Mozilla Firefox 40.x Blocks GPU Acceleration for WebGL, Direct2D, DirectWrite with Citrix XenApp on Windows 2008R2/2012/2012R2

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in AMD, Citrix, Desktop Virtualization, End User Computing, GRID, GRID 2.0, HDX 3D, Intel, Microsoft, NVIDIA, RES Software, vDGA, VMware, vSphere, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012R2, Workspace Manager, XenApp, XenDesktop, XenServer

Mozilla Firefox 40.x Blocks GPU Acceleration for WebGL, Direct2D, DirectWrite with Citrix XenApp on Windows 2008R2/2012/2012R2

One of the great things about adding a GPU in a Citrix XenApp environment is that you can allow rich graphics and offload CPU and run your DirectX, OpenGL  applications on a XenApp server. In latest version of Mozilla Firefox WebGL, Direct2D, DirectWrite this have been disabled, so you can’t open webpages that uses these graphics in a Citrix XenApp session.

Symptoms or Error

If you open Mozilla Firefox 40.x and try to open a webGL website like http://madebyevan.com/webgl-water
this will not load anymore cause WebGL is default now disabled in Mozilla Firefox. Mozilla Firefox 40.x  blocks GPU acceleration for WebGL, Direct2D, DirectWrite in remote sessions on Windows Server operating systems.

2015-09-15_1553

To determine what content Firefox is blocking, run Firefox in your XenApp remote session and enter the address about:support into the browser address bar. In the section labelled “Graphics” you will see the following content disabled (as of Firefox version 40.0.3):

Direct2D Enabled             Blocked for your graphics card because of unresolved driver issues.
DirectWrite Enabled         false (6.3.9600.17999)
WebGL Renderer             Blocked for your graphics card because of unresolved driver issues.

2015-09-15_1555

Solution

The text “Blocked for your graphics card” is misleading as, in this case, it is not the specific graphics card but general Windows Server operating system remote sessions that are blocked. Mozilla’s published advice on how to override the graphics driver blocks also applies to XenApp sessions on workstation operating system (see bottom of this Mozilla Wiki – Blocklisting/Blocked Graphics Drivers).

Enable WebGL in Mozilla Firefox

In Mozilla Firefox entering the address about:config into the address bar and setting webgl.force-enabled=true will enable WebGL for XenApp on operating system (Server 2008R2/2012/2012R2)

webgl

 

You can double click on it and then it will become enabled. (with the value=true) and this is user set.
These settings can be change with a policy or with profile management such as RES Workspace Manager or others.

webgl-working

Now you can open the WebGL demo and the graphics will work

2015-09-15_1557

Enable DirectDraw2D

In Mozilla Firefox entering the address about:config into the address bar and setting gfx.direct2d.force-enabled=true will enable WebGL for XenApp on operating system (Server 2008R2/2012/2012R2)

direct2d

You can double click on it and then it will become enabled. (with the value=true) and this is user set.
These settings can be change with a policy or with profile management such as RES Workspace Manager or others.

direct2d-working

Enable DirectDraw2D

In Mozilla Firefox entering the address about:config into the address bar and setting gfx.font_rendering.directwrite.enabled=true will enable DirectWrite for XenApp on operating system (Server 2008R2/2012/2012R2)

directwrite

You can double click on it and then it will become enabled. (with the value=true) and this is user set.
These settings can be change with a policy or with profile management such as RES Workspace Manager or others.

directwrite-working

Users should be aware and note the caveats and warnings that Mozilla advises if taking this route to above settings for DirectWrite, Direct2D, WebGL

This issue only affects server operating system (example – Win 2012 R2 and Win 2008 R2) and XenApp.

How to force-enable blocked graphics features

If you would like to forcibly enable a graphics feature that is blocked on your system, follow these instructions. Warning: do this at your own risk. There usually are good reasons why features are blocked.

To force-enable WebGL, go to about:config and set webgl.force-enabled=true.

To force-enable WebGL anti-aliasing, go to about:config and set webgl.msaa-force=true.

To force-enable Layers Acceleration, go to about:config and set layers.acceleration.force-enabled=true.

On Windows Vista and Windows 7, to force-enable Direct2D Content Acceleration, go to about:config and set gfx.direct2d.force-enabled=true.

On Android, to force-enable StageFright software decoding, go to about:config and set stagefright.force-enabled=true.

