Tag Archives: xendesktop

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: Are you #$@% kidding me?

Even though Windows 10 has been available for over 2 years, many people are unaware of the servicing cycle of Windows 10, and it isn’t surprising. We’ve all been used to the Microsoft desktop OS cycle being measured in years. We would roll out Windows XP and thought nothing more about it for 5-10 years until it was time to move to Windows 7, wait 5-10 more years and move to Windows 10.

But with Microsoft turning Windows into a service, we must start measuring the Windows 10 cycle in terms of months and NOT years.  Look at the history of Windows 10.

Windows 10 Version Name Release Date Branch End of Servicing/Support Update Count
1507 Windows 10 July 29, 2015 CBB

LTSB

May 9, 2017

October 13, 2020

30

32 and counting

1511 November Update November 12, 2015 CBB October 10, 2017 37 and counting
1607 Anniversary Update August 2, 2016 CBB


LTSB

TBD (March 2018)

October 12, 2021

20 and counting

20 and counting

1703 Creator’s Update April, 11, 2017 CBB TBD (September 2018) 3 and counting
1709 Fall Creator’s Update October 17, 2017 Semi-Annual TBD (March 2019)
(TBD) 1803 March 2018 Semi-Annual TBD (September 2019)
(TBD) 1809 September 2018 Semi-Annual TBD (March 2020)
(TBD) 1903 March 2019 Semi-Annual TBD (September 2020)

For anyone using the CBB (Current Branch for Business), which is being renamed to Semi-Annual, we are able to skip 2 updates (that’s good) before reaching the end of servicing timeframe where we will no longer receive security fixes (that’s bad). And with each CBB/Semi-Annual release running on a roughly 6 month cadence (that’s good), this requires us to perform a major update every 18 months (that’s bad).

Each release provided significant improvements in the overall user experience.  We received new functionality, plugins for Edge. We had better performing apps, like Edge. We could integrate newer technologies, like IoT.  But each release changed the operating system by including new default apps, services and scheduled tasks; impacting user logon time and overall system resource consumption.

In order to follow best practices, we need to optimize appropriately to achieve the best combination of user experience and resource consumption.  Each time we have a major feature upgrade for Windows 10, we need to repeat our optimization

  1. Optimize default apps
  2. Optimize Windows services
  3. Optimize scheduled tasks
  4. Optimize user interface/runtime

Daniel (Follow on Twitter @djfeller)
Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 VDI Handbook
XenApp Best Practices
XenApp Video

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XenApp and XenDesktop Component Architecture Poster


Focusing on XenApp and XenDesktop for many years, I hear certain questions over and over again:

  • Do you have an conceptual architecture drawing for a XenApp and XenDesktop on-premises deployment?
  • How about a hybrid-cloud deployment?
  • What about the XenApp and XenDesktop Service in Citrix Cloud?
  • What does the logon/app enumeration flow look like?
  • What network ports do I need?

I’ve seen separate diagrams answering these questions, but they are usually buried in an appendix of a very long paper. I thought it would be nice to have a single source for this technical information, which is why I created the XenApp and XenDesktop Component Architecture Poster (PDF File).

Do you like?

And I’m already anticipating your next question: Can we have the source Visio file?

Of course! I just added them to the Citrix Workspace Visio Stencil.

Daniel (Follow on Twitter @djfeller)
Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 VDI Handbook
XenApp Best Practices
XenApp Video

Citrix Workspace Visio Stencils


The latest Visio stencils for the Citrix Workspace, including XenApp, XenDesktop, NetScaler, XenMobile, XenServer, ShareFile and Citrix Cloud.

Daniel (Follow on Twitter @djfeller)

Change Log

October 3, 2017:

  • Visio:
    • Added logon process diagram
    • Added app launch process diagram
    • Added on-premises port diagram
    • Added Citrix Cloud port diagram
    • Updated conceptual diagram for on-premises deployment
    • Updated conceptual diagram for hybrid-cloud deployment
    • Updated conceptual diagram for Citrix Cloud deployment

September 6, 2017

  • PowerPoint:
    • Added PowerPoint template with icons and Citrix Workspace diagrams

August 21, 2017

  • Visio

June 1, 2017

  • Visio
    • 7.14 Release: Added NetScaler MAS, NetScaler SD-WAN, NetScaler Gateway, and two Citrix Cloud services: XenApp & XenDesktop Service and XenMobile Service

February 28, 2017

  • Visio
    • 7.13 Release: Added Antivirus, PVS Accelerator. Updated XenServer, PVS, VM and Physical Server icons

December 7, 2016

  • Visio
    • 7.12 Release: Added Active Directory, Workspace Environment Management, Federated Authentication Service and Machine Catalog

February 23, 2016

  • Visio
    • 7.9 Release: Added Secure Browser, AppDisk, AppDNA and Provisioning Services

January 4, 2016

  • Visio
    • 7.7 Release: Added Personal and Shared Linux desktop, zone, App-V and Cloud Connector

June 24, 2015

  • Visio
    • 7.6 Release: Added Linux virtual desktop, receiver, GPU/vGPU and Driver icons

August 29, 2013

  • Visio
    • 7.5 Release: Updated entire stencil set with new style

January 23, 2013

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

Citrix Visio Stencils (August 2017)


Note: These stencils are outdated. Use the latest Citrix Workspace Visio Stencils.

I know I’ve blogged about updates to the Citrix Visio stencils in the past. It seems like every 3 months I post an update to the Visio stencils to include a few new icons for new components/functionality.

The August 2017 Visio stencil update is major. It is aligned with the Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 LTSR release.

Previously, most of the icons you saw, I created. I have little artistic talent, but I know how to draw circles, squares and rectangles.

We have a team within Citrix that creates our images and icons. I spent the last few months working with them on helping us create a new, standard set of icons. I must say, the output is wonderful.

Not only are there 144 icons, including this really cute penguin for Linux, I also included 6 different diagrams showing different levels of detail that you can use as a starting point. So, make sure you grab the latest Visio Stencils

Daniel (Follow on Twitter @djfeller)
Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 VDI Handbook
XenApp Best Practices
XenApp Video

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 updated 15 other sections. For example, we have content related to

  1. Cloud
  2. App Layering
  3. Windows 2016
  4. Local Host Cache
  5. Machine Creation Services
  6. Provisioning Services Accelerator
  7. Adaptive Display & Adaptive Transport
  8. And much, much, much, much, much more

A complete list of updates can be found at the end of the paper in the Revisions Table.

So grab a drink, find a comfy chair, sit back, relax and enjoy the Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 VDI Best Practices Handbook.

Daniel (Follow on Twitter @djfeller)
Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.15 VDI Handbook
XenApp Best Practices
XenApp Videos

 

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.

Just make sure you upgrade UPM to version 5.8, which was included with the XenApp and XenDesktop 7.14 release. If you use an older version of UPM, your start menu throws out an error.

It looks like the Start Menu is captured in the registry at HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\CloudStore.

Simply enabling UPM captures these registry value.

Now that is simple.

Daniel (Follow on Twitter @djfeller)
Citrix XenApp and XenDesktop 7.6 VDI Handbook
XenApp Best Practices
XenApp Video