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

SaaS and Web Apps in StoreFront


In a Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops deployment, many organizations use StoreFront to provide access to Windows and Linux applications and desktops.  A lesser know feature, published content, can let StoreFront publish links to SaaS and web applications in an attempt to bring all resources together into a single view. (I see the differences between SaaS and web apps as follows: SaaS apps are browser-based applications hosted by a 3rd party while a web app is a browser-based app hosted within the internal datacenter).  Unfortunately, SaaS/Web apps introduces some interesting challenges for users: SSO – Users must remember the username … Continue reading SaaS and Web Apps in StoreFront

Citrix VDI Handbook for XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15


Almost one year ago, I announced the availability of the Citrix VDI Best Practices Handbook for XenApp and XenDesktop 7.6 (that’s a really long title). Since then, I received many positive comments from many of you. Thank you. One of the goals I set was to release an updated version of the handbook for upcoming Long Term Service Releases (LTSR). And with the release of XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 LTSR, I’m happy to say that we achieved this goal. Matthew Brooks, Jeff Qiu and I updated the handbook to include new capabilities and recommendations. We added 30 new sections and … Continue reading Citrix VDI Handbook for XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15

Sync the Windows 10 Start Menu in VDI


NOTE: This is for Windows 10 builds before 1703.  Windows 10 1703 changes the storage location for the Start Menu. Learn more here

Windows 10 VDI. Of course it works. But one of the annoying things that really bothers me is not being able to customize my start menu.

My IT team created a standard start menu. It has 3 browsers, Paint.net, Notepad, Windows Media Player, plus much more stuff I never use.  I really, really, really want to customize this thing

So why can’t we roam the start menu between VDI sessions? Continue reading “Sync the Windows 10 Start Menu in VDI”

Optimize VDI: Windows 10 User Interface and Runtime (Original, Anniversary and Creator Updates)


This is a multi-part blog series focused on optimizing Windows 10 VDI

As we saw in previous blogs, Microsoft added new default apps, services and scheduled tasks into the base operating system of the Windows 10 Build 1703 (Creator Update). These updates will have an impact on the user experience, especially in a VDI implementation.

Continue reading “Optimize VDI: Windows 10 User Interface and Runtime (Original, Anniversary and Creator Updates)”

Optimize VDI: Windows 10 Scheduled Tasks


This is a multi-part blog series focused on optimizing Windows 10 VDI

As we saw in previous blogs, Microsoft added new default apps and services into the base operating system of the Windows 10 Build 1703 (Creator Update). These updates will have an impact on the user experience, especially in a VDI implementation.

Scheduled Tasks

Many of the new capabilities within the latest builds of Windows 10 also implements new scheduled tasks. Although the tasks do not run continuously, they will impact density when executing and many are irrelevant in a non-persistent VDI environment.

  • Build 1507: 130 Tasks
  • Build 1607: 166 Tasks
  • Build 1703: 165 Tasks
  • Build 1709: 173 Tasks
  • Build 1803: 173 Tasks

History has shown that optimizing Windows scheduled tasks can improve logon time and server density. It is recommended to review the list of scheduled tasks and disable those that are not necessary for the users.

To see a list of Windows services, run the following PowerShell command:
Get-ScheduledTask

Color Code:

  • Green: Customer experience program tasks
  • Orange: Maintenance tasks
  • Blue: Tasks for applications
  • Purple: General system tasks
  • Red: Safety and security tasks

Optimize VDI: Windows 10 Services


This is a multi-part blog series focused on optimizing Windows 10 VDI Part 1: Optimizing default apps Part 2: Optimizing Windows services Part 3: Optimizing scheduled tasks As we saw in a previous blog, Microsoft added new default apps into the base operating system with each major release of Windows 10. These updates will have an impact on the user experience, especially in a VDI implementation. Windows Services Many of the new capabilities with the latest builds of Windows 10 also implements new Windows services. With each release, the number of services has steadily increased. Build 1507: 196 Services Build … Continue reading Optimize VDI: Windows 10 Services