On Windows, you can also spoof your graphics system information to help debug driver blacklisting issues (see bug 604771):

  1. Create spoofed-firefox.bat in the installation folder (e.g. C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox)
  2. Set the new values of spoofed variables ending with a command to launch Firefox:
    SET MOZ_GFX_SPOOF_WINDOWS_VERSION=60001
    SET MOZ_GFX_SPOOF_VENDOR_ID=0x8086
    SET MOZ_GFX_SPOOF_DEVICE_ID=0x0046
    SET MOZ_GFX_SPOOF_DRIVER_VERSION=8.15.10.2302
    “C:\Program Files (x86)\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe” -p -no-remote
  3. Double-click spoofed-firefox.bat and create a profile if required
  4. Click the Firefox button, then select Help, finally Troubleshooting Information and check the Graphics section.

If force-enabling a feature doesn’t work, that probably means that your hardware doesn’t support it. For example, layers acceleration currently requires support for 4Kx4K textures, which rules out some graphics cards, like the Intel G31/G33.

Source

Firefox article

http://support.citrix.com/article/CTX202065 (credits to Rachel Berry for writing this CTX article)

Another great blogpost to read about this subject is my friend / CTP fellow Barry Schiffer http://www.barryschiffer.com/citrix-hdx-3d-pro-and-nvidia-grid-browser-experience/ He was the guy who wrote a great blogpost with some very interesting results on performance tuning Mozilla Firefox in a XenApp/XenDesktop session.

 

NVIDIA GRID 2.0

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in 8.1, Citrix, DirectX 12, FrameHawk, GRID, GRID 2.0, HDX 3D, HDX 3D Pro, Maxwell, Microsoft, NVIDIA, Server 2012R2, vDGA, vGPU, View, VMware, vSphere, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012R2, XenApp, XenDesktop, XenServer

Nvidia grid 2.0 2x

NVIDIA GRID 2.0

NVIDIA have released the next generation of GRID 2.0. GRID 2.0 is based on the Maxwell architecture and the GRID 1.0 (K1/K2) was based on the Kepler architecture. I have been working with the GRID 1.0 technology since 2012 and it have matured alot in its 2 years of history. When the K1/K2 was released they was first working with GPU pass-through and then vGPU got introduced and you could virtualize the GPUs and increase density, which people wanted. Citrix was with their hypervisor the first company that supported NVIDIA GRID 1.0 and they was also the first company integrating vGPU into their Citrix Studio, so companies could easier provisioning machines with either MCS technology or PVS technology. VMware supported GRID 1.0 vGPU technology in 2015 in their hypervisor VMware vSphere 6.0 and fully integrated with their EUC stack VMware View, so companies can fully provisioning machines. The great thing about GRID 2.0 is that there is no need for a conversation when to choose either a K1 or a K2, if you required GPU compute or GPU framebuffer, M60 are being added to the tope end of the range  and bringing 2x the performance, and if you have bladeserver’s, you can add the powerfull vGPU technology into the bladeserver’s with the M6.

Please notice that M6 will 0nly be supporting newer architecture of vendors not old platforms.

Maxwell architecture

Maxwell architecture is the new architecture of GPUs and a powerful GPU you might know is the Titan X

New GPUs GRID 2.0 and specifications

In GRID 2.0 NVIDIA now have a GPU for blade servers a MXM single socket, High-end GPU called M6

In GRID 2.0 NVIDIA replaces K1/K2 with the new PCIe 3.0 Dual Socket, Dual High-end GPU called M60
The M60 delivers 4096 CUDA or compute and 16GB GDDR5 memory/framebuffer

The M60 has 6x the h.264 encoders of the K2, and also Maxwell supports 4:4:4 chroma sub sampling, which is great news for encoders.

maxwell_grid

Certified GRID 2.0 servers

Click the link to see which servers are certified for M60 and M6
http://www.nvidia.com/object/grid-certified-servers.html

M6 have following servers supported:

m6 certifiedM60 have following servers supported:

m60 certificed

vGPU software editions and license

nvidiagrid20licensemodel

NVIDIA GRID 2.0 software is available in three editions that deliver accelerated virtual desktops to support the needs of your users. These editions include Virtual PC, Virtual Workstation, and Virtual Workstation Extended. GRID perpetual licenses are sold by Concurrent User (CCU).

NVIDIA GRID 2.0 (CCU) stands for ConCurrent User. So basically, per running VM as regardless of whether the user is connected to the VM or not, the VM is connected to the GPU and so consumes a license

NVIDIA GRID 2.0 software is much more than a “driver”. While the software package does include a guest driver for Windows and Linux, it also includes the NVIDIA GRID vGPU manager for VMware vSphere and Citrix XenServer, as well as the license server and M6/M60 mode switching utility.

