not impact the LHC unless it would become the elected one. In that scenario it will take control, however not start LHC and resources would not be available.

Trentent Tye at¬†Citrix XenDesktop/XenApp 7.15 ‚Äď The local host cache in action has a video showing LHC in action.

As mentioned by Citrix Docs, make sure PowerShell Execution Policy is set to RemoteSigned, Unrestricted, or Bypass.

If you did a fresh install of 1909 or 1906, then Local Host Cache should be enabled by default. You can run Get-BrokerSite to confirm. (run asnp citrix.* first).

If not enabled, you can run some PowerShell commands to enable Local Host Cache:

asnp citrix.*
Set-BrokerSite -ConnectionLeasingEnabled $false
Set-BrokerSite -LocalHostCacheEnabled $true

George Spiers Local Host Cache XenApp & XenDesktop shows the Event Log entries when LHC is enabled.

Database Maintenance

Enable Read-Committed Snapshot

The Delivery Controller Database can become heavily utilized under load in a large environment. Therefore Citrix recommends enabling the Read_Committed_Snapshot option on the Delivery Controller databases to remove contention on the database from read queries. This can improve the interactivity of Studio and Director. It should be noted that this option may increase the load on the tempdb files. See Citrix article CTX137161 How to Enable Read-Committed Snapshot in XenDesktop for configuration instructions.

Change Database Connection Strings

Sometimes the database connection strings need to be modified:

  • When moving the SQL databases to a different SQL server
  • For AlwaysOn Availability Groups, to add MultiSubnetFailover to the SQL connection strings
  • For SQL mirroring, to add Failover Partner to the SQL connection strings

Here are general instructions for moving the database and assigning the correct permissions:

  1. Backup the three Citrix databases on the original SQL server, and restore them on the new SQL server. See Microsoft’s documentation for details.
  2. In SQL Management Studio > Security > Logins, add the Delivery Controller computer accounts (e.g. CORP\DDC01$)
  3. When adding the SQL Login, on the User Mapping page, select the three Citrix databases (Site database, Monitoring database, and Logging database)
  4. For each of the three Citrix databases, add the Delivery Controller computer account to the various database roles as listed below. The Site database has many more roles than the Logging and Monitoring databases.
    • Site database – ADIdentitySchema_ROLE
    • Site database – Analytics_ROLE (7.8 and newer)
    • Site database – AppLibrarySchema_ROLE (7.8 and newer)
    • Site database – chr_Broker
    • Site database – chr_Controller
    • Site database – ConfigLoggingSchema_ROLE
    • Site database – ConfigLoggingSiteSchema_ROLE
    • Site database – ConfigurationSchema_ROLE
    • Site database – DAS_ROLE
    • Site database – DesktopUpdateManagerSchema_ROLE
    • Site database – EnvTestServiceSchema_ROLE
    • Site database – HostingUnitServiceSchema_ROLE
    • Site database – Monitor_ROLE
    • Site database – MonitorData_ROLE
    • Site database – OrchestrationSchema_ROLE (7.11 and newer)
    • Site database – public
    • Site database – StorefrontSchema_ROLE (7.8 and newer)
    • Site database – TrustSchema_ROLE (7.11 and newer)
    • Monitoring database – Monitor_ROLE
    • Monitoring database – public
    • Logging database – ConfigLoggingSchema_ROLE
    • Logging database – public

From Citrix Docs Update database connection strings when using SQL Server high availability solutions: Citrix offers several PowerShell scripts that update Delivery Controller database connection strings when you are using SQL Server high availability database solutions such as AlwaysOn and mirroring. The scripts, which use the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops PowerShell API, are:

  • DBConnectionStringFuncs.ps1: The core script that does the actual work. This script contains common functions that the other scripts use.
  • Change_XD_Failover_Partner_v1.ps1: Updates (adds, changes, or removes) the failover partner. This script prompts for the failover partner location (FQDN) for each database. (Providing a blank failover partner removes the failover partner. You can also use the ClearPartner option to remove a partner.) Do not set the failover partner to the same location as the principal database server.
  • Change_XD_To_ConnectionString.ps1: Uses the provided connection strings to update the connection strings to the databases. This script ensures that certain Citrix services are up and running, and then updates those services in the correct order on all Controllers in the site. Enclose connection string information for each database in quotes.
  • Change_XD_To_MultiSubnetFailover.ps1: Toggles the addition and removal of MultiSubnetFailover=true. If you use AlwaysOn Availability Groups, Microsoft recommends that the connection string include MultiSubnetFailover=true. This option speeds up recovery when a high availability event occurs, and is recommended for both single and multi-subnet environments. Run this script once to add the option. Run the script again to remove it.
  • Change_XD_To_Null.ps1: Resets all the connection strings on the localhost because something has gone wrong. By resetting the connection strings to null, this script places the Controller into an ‚Äúinitial‚ÄĚ state. If you run Studio after running this script, you’ll be asked if you want to create a site or join an existing site. This is useful if something has gone wrong and a reset is needed. After the reset, you can try again to set the connection strings.

Here are the DB Connections that must be changed. Make sure you include all of the DB Connections shown below. You can get the full list of database commands by running Get-Command Set-*DBConnection. When changing the DB connections, AdminDBConnection must be the last to be set to NULL, and the first to be configured with the new connection string.

Remove the existing Database connections

At the Delivery Controller, open PowerShell as Administrator and run the following commands to clear the existing database connections.

## Load the Citrix snap-ins
asnp Citrix.*

## Disable configuration logging for the XD site:
Set-LogSite -State Disabled

## ## Clear the current Delivery Controller database connections
## Note: AdminDBConnection must be the last command
Set-ConfigDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-AppLibDBConnection ‚ÄďDBConnection $null ¬† ¬†#7.8 and newer
Set-OrchDBConnection ‚ÄďDBConnection $null ¬† ¬†  #7.11 and newer
Set-TrustDBConnection ‚ÄďDBConnection $null     #7.11 and newer
Set-AcctDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-AnalyticsDBConnection -DBConnection $null # 7.6 and newer
Set-HypDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-ProvDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-BrokerDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-EnvTestDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-SfDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-MonitorDBConnection -DataStore Monitor -DBConnection $null   #Monitoring Database
Set-MonitorDBConnection -DBConnection $null                      #Site Database
Set-LogDBConnection -DataStore Logging -DBConnection $null       #Logging Database
Set-LogDBConnection -DBConnection $null                          #Site Database
Set-AdminDBConnection -DBConnection $null -force

Specify the new Database connection strings

Run the following commands to set the new connection strings.¬†Adjust the variables to match your desired connection string. For example, if you wish to add “;MultiSubnetFailover=True” to the connection strings, then set the $csSite variable to "Server=$ServerName;Initial Catalog=$SiteDBName;Integrated Security=True;MultiSubnetFailover=True".¬†Repeat this for the $csLogging and $csMonitoring variables.

