AMD Radeon Pro Software for Enterprise 18.Q3.1

AMD have released an important new driver for their AMD Radeon Pro GPUs in October 2018.

This release is fixing many major issues that AMD had with Citrix Virtual Apps & Desktops (aka XenDesktop), I am very happy to see that the engineers inside AMD worked hard and now everything is working out of the box and no “tweak” have to be done to get it working. The drivers works both with a physically machine with Radeon Pro + Citrix Virtual Apps & Desktops (aka XenDesktop) or with a Virtual machine where the AMD Radeon Pro GPU are attached as GPU passthrough or sliced via SR-IOV with S7150/S7150x2 with Citrix Virtual Apps & Desktops (aka XenDesktop). I have tested the drivers in my lab with AMD Radeon Pro WX4100 + S7150 and S7150x2 and I can confirm that AMD have fixed below, which is important. I haven’t tested with VMware Horizon yet.

The Radeon™ Pro Software for Enterprise is designed to deliver market-leading uptime and stability. Rigorous multi-wave testing and exhaustive ISV certifications help make this “the industry’s most stable driver”1.  Radeon™ Pro Software is certified in over 100 workstation applications including Autodesk® AutoCAD®, Dassault Systèmes® CATIA®, Siemens NX™, Adobe® Premiere® Pro, Avid® Media Composer®, Autodesk® Maya®, PTC Creo® and many more

Built to help content creators make the best, every Enterprise Edition is designed to deliver more quality, performance, security, and simplicity

Lets Dig in why this is important.

Fixed Issues in 18.Q3.1

  • Locked Clock Speed with AMD Radeon™ Pro WX 7100 may be seen.
  • Dassault Systèmes® Solidworks® 2018 may crash at Customer Site while applying service metal fabrications.
  • “19.Light.vpb” file may show issues while rendering with Autodesk® VRED.
  • Application launching issues with Siemens NX™ 12.0.2 may be observed.
  • Some Viewport Corruption may be seen with Blender®.
  • Some issues may be observed with SPECapc™ Solidworks® 2015.
  • Solid Color Outputting may be seen on display using Specific DP 1.2 to HDMI 2.0 Dongle.
  • Dassault Systèmes® Solidworks® 2018/2017 may stop responding after rotating or changing display style on Windows® 7.
  • DXGI window mode stereo in Stereo 3D may only show left eye image when enabling active/passive stereo in Radeon™ Pro Settings on Windows® 10 RS4.
  • Application may stop responding while using ‘sliced geometry’ feature in Notch.
  • Corruption may be seen on model with change in Anti-aliasing modes with Dassault ICEM Surf™.
  • Display issues may be observed while running Nuke benchmark on AMD FirePro™ W8100 and AMD FirePro™ W9100.
  • Unexpected behaviour may be observed when running Intergraph SmartPlant FreeView on AMD FirePro™ 7150 with Citrix® XenDesktop®.
  • Toggling between full screen and windowed mode on Citrix® XenDesktop® may lead to temporary viewport corruption.
  • On Windows® 7, a Catalyst Control Center error may be observed when resizing Citrix® XenDesktop® window.

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Display adapter priority and monitor creation in Citrix sessions

Citrix have created this very important knowledge article CTX237608 about GPUs in Citrix from release 7.16 and forward.

This article is valid for following Citrix products:

  • Citrix XenDesktop 7.16 using Microsoft Windows 10
  • Citrix XenDesktop 7.17 using Microsoft Windows 10
  • Citrix XenDesktop 7.18 using Microsoft Windows 10

(IDD) Indirect Display Driver model was introduced in Microsoft Windows 10 and Citrix is now using this technology.
https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-hardware/drivers/display/indirect-display-driver-model-overview 

I experienced myself an issue with an AMD Radeon WX4100 GPU having a black screen or desktop “freezes” at login and by adding CitrixIDD registry key I got it working. Other GPUs may be impacted so please test. Please be aware that with implementing Citrix IDD you loose vendor specific (control panel) settings, because Citrix bypass the GPU vendor capture APIs and you will have less performance resulting in less FPS. But I have experience myself that performance works amazing with enabling CitrixIDD and it solved my issue with a black screen/desktop that froze.