NVIDIA Tesla M6 and M60 profiles are specific to the M6 and M60. There will be similar profiles as to what NVIDIA had on K1 and K2 (512 MB through 4 GB), all with twice the number of users on M6/ M60 compared to K1/K2. Plus, there is an additional 8 GB profile on M6/M60 which also adds support for CUDA, which wasn’t available on K1/K2.

NVIDIA GRID 2.0 is Maxwell only. If you are an existing customer K1/K2 are unchanged and will remain as a parallel option.

nvidiagrid20licensemodel 2

 

nvidiagrid20licensemodel 3

The NVIDIA GRID 2.0 solution

nvidiagrid20

Summary

GA of NVIDIA GRID 2.0 (M60 and M6) will be 15 September 2015.

To get NVIDIA GRID 2.0 if you are a Citrix customer you need:
Server hardware that supports NVIDIA GRID 2.0 +NVIDIA GPU M60 or M6 + NVIDIA vGPU Software license + Citrix XenDesktop or XenApp License (XenServer is included in XD/XA licenses)

To get NVIDIA GRID 2.0 if you are a VMware customer you need:
Server hardware that supports NVIDIA GRID 2.0 +NVIDIA GPU M60 or M6  + NVIDIA vGPU Software license + VMware Horizon license (Horizon includes vSphere for Desktop)

If you are a Citrix customer that wants to run on VMware vSphere you need:

Server hardware that supports NVIDIA GRID 2.0 + NVIDIA GPU M60 or M6 + NVIDIA vGPU Software license + Citrix XenDesktop or XenApp License + VMware vSphere Enterprise Plus license or vSphere for Desktop license

Source

Mac Client Printer Mapping Fix for Citrix XenDesktop/XenApp 7.6

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in Best Practise, Citrix, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012R2, XenApp, XenDesktop

Mac Client Printer Mapping Fix for Citrix XenDesktop/XenApp 7.6

Hi all

If you have users that have a Apple Mac OSX device such as (iMac, Macbook, Macbook Pro) then this article might be interesting for you. I am helping many clients around the world and I often see more companies adapting Apple OSX devices. Specially SMB and Enterprises are adapting Apple Macbook products these days cause they are powerfull computers and have some of the best design and reliability. Many companies have no other option to adapt Apple OSX devices, so they attract the right talented employee, which are requesting this device if they want to work at the company, and you think this is funny then welcome to reality, Apple is back and more powerful than before. The good news is that Citrix can help with this and bring any app to work on these devices and secure the workspace with the Citrix Receiver where the user connect to a central and secure solution. The challenge comes when the user have local printers to their mac device and now tell IT they want to print from their Citrix session.

In latest release of Citrix XenDesktop, XenApp 7.6 if your users on Mac OSX devices, wants to use local printers and then connect to their remote Citrix VDI (Windows 8/8.1) or XenApp (Server 2012/2012R2) and then print, this is not going to work. Before this article got released users would only be able to get local printing working  to a Windows 7 VDI or a XenApp server running Server 2008R2.

If you have users running pure Windows Computers, then you are not going to run into this issue with getting local printers to work with a Citrix environment running Windows 7/8/8.1, Server 2008R2/2012/2012R2.

In Citrix XenDesktop 7.6, default policies are set to map all client printers, so you dont have configure this policy.

Summary if you have a Mac device and Citrix Receiver and local printers installed on your Mac, now you want to accomplish connecting to your VDI (Windows 8/8.1) XenApp (Windows Server 2012/2012R2) then you are going to fail, do below and you succeed.

Solution:

(how to get local printers to work on a Apple OSX computer with Citrix Receiver to a XenDesktop/XenApp 7.6 environment running Windows 8/8.1 or Server 2012/2012R2)
  1. On the desktop you want to configure, open Control Panel > View Devices and Printers.
  2. Select any Printer, for example Microsoft XPS Document Writer.
  3. Click Print server properties, as displayed in the following screen shot:
    User-added image
  1. Select Drivers tab.
  2. Click Add > Next.
  3. Choose Processor Architecture, click Next.
  4. Select Windows Update.
  5. Select Manufacturer ‘HP’ and Printers ‘HP Color LaserJet 2800 Series PS’ (if there are two versions of this driver displayed, choose the Microsoft version)
  6. Click NextFinish.
  7. Now connect or reconnect to your Citrix XenApp session running (Server 2012/2012R2) or Citrix XenDesktop VDI session running (Windows 8/8.1) then your local printers will be mapped in Citrix session and you can print.