## Replace <dbserver> with the SQL server name, and instance if present, e.g "ServerName\SQLInstanceName". If no SQL Instance name is mentioned, this commandlet will try to connect to the default SQL instance.
## Replace <dbname> with the name of your restored Database
## Note: AdminDBConnection should be first

$ServerName = "<dbserver>"
$SiteDBName = "<SiteDbName>"
$LogDBName = "<LoggingDbName>"
$MonitorDBName = "<MonitorDbName>"
$csSite = "Server=$ServerName;Initial Catalog=$SiteDBName;Integrated Security=True;MultiSubnetFailover=True"
$csLogging = "Server=$ServerName;Initial Catalog=$LogDBName;Integrated Security=True;MultiSubnetFailover=True"
$csMonitoring = "Server=$ServerName;Initial Catalog=$MonitorDBName;Integrated Security=True;MultiSubnetFailover=True"

Set-AdminDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-ConfigDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-AcctDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-AnalyticsDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite # 7.6 and newer
Set-HypDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite 
Set-ProvDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-AppLibDBConnection ‚ÄďDBConnection $csSite # 7.8 and newer
Set-OrchDBConnection ‚ÄďDBConnection $csSite # 7.11 and newer
Set-TrustDBConnection ‚ÄďDBConnection $csSite # 7.11 and newer
Set-BrokerDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-EnvTestDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-SfDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-LogDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-LogDBConnection -DataStore Logging -DBConnection $null
Set-LogDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-LogDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-LogDBConnection -DataStore Logging -DBConnection $csLogging
Set-MonitorDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-MonitorDBConnection -DataStore Monitor -DBConnection $null
Set-MonitorDBConnection -DBConnection $null
Set-MonitorDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Set-MonitorDBConnection -DataStore Monitor -DBConnection $csMonitoring
Set-LogSite -State Enabled

Test the new Database connection strings

Run the following commands to verify connectivity to the database:

asnp citrix.*

## Copy these variables from the previous step
## If you haven’t closed your PowerShell window, then the variables might still be defined. In that case, just run the Test commands
$ServerName = "<dbserver>"
$SiteDBName = "<SiteDbName>"
$LogDBName = "<LoggingDbName>"
$MonitorDBName = "<MonitorDbName>"
$csSite = "Server=$ServerName;Initial Catalog=$SiteDBName;Integrated Security=True"
$csLogging = "Server=$ServerName;Initial Catalog=$LogDBName;Integrated Security=True"
$csMonitoring = "Server=$ServerName;Initial Catalog=$MonitorDBName;Integrated Security=True"

Test-AcctDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-AdminDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-AnalyticsDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite # 7.6 and newer
Test-AppLibDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite # 7.8 and newer
Test-BrokerDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-ConfigDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-EnvTestDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-HypDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-LogDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-LogDBConnection -DataStore Logging -DBConnection $csLogging
Test-MonitorDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-MonitorDBConnection -Datastore Monitor -DBConnection $csMonitoring
Test-OrchDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite # 7.11 and newer
Test-ProvDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-SfDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite
Test-TrustDBConnection -DBConnection $csSite # 7.11 and newer

Director Grooming

If your Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops is not Premium Edition, then all historical Director data is groomed at 30 days.

For Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Premium Edition, by default, most of the historical Director data is groomed at 90 days. This can be adjusted up to 367 days by running a PowerShell cmdlet.

  1. On a Delivery Controller, run PowerShell elevated (as administrator), and run asnp Citrix.*
  2. Run Get-MonitorConfiguration to see the current grooming settings.
  3. Run Set-MonitorConfiguration to change the grooming settings.

View Logging Database

To view the contents of the Logging Database, in Studio, click the Logging node. On the right is Create Custom Report. See Citrix article CTX138132 Viewing Configuration Logging Data Not Shown for more info.

The Logging Database can be queried using Get-LogLowLevelOperation. See Stefan Beckmann Get user who set maintenance mode for a server or client for an example script that uses this PowerShell cmdlet.

Logging Database Grooming

By default, the Logging Database does not groom old entries. You can enable grooming in Citrix PowerShell by running the Set-LogSite cmdlet with the -LoggingDBPurgeDurationDays parameter. More info at Schedule periodic data deletion at Citrix Docs. ūüí°

Citrix¬†CTX215069¬†Troubleshooting and managing Oversized Configuration Logging database:¬†The article’s¬†queries can be used to determine the number of configuration operation types performed by Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Administrator, and to analyze the content of the Configuration Logging database when it is considered oversized.¬†A grooming query is also provided to delete data older than a specified date.

Export/Import Configuration

Ryan Butler has a PowerShell script that can export configuration from one Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops farm and import it to another.

Kaspars Vilde at XenDesktop/XenApp 7.X Applications РExporting / Importing at Citrix Discussions has scripts to export published apps from one farm and import to another farm.

Studio Administrators

Full Administrators

  1. In the Studio, under Configuration, click the Administrators node. The first time you access the node you‚Äôll see a Welcome¬†page. Feel free to check the box to Don’t show this again, and then click Close.
  2. On the Administrators tab, right-click, and click Create Administrator.
  3. In the Administrator and Scope page, Browse to a group (e.g. Citrix Admins) that will have permissions to Citrix Studio and Director. These groups typically have access to all objects, so select the All scope. Alternatively, you can create a Scope to limit the objects. Click Next.
  4. On the Role page, select a role, and then click Next. For example:
    • Full Administrator for the Citrix Admins group
    • Help Desk Administrator for the Help Desk group
    • Machine Catalog Administrator for the desktop team
  5. In the Summary page, click Finish.

Help Desk

  1. In Citrix Studio, under Configuration, click the Administrators node. On the Administrators tab, right-click, and click Create Administrator.
  2. In the Administrator and Scope page, Browse to a Help Desk group that will have permissions to Citrix Studio and Director. Select the All scope. And click Next.
  3. On the Role page, select the Help Desk Administrator role, and then click Next.
  4. In the Summary page, click Finish.
  5. When administrators in the Help Desk role log into Director, all they see is this.

