Windows 10 – Resource Utilization


Every 6 months, Microsoft releases a major update to Windows 10 (semi-annual channel). To be more precise, it is better to identify Windows 10 releases with version numbers (1503, 1511, 1607, 1703, 1709,  1803, 1809 and 1903).  The format is the year and month of the release, so 1503 is March 2015 and 1709 is September 2017. Microsoft provides ongoing support for the newest 3 versions. When Windows 10 (1803) was released, Windows 10 (1607) support ended. Since Microsoft is releasing new versions of Windows 10 on a semi-annual basis (every 6 months), the shelf life for a new Windows … Continue reading Windows 10 – Resource Utilization

Windows 10 End of Support Cycle


Let’s go through a typical conversation I end up having   Me: What version of Windows are you using on your desktop?  You: Windows 10 Me: What VERSION of Windows 10? You: Do you mean Pro or Enterprise? Me: No. What Windows 10 version number, like a build number? You: Build number? Who cares? I’m no  developer. It’s just Windows 10 Me: Au contraire mon capitan! There are 4 different Windows 10 versions, 5 as of October 17, 2017. You: WHAT? Me: And the first version no longer receives updates, with the second version stops in October of 2017 You: … Continue reading Windows 10 End of Support Cycle

Sizing Windows 2016, Windows 2012 and Windows 10 Virtual Machines


It has been almost one year since Windows Server 2016 was released at Microsoft Ignite. Are the virtual machine sizing recommendations for Windows Server 2012R2 applicable to Windows Server 2016? And since we are talking about sizing virtual machines for XenApp and XenDesktop, it might be a good time to revisit Windows 10.

Let’s first look at virtual CPU allocation recommendations: Continue reading “Sizing Windows 2016, Windows 2012 and Windows 10 Virtual Machines”

Sync the Windows 10 (1703) Start Menu in VDI


Even though it is still Windows 10, each release introduces changes that impacts our VDI deployment. We saw this with optimizing the operating system as we have different default apps, scheduled tasks and services. But what about the Start Menu? Synchronizing the Windows 10 Start Menu in VDI was the bane of many admin’s existence. And then we saw that we can use Citrix User Profile Management to capture the file at logoff. I’ve now upgraded to Windows 10 (Creators Update 1703). Guess what. Syncing the Start Menu just works with UPM. No special configuration except to turn UPM on. … Continue reading Sync the Windows 10 (1703) Start Menu in VDI

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