Have fun.

/Poppelgaard

Citrix technology professional – CTP, and Microsoft Most Valuable Professional MVP, Thomas Poppelgaard provides professional services. Write to me on my email thomas@poppelgaard.com or call on my cell +45 53540356

Source

CTX139020

NVIDIA GRID vGPU 346.68-348.27

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in Citrix, GRID, HDX 3D, HDX 3D Pro, Horizon, Microsoft, NVIDIA, Server 2012R2, vGPU, View, VMware, vSphere, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012R2, XenApp, XenDesktop, XenServer

NVIDIA GRID vGPU 346.68-348.27

NVIDIA have released a new GRID Virtual GPU Manager 346.68 for Citrix XenServer 6.5 and VMware vSphere 6.
NVIDIA have in this release also released Windows drivers for vGPU 348.27

Important:

The GRID Virtual GPU Manager 346.68 is not updated in this release, its only the Windows drivers for vGPU 348.27
If you have GRID Virtual GPU Manager 346.68 installed in either XenServer or VMware you only need to update your VMs.

The GRID vGPU Manager and Windows guest VM drivers must be installed together.

Older VM drivers will not function correctly with this release of GRID vGPU Manager. Similarly, older GRID vGPU Managers will not function correctly with this release of Windows guest drivers.

 

What is fixed in Windows driver for vGPU 348.27 VM using Citrix XenServer 6.5

346.68_-_xenserver_fix

What is fixed in Windows drivers for vGPU 348.27 VM using VMware vSphere 6

346.68_vSphere_fix

 

Source

Download NVIDIA GRID vGPU 346.68-348.27 for Citrix XenServer 6.5 here

Download NVIDIA GRID vGPU 346.68-348.27 for VMware vSphere 6 here

Citrix XenDesktop & XenApp 7.6 Feature Pack 2

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in Citrix, End User Computing, FrameHawk, HDX, HDX 3D, HDX 3D, HDX 3D Pro, HTML5, Linux, Linux Virtual Desktop, Microsoft, Receiver, StoreFront, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2012R2, XenApp, XenDesktop

Citrix XenDesktop & XenApp 7.6 Feature Pack 2

Citrix released Feature Pack 2 for Citrix XenDesktop & Citrix XenApp.

What’s new in Feature Pack 2 for Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 and XenApp 7.6

The Feature Pack 2 release includes the following new and enhanced features.

StoreFront 3.0

StoreFront includes the following new features and enhancements.

  • Unified Receiver provides modern, centrally-managed and customizable user app selection experience across all user devices.
  • Google Chrome Support without NPAPI.
  • Delegating Authentication to XenApp and XenDesktop when there is no AD trust between sites.
  • Treat All Desktops as Applications to apply Workspace Control and group icons together.
  • Integrated Monitoring Service enables NetScaler to monitor StoreFront.
  • Extended Store Customization SDK for business logic.

Updated StoreFront management console

Support for the unified Receiver experience — StoreFront 3.0 delivers centralized customization and branding of your end users’ applications and desktop selection experience to Receiver users. Your company can customize the interface to reflect your logo, colors, and so forth. Some of the new Receiver and StoreFront features:

  • Simplified application organization — Familiar and consistent application selection experience for use.

Featured app groups. Administrator configured applications that are logically grouped and advertised to users in the applications selection experience.

Folder view of applications. Return of Web Interface functionality in StoreFront.

Favorites. Easily add or remove applications to Favorites for quick access.

  • Server-managed user experience — Application selection experience is server configured.

Change once, deploy everywhere. User application selection experience changes are made by the administrator on StoreFront server.

Consistent application selection experience for user. Any device running Receiver receives its application selection experience from the server as HTML5, providing for consistency as users move across smartphones, tablets, and desktop form factors.

Decouple the application selection experience from Receiver capabilities. Client upgrade without end user training or user experience impact; Support legacy user experience without legacy client cost.

  • Fit for purpose user experience customization options — You select the appropriate level of customization.

Updated out-of-the-box user experience. Modernized end user application selection look-and-feel.

Server-configured branding customizations. You brand with corporate logos, color, and featured application groups.

Deeper customization and branding options. CSS and script APIs available to enable deeper levels of customization.

Use the StoreFront management console to do the following Receiver related tasks:

Set Receiver for Web as the default for the store.

Create a Receiver for Web website.

Change website type.

Customize the website appearance.

See the Support for Receiver for Web article.