    To jazz it up a little, add the Help Desk group to the read-only role.
  6. Right-click the Help Desk Administrator, and click Edit Administrator.
  7. Click Add.
  8. In the Scope page, select a scope, and click Next.
  9. In the Role page, select Read Only Administrator, and click Next.
  10. In the Summary page, click Finish.
  11. Then click OK. Now Director will display the dashboard.

Customer Experience Improvement Program

Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops enables CEIP by default. If desired, you can disable it in Citrix Studio:

  1. On the left, go to the Configuration node.
  2. On the right, switch to the Product Support tab.
  3. Click End.
  4. Click Yes.

Citrix Studio collects data for Google Analytics. You can disable this in the registry at HKLM\Software\Citrix\DesktopStudio\GAEnabled = 0.

Each Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops component has a separate configuration for disabling Customer Experience Improvement Program:

vCenter Connection

Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops uses an Active Directory service account to log into VMware vCenter. This service account needs specific permissions in vCenter. To facilitate assigning these permissions, create a new vCenter role and assign it to the service account. The permissions should be applied at the vCenter datacenter or higher level.

Import vCenter Root Certificate

If the vCenter certificate is valid and trusted, then you can skip to the Hosting Resource section.

For newer versions of vCenter, you can import the root certificate that signed the vCenter Server/Appliance certificate.

  1. Point your browser to the root path of the vCenter Server URL.
  2. On the bottom right, click Download trusted root CA certificates.
  3. Extract the downloaded files.
  4. Go to \certs\win.
  5. Sort the files by date, and double-click the newest .crt file.
  6. On the General tab, click Install Certificate.
  7. In the Welcome to the Certificate Import Wizard page, change the Store Location selection to Local Machine, and click Next.
  8. In the Certificate Store page, click Browse.
  9. Select Trust Root Certification Authorities, and click OK.
  10. In the Completing the Certificate Import Wizard page, click Finish.
  11. If you close your browser and reopen it, and then go to the vCenter URL, there should no longer be any certificate errors.
  12. Skip to the Hosting Resource section.

Import vCenter Certificate

If the vCenter certificate is valid and trusted, then you can skip to the Hosting Resource section.

Alternatively, you can import the actual vCenter Server certificate (instead of the root). This is the only option for older self-signed vCenter certificates.

Newer versions of Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops have the ability to import the vCenter certificate thumbprint into the database so every Delivery Controller trusts it. However, it is difficult to update the thumbprint whenever the vCenter certificate changes. It might instead be more reliable to use the older method of configuring the¬†Trusted People store on the Delivery Controllers. Whenever the vCenter certificate is changed, you’ll need to repeat these steps.

  1. Get the vCenter certificate.
    1. Open a browser and point it to the vCenter URL. Note: this procedure to get the certificate won’t work in Internet Explorer.
    2. If Google Chrome, click the Secure box in the address bar, and then click Certificate.
    3. On the Details tab, click Copy to File.
    4. In the Welcome to the Certificate Export Wizard page, click Next.
    5. In the Export File Format page, either format will work. Click Next.
    6. In the File to Export page, browse to a new file, and click Next.
    7. In the Completing the Certificate Export Wizard page, click Finish.
  2. On the Delivery Controller, run certlm.msc. This opens the MMC console with the Certificates snap-in already added and pointing to Local computer.
  3. On the left, right-click the Trusted People node, expand All Tasks, and click Import.
  4. In the Welcome to the Certificate Import Wizard page, click Next.
  5. In the File to Import page, browse to the certificate you saved earlier, and click Next.
  6. In the Certificate Store page, click Next.
  7. In the Completing the Certificate Import Wizard page, click Finish.
  8. Click OK to acknowledge that the import was successful.
  9. Repeat these steps on the second Delivery Controller. It is important that you import the certificate on all Delivery Controllers before you add the Hosting Resource in Citrix Studio.
  10. If you open a browser and point o the vCenter Server, there should be no certificate errors.

Hosting Resources

A Hosting Resource = vCenter + Cluster (Resource Pool) + Storage + Network. When you create a machine catalog, you select a previously defined Hosting Resource, and the Cluster, Storage, and Network defined in the Hosting Resource object are automatically selected. If you need some VDA machines on a different Cluster+Storage+Network, then you’ll need to define more Hosting Resources in Studio.

  1. In Citrix Studio, expand Configuration and click Hosting. Right-click Hosting, and click Add Connection and Resources.
  2. In the Connection page, for Connection type, select VMware vSphere.
  3. Notice there’s a Learn about user permissions¬†blue link to an article that describes the necessary permissions.
  4. Enter https://vcenter01.corp.local/sdk as the vCenter URL. The URL must contain the FQDN of the vCenter server.
  5. Enter credentials of a service account that can log into vCenter.
  6. In the Connection name field, give the connection a name. Typically, this matches the name of the vCenter server.
  7. If you are not using Machine Creation Services, and instead only need the vCenter connection for machine power management, change the Create virtual machines using selection to Other Tools.
  8. If you intend to use MCS, leave Create virtual machines using set to Studio Tools.
  9. Click Next.

  10. In the Storage Management page, click Browse, and select a vSphere cluster.
    • Note: as detailed at CTX223662, make sure there’s no comma in the datacenter name.
  11. Select Use storage shared by hypervisors.
  12. Beware of¬†Optimize temporary data on available local storage.¬†From Mark Syms at¬†XA 7.9 MCS with RAM Caching¬†at Citrix Discussions: “If you use just MCS caching to local storage then the VM is not agile at all and cannot be moved even when powered off as it has a virtual disk permanently associated with a single host.”
  13. Click Next.
  14. In the Storage Selection page, OS and Personal vDisk must be selected on at least one datastore.
    • For maximum virtual machine placement flexibility, only select one datastore per Hosting Resource. To select additional datastores, run this wizard again to create a separate Hosting Resource for each datastore.
    • When creating a Machine Catalog, you select a Hosting Resource. If the Hosting Resource only has one datastore selected, then you know which datastore the new VMs will be placed on. However, if the Hosting Resource has multiple datastores, then the datastores are selected round robin, and you don’t have any control over which datastore is selected for each new machine.
  15. If you selected the temporary data on local storage option, on the bottom, click Select, and choose the datastores you want to use for disk caching. By default, all local datastores are selected. Click Next when done.
  16. In the Network page, enter a name for the Hosting Resource. Since each Hosting Resource is a combination of vCenter, Cluster, Network, and Datastores, include those names in this field (e.g. vCenter01-Cluster01-Network01-Datastore01).
  17. Select a network and click Next.
  18. In the Summary page, click Finish.
  19. If you need to rename Storage, Network, or Datacenters in vCenter, see Citrix CTX225019 XA/XD 7.13: Renaming Storage, Network or Datacenters When Used With MCS or PVS. Either run Update-HypHypervisorConnection -LiteralPath "XDHyp:\Connections\MyConnection", or right-click the Hosting Resource and click Edit Storage. You can cancel the wizard.

