VDI Deployment Options


I enjoy having choices. I like having choices between Hefeweizen, Amber and Pale Ales. I like having a choice between playing Fallout, Mass Effect and Lego Star Wars. I like having a choice between mountain biking, tennis or hiking (yes, you can do all of these in the winter in Minnesota). I also have a choice in how to handle maintenance activities around my personal life. For example, I mow my own lawn, but I don’t change the oil in my car.  I don’t have the tools or skills needed to handle a car oil change, nor do I want … Continue reading VDI Deployment Options

PVS vs MCS – Part 1: Resource Delivery Options


This is part of a series comparing Provisioning Services and Machine Creation Services Part 1: Resource Delivery Options Part 2: Scalability Part 3: Storage Optimization Part 4: Deployment Part 5: On-going Maintenance Part 6: Architecture Part 7: Summary Five years ago, Citrix released Machine Creation Services.  As a way to help admins decide between Provisioning Services and Machine Creation Services, I created a decision tree, breaking the decision across multiple requirements. A lot has changed. Provisioning Services changed. Machine Creation Services changed. You know what didn’t change?  Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa and Maggie Simpson. You know what else hasn’t changed? … Continue reading PVS vs MCS – Part 1: Resource Delivery Options

Video Proof: Optimizing Microsoft Lync on XenApp and XenDesktop


I spent the last few blogs, dissecting Microsoft Outlook and how we can integrate an Exchange Online server, as part of Office 365, with XenApp and XenDesktop. Can I use a Cached Exchange Mode with XenApp and XenDesktop When to use Cached Exchange Mode with XenApp and XenDesktop How to use Cached Exchange Mode with XenApp and XenDesktop (I really need to be a little more creative with these titles) As we saw in these blogs, when you start deploying Office 365 to your users, Cached Exchange Mode becomes more important if you want a good user experience. But what … Continue reading Video Proof: Optimizing Microsoft Lync on XenApp and XenDesktop

Sizing XenDesktop 7 App Edition VMs


In the Mobilizing Windows applications for 500 users design guide, we made the recommendation to allocate 8vCPUs for each virtual XenDesktop 7 App Edition host (formerly known as XenApp). Spreading this out across a server with two Intel Xeon E5-2690 @2.9GHz processors and 192 GB of RAM, we were yielding about 200 users per physical server and roughly 50 users per virtual server. Of course, the design guide is the end result of a lot of testing by the Citrix Solutions Lab. During the tests, we had the Solutions Lab compare many (and I mean many) different configurations where they … Continue reading Sizing XenDesktop 7 App Edition VMs

Fun TechTalk on XenDesktop Enterprise Design


One of the best things about my position is I get to talk to a lot of smart people, do some pretty cool things (like playing around with the iPad), and constantly learn. For example, any idea why you would modify the “Maximum Transition Rate”? Do you even have an idea what it is? I learn about all of these things every day that helps in the overall XenDesktop architecture. I’ve come to realize that building a XenDesktop environment isn’t really that hard, but if you want to do it right so that it scales and is optimized, then you … Continue reading Fun TechTalk on XenDesktop Enterprise Design

Optimize Windows 7 Visual Effects for Virtual Desktops


Some of you might be aware, others might not.  Did you know that the mouse icon in Windows 7 (and earlier versions) has a shadow?  I bet a bunch of you are looking for it now. It is hard to see, but it is there.  Something that most people wouldn’t recognize as being on or off can have an impact on how much bandwidth is required for a virtual desktop.

Citrix XenDesktop and HDX are smart enough to not send the screen updates for the mouse image to the endpoint, instead they just send coordinates.  Saves a lot of time if you think about how many pixels the mouse takes.  But if you enable the mouse shadow (which is enabled by default), we are talking a different story.  The shadow pixel changes must be sent across the wire because it isn’t just a shadow, it is a blending with the image on the screen.  If you truly are interested in optimizing your Windows 7 desktop virtualization images, then disable the mouse shadow.

It’s pretty easy to do Continue reading “Optimize Windows 7 Visual Effects for Virtual Desktops”

Windows 7 Registry Optimizations for Virtual Desktops


In another blog, I discussed Windows 7 services that you might wish to disable when going down the path of desktop virtualization. In this article, I’m now focusing on registry modification you will want to make to optimize Windows 7 for virtual desktops. I’ve broken it down into Recommended configurations, Standard Mode configurations (for Provisioning services), and Optional configurations.

As I learn more from upcoming Windows 7 implementations, I’ll be updating the following tables, so it might be worthwhile to stay updated with RSS or subscribe via Email. Now, for the good stuff… Continue reading “Windows 7 Registry Optimizations for Virtual Desktops”