  • Featured app groups management — App groups are groups of applications that are related or fit in a specific category making them more easily discoverable. With Studio and the StoreFront management console you can define app groups using keywords, application names, or categories.

See the Create and manage featured apps article.

XML service-based authentication.

You can configure StoreFront to use the XenApp and XenDesktop XML Service to authenticate the user name and password credentials where a user explicitly provides a user name and password.  Use PowerShell cmdlets to enable and disable this feature. For more information, see XML service-based authentication.

Support for HDX Real-Time Optimization Pack 1.8

HDX RealTime Optimization Pack includes the following new features and enhancements.

  • Support for the Microsoft Skype for Business client in Lync UI mode, the Microsoft Lync 2013 client, and the Microsoft Lync 2010 client.
  • Support for the Lync Server 2013 Autodiscover Service.
  • Call Park and Call Pick Up in Lync 2010 client.
  • Call forwarding and simultaneous ringing controls for Lync 2010 client
  • Support for Mac.
  • Kerberos authentication.
  • Plus (+) symbol in the dial pad.
  • Support for the Microsoft Windows 10 technical preview.

For information, see HDX RealTime Optimization Pack 1.8.

Session Recording

Session Recording includes the following new features and enhancements.

  • You can specify the connection credentials to the database when installing the Session Recording Database component.
  • You can test the connectivity of database during the installation of the Session Recording Database and Session Recording Server components and test the connectivity of the Session Recording Server during the installation of Session Recording Agent component.
  • Microsoft Shared Management Objects is no longer requirement for Session Recording Database installation.
  • Citrix Experience Improvement Program (CEIP) is integrated in Session Recording. For more information, see About the Citrix Customer Experience Improvement Program.

For more information, see Session Recording – for XenApp 7.6 FP1 and FP2 only.

Linux Virtual Desktop

You can now create Linux virtual desktops based on SUSE and Red Hat distributions. Prepare your Linux virtual machines, install the new Linux VDA software on them, configure your Delivery Controller, and then use Studio to make the desktops available to users. For more information, see the following documents.

Installation guide for SUSE

Installation guide for Red Hat

Framehawk Virtual Channel

Framehawk is a new ICA virtual channel that extends Citrix HDX technologies, a set of capabilities that work together to deliver a high-definition user experience of virtual desktops and applications.

The Framehawk virtual channel optimizes the delivery of virtual desktops and applications to users on broadband wireless connections. It is ideal for mobile devices under lossy network connections. With Framehawk integrated into the industry-leading HDX technology, Citrix provides a smooth and intuitive user experience in conditions where remote workspace users previously experienced poor interactivity, such as on wireless connections with high packet loss or congestion.

For more information, see the following document.

Administrator guide

Director 7.6.300

This version of Director supports the Framehawk virtual channel. You can display HDX graphics information, which lets you monitor and troubleshoot any session that uses the channel.

Source

Download Citrix XenDesktop 7.6 Feature Pack 2 here (requires MyCitrix ID)

Download Citrix XenApp 7.6 Feature Pack 2 here (requires MyCitrix ID)

Download Citrix Storefront 3 here (requires MyCitrix ID)

Download Director 7.6.300 here

Download Session Recorder here (requires MyCitrix ID)

Download HDX Realtime Optimization Pack 1.8 here (requires MyCitrix ID)

Download Citrix Linux Virtual Desktops here (requires MyCitrix ID)

Download HDX with Framework here

FYI – Remember to update your hot fixes to latest level for Studio, GPO, VDA, download the hot fixes here

 

 

 

Recent Comments

Alex

|

So how come version 3.11 doesn’t work for application switching?

John

|

Hello, how to allow SR-IOV for the Intel P580 in a m710x? (unable to find any settings in BIOS)

I get the following error: Dismount-VmHostAssignableDevice : The operation failed.
The device cannot be assigned to a virtual machine as the firmware (BIOS or UEFI) on this host computer system indicates that the device must remain in
contact with the firmware running in the host. The device can only be used in the management operating system. You should contact your OEM to determ
ine if a firmware upgrade is available, or if the PCI Express device can be reconfigured to be independent of the host firmware.

Aza

|

Great article Thomas.

Can you tell more about the difference in user density between M510 and M710x?
Citrix published an article with a LoginVSI test related to the M510 9https://www.citrix.com/blogs/2016/06/30/we-choose-to-go-to-the-moon/), but I’m more interested in the M170x because of its Iris Pro P580.

Olivier

|

Thank you! Thats the solution i needed.