If you have multiple datastores for your VDAs:

  1. Run the Add Connection and Resources wizard again.
  2. You can use the existing vCenter connection.
  3. This time, select a different datastore. Remember, don’t select more than one datastore per Hosting Resource.
  4. Give the Hosting Resource a name that indicates the chosen datastore.

When you later create a Machine Catalog:

  1. Select the Hosting Resource for the datastore where you want the VDAs to be placed.
  2. You can create multiple Machine Catalogs, with each of them on different datastores. You can then combine the Catalogs into a single Delivery Group.
  3. Later in the Catalog wizard, you’re given an option to enable caching and select a cache size. This is similar to Provisioning Services option “Cache in RAM with overflow to disk”. Note: MCS’s version of memory caching seems to cause performance problems.

Citrix Licensing Server

Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 1909 comes with Citrix Licensing Server 11.16.3.0 build 28000.

New Licensing Server

If you’re building a new standalone Citrix License Server:

  1. Extract the downloaded Citrix Licensing 11.16.3.0 build 28000, and run CitrixLicensing.exe.

  2. In the Software License Agreement page, check the box next to I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  3. In the Install Location page, click Next.
  4. In the Configure Ports page, click Next.
  5. In the Configure Customer Success Services Renewal page, click Install.
  6. In the Summary page, click Finish.

Upgrade Licensing Server

If you have a standalone Licensing Server, upgrade it to Citrix Licensing 11.16.3.0 build 28000, if it isn’t already.

  1. Go to the downloaded Citrix Licensing 11.16.3.0 build 28000, and run CitrixLicensing.exe.

  2. If you see the Subscription Advantage Renewal page, make a selection, and click Next.
  3. In the Upgrade page, click Upgrade.
  4. Click Finish.
  5. If you go to Programs and Features, it should now show version 11.16.3.0 build 28000.
  6. If you login to the Citrix License Administration Console (:8082)…
  7. the Administration tab…
  8. It shows the version as 11.16.3.0 build 28000.
  9. After upgrading Citrix Licensing Server, in Citrix Studio, go to Configuration > Licensing.
  10. On the right, click Authenticate Certificate.
  11. Change the selection to Connect me, and click Confirm.

Citrix Licensing Manager

Newer versions of License Server come with a new management web site. Citrix seems to be slowly moving all License Server functionality to this new web site.

  1. From the Start Menu, run Citrix Licensing Manager. Or go to https://<My_Licensing_Server>:8083
  2. You might be prompted to login.

    • To eliminate this login, add the License Server URL to the Local Intranet zone.
  3. Build 27000 and newer might prompt you to register with Citrix Cloud.

    1. On the Settings > Usage and Statistics page, in the Share usage statistics with Citrix section, click Register.
    2. You’ll see a screen with a registration code. Click the¬†Copy button and then click Register to be take to Citrix Cloud.
    3. After logging in to Citrix Cloud, on the top left, click the menu (hamburger) icon and then click¬†License & Usage. If you don’t see this link, you might have to logout and log back in.
    4. In the License & Usage service, switch to the Registrations tab.
    5. Click the blue Register button in the middle of the page.
    6. Paste in the copied code and then click Continue.
    7. Click Register.
    8. Back in the on-premises Licensing Manager, it will eventually show as Registered.
    9. On the same Usage & Statistics page, scroll down, and then click Upload now. This should cause data to upload to Citrix Cloud and show up in Citrix Cloud License & Usage.
  4. Build 27000 has a new Dashboard page to replace the one in License Administration Console.

    1. Click the arrow next to a license to see when it expires and the number of licenses in use.
  5. If you click the gear icon on the top right…
  6. On the Account tab, you can add License Server Administrators.
  7. The Update Licenses tab lets you check for license renewals and download them.

Activate Citrix License

The easy way to install and activate a Citrix license is through Citrix Studio:

  1. In Citrix Studio, expand Configuration, right-click Licensing, and click Allocate Licenses.
  2. Enter the LA- license code, and click Show.
    • You can find your LA- code at http://mycitrix.com, click¬†All Licensing Tools, and click¬†View Licenses.
  3. Then click the Allocate licenses button.

    • Another method of allocating licenses is in the Citrix Licensing Manager at https://MyLicenseServer:8083¬†>¬†Install Licenses¬†tab.
  4. After licenses are installed, right-click the Licensing node, and click Edit Product Edition
  5. Change the edition to match your licenses. If you see both Virtual Apps and Virtual Desktops licenses, you must select Virtual Desktops. If you see both Concurrent and User/Device, then you must select User/Device. Click OK when done.
  6. Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops supports mixed licensing in a single site/farm. See the following:

License Server CEIP

Citrix Licensing Server enables CEIP by default. This can be disabled in the Citrix Licensing Manager (https://MyLicenseServer:8083) by clicking the gear icon.

Switch to the Usage and Statistics tab, and make a selection in the Share usage statistics with Citrix section.

Citrix License Management Service

Citrix Licensing Server includes the Citrix License Management Service. This service helps you avoid prohibited practices:

  • Duplication of licenses outside a Disaster Recovery (DR) environment
  • Use of legacy licenses for new product versions
  • Use of rescinded licenses

Citrix Licensing Server Monitoring

Citrix Licensing Server has historical usage reporting:

  1. Run Citrix Licensing Manager from the Start Menu. Or use a browser to connect to https://MyLicenseServer:8083
  2. On the Historical Use tab, use the drop-down menus to select a license type, select dates, and export to a .csv file.
  3. At the bottom of this page is a link to change the retention period.

Jonathan Medd Monitor Citrix License Usage With PowerShell.

Lal Mohan РCitrix License Usage Monitoring Using Powershell

Jaroslaw Sobel ‚Äď Monitoring Citrix Licenses usage ‚Äď Graphs using WMI, Powershell and RRDtool. This script generates a graph similar to the following:

Remote Desktop Licensing Server

Install Remote Desktop Licensing Server

Do the following on your Delivery Controllers:

  1. In Server Manager, open the Manage menu, and click Add Roles and Features.
  2. In the Installation Type page, select Role-based or feature-based installation.
  3. Click Next until you get to the Server Roles page. Check the box next to Remote Desktop Services, and click Next.
  4. Click Next until you get to the Role Services page. Check the box next to Remote Desktop Licensing, and click Next.
  5. Click Add Features if prompted.
  6. Then finish the wizard to install the role service.

Activate Remote Desktop Licensing

  1. After RD Licensing is installed, in Server Manager, open the Tool menu, expand Terminal Services (or Remote Desktop Services), and click Remote Desktop Licensing Manager.
  2. The tool should find the local server. If it does not, right-click All servers, click Connect, and type in the name of the local server.
  3. Once the local server can be seen in the list, right-click the server and click Activate Server.
  4. In the Welcome to the Activate Server Wizard page, click Next.
  5. In the Connection Method page, click Next.
  6. In the Company Information page, enter the required information, and click Next.
  7. All of the fields on the Company Information page are optional, so you do not have to enter anything. Click Next.
  8. In the Completing the Activate Server Wizard page, uncheck the box next to Start Install Licenses Wizard now, and click Finish. Since the session hosts will be configured to pull Per User licenses, there is no need to install licenses on the RD Licensing Server.
  9. In RD Licensing Manager, right-click the server, and click Review Configuration.
  10. Ensure you have green check marks. If the person installing Remote Desktop Licensing does not have permissions to add the server to the Terminal Server License Servers group in Active Directory, ask a domain admin to do it manually. If you have the proper permissions, click Add to Group.
  11. Click Continue when prompted that you must have Domain Admins privileges.
  12. Click OK when prompted that the computer account has been added.
  13. Click OK to close the window.

Citrix Scout

Delivery Controller includes Citrix Scout that can be launched from the Start Menu.

The tool can run a manual collection, run a trace, schedule periodic collection, or run a Health Check.

Health Check:

  1. When you select machines, it might tell you to enable PSRemoting.
  2. Winrm is usually not enabled on desktop machines. Login to the machine, open command prompt as administrator, and run¬†winrm quickconfig. It’s also possible to use Group Policy to enable winrm.
  3. Scout 1909 and newer lets you add a StoreFront machine. ūüí°
  4. Go back to Citrix Scout and click Continue.
  5. Click Start Checking.
  6. You can click View Details to view the issues it found.

Collect:

  1. The wizard is identical to the Health Check wizard, except there’s another screen to upload the data.

  2. If Citrix Cloud credentials, then you need to Generate a token.
  3. After logging into Citrix Cloud, copy the token.
  4. Go back to Citrix Scout and paste the token. Click Continue.
  5. Click Start Upload.
  6. Click View Analysis.

Links with more information:

Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Health Check

Sacha Tomet¬†Finally 1.0 ‚Äď but never finalized!:¬†XenApp & XenDesktop 7.x Health Check script has now Version 1.0.

Pavan900 posted a PowerShell-based Health Check script at Citrix Studi РColors for Maintenance Mode at Citrix Discussions.

Andrew Morgan – New Free Tool: Citrix Director Notification Service: The Citrix Director Notification service sits on an edge server as a service (or local to the delivery controller) and periodically checks the health of:

  • Citrix Licensing.
  • Database Connections.
  • Broker Service.
  • Core Services.
  • Hypervisor Connections.

And if any of these items fall out of bounds, an SMTP alert is sent to the mailbox of your choice for action. The tool will also send ‚ÄúAll Clear‚ÄĚ emails when these items are resolved, ensuring you are aware when the service has resumed a healthy state.

Matt Bodholdt XenDesktop 7.x Controller Service Status Script at CUGC – PowerShell script that checks the following:

  • Lists Controllers with boot time
  • Licensing status
  • Service status on each Controller
  • DB Connections
  • Controller Available Memory
  • Hypervisor Connections Status

Related Pages

Session Recording 1909

Last Modified: Nov 16, 2019 @ 7:51 am

Navigation

This article applies to Session Recording 1909, 1906, 7.15.5000 LTSR CU5, and 7.14. Session Recording 7.13 and older is a different article.

ūüí° = Recently Updated

Change Log

Planning

Citrix links:

Licensing – Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Platinum Edition or Premium Edition licensing is required.

Features –¬†CTX224231¬†Session Recording:Features by Version.

Farms – There is no relation between Session Recording farms and Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops farms. You can have Agents from multiple Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops farms recording to a common Session Recording server. Or you can split a Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops farm so that different Agents point to different Session Recording servers.

  • Load balancing – Session Recording 7.14 and newer can be load balanced. Build two Session Recording servers pointing to the same SQL database. Configure both of them to store recordings on the same UNC path. More details at¬†Configure Session Recording with load balancing at Citrix Docs.
    • Note: Load Balancing was removed from Session Recording 7.15 LTSR. In Session Recording 7.16 and newer, Load Balancing is fully supported.
  • Scaling – To scale Session Recording to 20,000 users, see Hal Lange and Ryan Revord at Scaling and Load Balancing Session Recording at CUGC.

Disk space – The Session Recording server will need a hard drive to store the recordings. Disk access is primarily writes. You can also store recordings on a UNC path (this is required if load balancing).

Offloaded content (e.g. HDX Flash, Lync webcam, MMR) is not recorded.

Certificate – Session Recording server needs a certificate. The certificate must be trusted by Agents and Players. Internal Certificate Authority recommended.

  • If load balancing, on the NetScaler, install a certificate that matches the load balanced name.
  • On each Session Recording server, install a certificate that matches the Session Recording server name.

SQL:

  • Supported Versions = SQL 2008 R2 Service Pack 3 through SQL 2016.
  • The SQL database is very small.
  • The database name defaults to¬†CitrixSessionRecording and can be changed.
  • A separate database is created for CitrixSessionRecordingLogging.
  • Temporary sysadmin¬†(or dbcreator and securityadmin) permissions are needed to create the database, and sysadmin can be revoked after installation.
  • SQL Browser Service must be running.
  • SQL Server High Availability (AlwaysOn Availability Groups, Clustering, Mirroring) is supported. See Install Session Recording with database high availability at Citrix Docs. And see Citrix Blog Post Session Recording 7.13 ‚Äď New HA and Database Options

Session Recording Versions

Session Recording is located on the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops or XenApp/XenDesktop ISO.

The most recent Current Release version of Session Recording is 1909, which is newer than 1906 and 7.18. Current Release is only supported for 6 months from release date, and you are expected to upgrade it every 3-6 months.

For a longer support term (LTSR), deploy 7.15.5000 LTSR instead.

Session Recording Server Upgrade

You can upgrade from Session Recording 7.6 and newer.

  1. If this is a new installation, skip to Install.
  2. If this server is Windows 2012 or newer, then go to the downloaded Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops (CVAD) or XenApp/XenDesktop ISO, and run AutoSelect.exe.
  3. If you see the Manage your delivery screen, click either Virtual Apps or Virtual Apps and Desktops. The only difference is the product name shown in the installers.
  4. On the bottom right, click the Session Recording box.
  5. In the Licensing Agreement page, change the selection to I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  6. In the Summary page, click Upgrade.
  7. Click OK to acknowledge that the upgrade cannot be cancelled.
  8. The installer might require a restart. Let it restart, and login again.

    1. After logging in, if you see a¬†Locate ‚ÄėCitrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7‚Äô installation media¬†window, don‚Äôt click anything in the window.
    2. Mount the Citrix_Virtual_Apps_and_Desktops_7_1909.iso file.
    3. Go back to the Locate media window. On the left, expand This PC, and click the DVD Drive. Then click Select Folder.
    4. Installation will resume. Repeat these steps if it asks you to reboot again.
  9. In the Finish page, click Finish.
  10. Also upgrade Broker_PowerShellSnapIn_x64.msi from \x64\Citrix Desktop Delivery Controller on the CVAD 1909 ISO.

Session Recording Server Installs

Install

  1. If this server is Windows 2012 or newer, go to the downloaded Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops or XenApp/XenDesktop ISO, and run AutoSelect.exe.
  2. If you see the Manage your delivery screen, click either Virtual Apps or Virtual Apps and Desktops. The only difference is the product name shown in the installers.
  3. On the bottom right, click the Session Recording box.
  4. In the Licensing Agreement page, change the selection to I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  5. In the Core Components page, uncheck the box next to Session Recording Player. The Player is typically installed on physical workstations, but not on the Session Recording server. Click Next.
  6. In the Features page, on the first Session Recording server, install everything.

    • On the second Session Recording server (if load balancing), only select¬†Session Recording Server. Click¬†Next.
  7. In the Database and Server page, fill out the fields. Enter the SQL server name. Enter the database name. Enter the domain\computer_account$ for the Session Recording server. Click Test connection. Each load balanced Session Recording server must point to the same database. Click Next.
  8. In the Administrator Logging Configurator page, enter the name of the SQL database, click Test connection, and then click Next.
  9. In the Summary page, click Install.
  10. The machine will probably require a reboot.

    1. After logging in, if you see a¬†Locate ‚ÄėCitrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7‚Äô installation media¬†window, don‚Äôt click anything in the window.
    2. Mount the Citrix_Virtual_Apps_and_Desktops_7_1909.iso file.
    3. Go back to the Locate media window. On the left, expand This PC, and click the DVD Drive. Then click Select Folder.
    4. Installation will resume. Repeat these steps if it asks you to reboot again.
  11. In the Finish page, click Finish.

Antivirus Exclusions

See Endpoint Security and Antivirus Best Practices at Citrix Tech Zone

IIS Certificate

  1. Use MMC Certificates snap-in (certlm.msc), or IIS, or similar, to request a machine certificate.
  2. In IIS Manager, right-click the Default Web Site, and click Edit Bindings.
  3. On the right, click Add.
  4. Change the Type to https.
  5. Select the certificate, and click OK.

Session Recording Server Configuration

  1. From Start Menu, run Session Recording Server Properties.
  2. In the Storage tab, specify a path that has disk space to hold the recordings. UNC is supported. If load balancing, UNC is required.

    1. When using a UNC path, all Session Recording servers (AD computer objects) need modify access.
    2. The share must have a subfolder. The recordings will be saved to the subfolder.
    3. In the Session Recording Server Properties tool, add the UNC path with subdirectory to the Storage tab.
  3. In the Signing page, select (Browse) a certificate to sign the recordings.
  4. In the Playback tab, notice that Session Recording files are encrypted before transmit. Also, it’s possible to view live sessions but live sessions are not encrypted.
  5. In the Notifications tab, you can change the message displayed to users before recording begins.

  6. The CEIP tab lets you enable or disable the Customer Experience Improvement Program.
  7. See https://www.carlstalhood.com/delivery-controller-cr-and-licensing/#ceip for additional places where CEIP is enabled.
  8. The Logging tab lets you configure Logging.
  9. When you click OK you’ll be prompted to restart the service.
  10. Session Recording relies on Message Queuing. In busy environments, it might be necessary to increase the Message Queuing storage limits. See¬†CTX209252¬†Error: “Data lost while recording file…” on Citrix SmartAuditor.


David Ott¬†Session Recording Cleanup Script: You may notice that the session recording entries/files don‚Äôt go away on their own. Here is how to clean them up.¬†Just create a scheduled task to run the code below once per day (as system ‚Äď elevated). See David’s¬†blog post for details.

C:\Program Files\Citrix\SessionRecording\Server\Bin\icldb.exe remove /RETENTION:7 /DELETEFILES /F /S /L

Also see CTX134777 How to Remove Dormant Files From a SmartAuditor Database.

Load Balancing

Note: Session Recording load balancing was removed from 7.15 LTSR but added back in 7.16 and newer.

  1. In SQL Server Management Studio, make sure each load balanced Session Recording server (AD computer account) is granted db_owner role in the Session Recording databases.
  2. On each Session Recording server, open regedit.
  3. Navigate to HKLM\Software\Citrix\SmartAuditor\Server.
  4. Create a new DWORD value named EnableLB and set it to 1. Repeat on both Session Recording servers.
  5. Configure NetScaler load balancing similar to the following:
    add server SR01 10.2.2.78
    add server SR02 10.2.2.139
    add serviceGroup svcgrp-Recording-SSL SSL -maxClient 0 -maxReq 0 -cip DISABLED -usip NO -useproxyport YES -cltTimeout 180 -svrTimeout 360 -CKA NO -TCPB NO -CMP YES
    add lb vserver lbvip-Recording-SSL SSL 10.2.5.215 443 -persistenceType SOURCEIP -timeout 60 -lbMethod LEASTBANDWIDTH -cltTimeout 180
    bind lb vserver lbvip-Recording-SSL svcgrp-Recording-SSL
    bind serviceGroup svcgrp-Recording-SSL SR01 443
    bind serviceGroup svcgrp-Recording-SSL SR02 443
    bind serviceGroup svcgrp-Recording-SSL -monitorName https
    bind ssl vserver lbvip-Recording-SSL -certkeyName WildcardCorpLocal
  6. The only special part is the Load Balancing Method set to LEASTBANDWIDTH (or LEASTPACKETS).
  7. Create a DNS host record that resolves to the Load Balancing VIP and matches the certificate bound to the vServer.
  8. Go to C:\Windows\System32\msmq\Mapping and edit the file sample_map.xml.
  9. Follow the instructions at Configure Session Recording with load balancing at Citrix Docs. Each Session Recording server has a unique configuration for this file since the <to> element points to the local server name.
  10. When saving the file, you might have to save it to a writable folder, and then move it to C:\Windows\System32\msmq\Mapping.
  11. Then restart the Message Queuing service on each Session Recording server.

Authorization

Authorization is configured separately on each load balanced Session Recording server.

  1. From the Start Menu, run Session Recording Authorization Console.
  2. Right-click the PolicyAdministrator role, expand Assign Users and Groups, click From Windows and Active Directory and then add your Citrix Admins group.
  3. If you use Director to configure Session Recording, add the Director users to the PolicyAdministrator role.
  4. In the Player role, add users that can view the recordings.
  5. By default, nobody can see the Administration Log. Add auditing users to the LoggingReader role.
  6. Repeat the authorization configuration on additional load balanced Session Recording servers.
  7. Session Recording has a Session Recording Administrator Logging feature, which opens a webpage to https://SR01.corp.local/SessionRecordingLoggingWebApplication/. Only members of the LoggingReader role can see the data.

Recording Policies

  1. Recording Policies can be configured to apply only specific Delivery Groups. To enumerate the Delivery Groups, on your Session Recording server, install Broker_PowerShellSnapIn_x64.msi, which is located under \x64\Citrix Desktop Delivery Controller on the CVAD ISO (e.g. CVAD 1909).

    • You’ll need to update this snap-in whenever you update CVAD.

  2. From the Start Menu, run Session Recording Policy Console.
  3. Enter the hostname of the Session Recording server, and click OK.
  4. Only one policy can be enabled at a time. By default, no recording occurs. To enable recording, right-click one of the other two built-in policies and click Activate Policy.
  5. Or you can create your own policy by right-clicking Recording Policies and clicking Add New Policy.
  6. After the policy is created, right-click it, and click Add Rule.
  7. Decide if you want notification or not, and click Next.
  8. Click OK to acknowledge this message.
  9. Choose the rule criteria. You can select more than one. Session Recording has an IP Address or IP Range rule.
  10. Then click the links on the bottom specify the groups, applications, servers, and/or IP range for the rule. Click Next.

  11. Give the rule a name, and click Finish.
  12.  Continue adding rules.
  13. When done creating rules, right-click the policy, and click Activate Policy.
  14. You can also rename the policy you created.

Recording Viewing Policies

Session Recording 1906 and newer support creating policies to limit whose recordings a viewer can see.

  1. On Session Recording servers 1909 and newer, open Session Recording Server Properties, switch to the tab named RBAC, and check the box next to Allow to configure recording viewing policies.

    1. Or, on the Session Recording servers version 1906, open regedit, browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\SmartAuditor\Server\, add the DWORD value PlayerUserRBACEnabledKey, and set it to 1.
  2. When you re-open the Citrix Session Recording Policy Console, you’ll see a new node named¬†Recording Viewing Policies.
  3. Right-click Recording Viewing Policies and click Add New Policy.
  4. Right-click the new policy and click Add Rule.
  5. In the Rules Wizard, specify a user group that can view recordings, specify user groups whose recordings can be viewed, and then click Next.

    • Make sure the “view recordings” group is also added to the Player role in the Authorization Console.
  6. Click Finish to close the wizard.
  7. You can right-click the Viewing Policy to rename it.
  8. Recording Viewing Policies do not need to be activated.
  9. You can create more than one Recording Viewing Policy.

Session Recording Agent

Agent Installation

Install the Agent on the VDAs. Platinum Licensing is required.

  1. On the Master VDA, go to the downloaded Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops or XenApp/XenDesktop ISO, and run AutoSelect.exe.
  2. If you see the Manage your delivery screen, click either Virtual Apps or Virtual Apps and Desktops. The only difference is the product name shown in the installers.
  3. On the bottom right, click the Session Recording box.
  4. In the Licensing Agreement page, change the selection to I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  5. In the Core Components page, uncheck everything except Session Recording Agent. Click Next.
  6. In the Agent page, enter the FQDN of the Session Recording server (or load balanced FQDN), click Test connection, and click Next.
  7. In the Summary page, click Install.
  8. In the Finish page, click Finish.
  9. Agent Installation can also be automated. See Automating installations at Citrix Docs.
  10. For antivirus exclusions, see Endpoint Security and Antivirus Best Practices at Citrix Tech Zone

Agent Configuration

  1. In the Start Menu is Session Recording Agent Properties.
  2. You can enable or disable session recording on this Agent.
  3. For MCS and PVS VDAs, see the GenRandomQMID.ps1 script at Install, upgrade, and uninstall Session Recording at Citrix Docs.
  4. Session Recording Agent might cause MCS Image Prep to fail. To work around this, set the Citrix Session Recording Agent service to Automatic (Delayed Start). Source = Todd Dunwoodie at Session Recording causes Image preparation finalization Failed error at Citrix Discussions.

Event Logging

Session Recording 7.17 and newer can automatically mark events in recordings when certain actions occur inside the session. An example event is when USB client drives are connected. Newer versions of Session Recording can record more events than older versions of Session Recording.

In Session Recording 1811 and newer, the Citrix Session Recording Policy Console has a new node named Event Logging Policies. Just like Recording Policies, you can add an Event Logging Policy, add a rule to the policy, and then activate the policy. Event monitoring settings can be enabled in this console instead of in the registry of each Session Recording Agent. Event Logging is disabled by default.

  1. Session Recording 1903 has more rules than Session Recording 1811. The more rules you configure in the console, the less registry keys are needed on the Session Recording Agents. More details at Event logging policies at Citrix Docs and Citrix Blog Post Session Recording 1903 available for Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops.
  2. Session Recording 1903 and later have Log browser usage events.

  3. After adding rules to an Event Logging Policy, make sure you Activate Policy.

In older versions of Session Recording, you enable Event recording by modifying the registry of each Session Recording Agent:

  1. Configure the following registry values at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\SmartAuditor\SessionEvents on the Session Recording Agent machine:
    • EnableAppLaunchEvents (DWORD) = 1
    • EnableCDMUSBDriveEvents (DWORD) = 1
    • EnableFileOperationMonitorEvents (DWORD) = 1
    • EnableGenericUSBDriveEvents (DWORD) = 1
    • EnableSessionEvents (DWORD) = 1
  2. Session Recording 7.18 and newer can mark recording events when specific processes are launched. This feature is disabled by default. To enable, set¬†EnableAppLaunchEvents at the same key. And put the list of processes in AppMonitorList. More details at Log application starts¬†at Citrix Docs and Citrix Blog Post¬†Session Recording 1808 Product Update ‚Äď Log application activities and more!.
    • EnableAppLaunchEvents (DWORD) = 1
    • AppMonitorList (REG_MULTISZ) = list of process names
  3. Session Recording 1811 and later can mark recording events when files in a folder are renamed, created, deleted, and moved. Add the path strings of target folders into the FileOperationMonitorList registry value. More details at Citrix Blog Post Session Recording 1811 is here for Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops.

When you later playback the recording, the events are shown on the bottom left.

  • Or you can perform an Advanced Search for recordings with specific event types.

Session Recording Web Player

Session Recording 1909 includes an experimental Web Player.

  1. Go to C:\Program Files\Citrix\SessionRecording\Server\Bin, right-click TestPolicyAdmin.exe and click Copy as path.
  2. Open Command Prompt as administrator, paste the path, add “-enablewebplayer” to the end, and press Enter.
  3. In IIS Manager, edit the bindings for the Default Web Site and ensure there’s an https binding.

    • The certificate’s Subject Alternative Names must include localhost.
  4. Go back to C:\Program Files\Citrix\SessionRecording\Server\Bin and edit the file SsRecWebSocketServer.exe.config.
  5. In line 3, set TLSEnable to 1.
  6. You need the Session Recording certificate in PEM format. One option is to use the openssl commands listed at Citrix Docs. Or you can use an ADC appliance’s¬†Import PKCS#12 feature to convert PFX to PEM.

    1. Make sure you don’t encrypt the private key (don’t select Encoding Format).
    2. After conversion (aka import), go to Traffic Management > SSL > SSL Files, switch to the tab named Certificates, and download the .pem file.
  7. Put the unencrypted .pem file somewhere on the Session Recording server.
  8. In the SsRecWebSocketServer.exe.config file, set line 11 and line 13 to the full path to the .pem file.
  9. In Administrator Command Prompt, run the following command:
    "C:\Program Files\Citrix\SessionRecording\Server\Bin\TestPolicyAdmin.exe" -stopwebsocketserver

  10. The Web Player WebSockets listens on port 22334 by default. Open the port on the firewall.

    1. Create an Inbound Rule. You can either create a Program rule, or a Port rule.
    2. The program path is %ProgramFiles%\Citrix\SessionRecording\Server\Bin\SsRecWebSocketServer.exe.
  11. From any machine, launch Chrome or Firefox and point it to https://myrecordingserver.corp.com/WebPlayer or something like that. Internet Explorer and Edge are not supported.

Session Recording Player

Install the Player on any Windows 7 through Windows 10 desktop machine. 32-bit color depth is required. Because of the graphics requirements, don’t run the Player as a published application.

  1. Go to the downloaded Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops or XenApp/XenDesktop ISO, and run AutoSelect.exe.
  2. If you see the Manage your delivery screen, click either Virtual Apps or Virtual Apps and Desktops. The only difference is the product name shown in the installers.
  3. On the bottom right, click the Session Recording box.
  4. In the Licensing Agreement page, change the selection to I have read, understand, and accept the terms, and click Next.
  5. In the Core Components page, uncheck everything except Session Recording Player. Click Next.
  6. In the Summary page, click Install.
  7. The installer might require a restart. Let it restart, and login again.

    1. After logging in, if you see a¬†Locate ‚ÄėCitrix Virtual Apps and Desktops 7‚Äô installation media¬†window, don‚Äôt click anything in the window.
    2. Mount the Citrix_Virtual_Apps_and_Desktops_7_1909.iso file.
    3. Go back to the Locate media window. On the left, expand This PC, and click the DVD Drive. Then click Select Folder.
    4. Installation will resume.
  8. In the Finish page, click Finish.
  9. From the Start Menu, run the Session Recording Player.
  10. Open the Tools menu, and click Options.
  11. On the Connections tab, click Add.
  12. Enter the FQDN of the Session Recording server (or load balanced FQDN).
  13. On the Cache tab you can adjust the client-side cache size. Click OK.
  14. Use the Search box to find recordings.
  15. Or you can go to Tools > Advanced Search.

  16. Once you find a recording, double-click it to play it.
  17. If you see a message about Citrix Client version incompatibility, see¬†CTX206145¬†Error: “The Session Recording Player Cannot Play Back This File”¬†to edit the Player’s SsRecPlayer.exe.config file to accept the newer version.
  18. To skip spaces where no action occurred, open the Play menu, and click Fast Review Mode.
  19. You can add bookmarks by right-clicking in the viewer pane. Then you can skip to a bookmark by clicking the bookmark in the Events and Bookmarks pane.

Director Integration

  1. On the Director server, run command prompt elevated (as Administrator).
  2. Run C:\inetpub\wwwroot\Director\tools\DirectorConfig.exe /configsessionrecording
  3. Enter the Session Recording FQDN (or load balanced FQDN) when prompted.
  4. Enter 1 for HTTPS.
  5. Enter 443 as the port.
  6. In Director, when you view users or machines, you can change the Session Recording policy. These policy changes don’t apply until a new session is launched.
  7. If the Session Recording menu says N/A, then the Director user needs to be authorized in the Session Recording Authorization Console.

  8. If you use Director to enable or disable recording for a user or machine, rules are added to the active policy on the Session Recording server. They only take effect at next logon.

Dynamic Session Recording

Session Recording 7.18, along with Delivery Controller 7.18, and VDA 7.18, allows you to start recording, even in the middle of a session.

Unfortunately, Director has not been enabled to take advantage of this feature. Instead, you use PowerShell to start recording. The command is Start-BrokerSessionRecording, and is detailed at Dynamically start or stop recording by using PowerShell commands in the Citrix Broker SDK at Citrix Docs. For example:

Start-BrokerSessionRecording -User DomainA \ UserA -NotifyUser $false

Use the Stop-BrokerSessionRecording command to stop recording when the reported issue has been triaged or resolved. For example:

Stop-BrokerSessionRecording -User DomainA \ UserA

The commands are logged to Citrix Studio Logging.