Update 29 August 2018
Its recommended getting a native driver from the GPU vendor instead of using Citrix IDD to get the best performance the GPU vendors provide via their APi.

Below is relevant for Citrix customers

  • Connecting with HDX to machines provisioned manually or MCS or PVS to a virtual Microsoft Windows 10 with Citrix Client OS VDA 7.16 and above.
  • Connecting with HDX using Citrix RemotePC to a physically PC with Microsoft Windows 10 and Citrix Client OS VDA 7.16 and above.

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Citrix XenDesktop 7.11 and XenApp 7.11

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Citrix have released a new version of Citrix XenDesktop 7.11 and XenApp 7.11 and is now available for download.

Citrix raises the bar of for user experience and new product release of following technologies

  • Virtual Delivery Agents 7.11 for ServerOS and ClientOS
  • AppDNA 7.11
  • Storefront 3.7
  • Provisioning Services 7.11
  • Profile Management 5.5
  • License Server 11.14
  • Citrix Receiver 15.0 for Windows
  • HDX RealTime Optimization Pack 2.1.1 for Microsoft Skype® for Busines
  • Citrix SCOM Management Bundle for XenApp and XenDesktop (2016_08_24)
  • Linux Virtual Delivery Agent 1.4
  • Tech preview for HTML5 redirection

This release is an important release no matter if you are working daily with Office application such as Excel, Word or Browsers and even highend applications such as CAD. The features in 7.11 have important improved user experience from the VDA to the Receiver that improves dramtically the user experience. NVIDIA NVENC technology is now part of VDA and supports even multiple monitors. The admin can now monitor RTT within Director this feature have been something I have asked for very long time and now finally its in the product, customer will love this new feature so its fast to see where the issue is in a infrastructure with which users that have latency issues. Version 7.11 is the release that fully supports Microsoft Windows Server 2016 that is soon GA, this means you can install Delivery components on Windows Server 2016, VDA on Server 2016, use Azure N-series with support for Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V Discrete Device Assignment (DDA) or you can use it onpremises with Hyper-V. Support for UWP is HUGE and I am very excited about this technology and this also used in Microsoft Hololens so cant wait to a Receiver for hololens so you can publish UWP apps to Hololens 😉 Imagine that. I can keep going on with all these new features lets dig in below and learn whats new, its incredible that Citrix raises the bar and comes with huge improvements and they this each 3 months 🙂 yes each 3months, you read it correct. If you dont have a plan for this in your company I highly recommend you build a strategy on how you upgrade you Citrix environment frequently to get these awesome new features.

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Citrix XenDesktop 7.8 and Citrix XenApp 7.8

citrixxendesktopandxenapp78

Citrix have released a new version of Citrix XenDesktop 7.8 and XenApp 7.8 and is now available for download.

Citrix raises the bar of for user experience and new product release for Storefront 3.5, Provisioning Services 7.8, Citrix Receiver 12.1.10 for Mac (OSX), License Server 11.13.1.2 for Windows, XenApp Secure Browser Deployment Kit, AppDNA 7.8, Session Recording 7.8.

This is WILD Citrix released 7.7 in 30th December 2015 with so many features and already two months after we got a major release out.. If you havent upgraded your 7.x environment 7.8 is worth a try.

HINT! – Remember first thing you do is downloading the new version of Citrix License Server 11.13.1.2 cause this is a requirement for below products to work.

Lets look at the build Citrix XenDesktop 7.8 and Citrix XenApp 7.8

The product release includes the following new and enhanced features.

  • AppDisks For more information, see the AppDisks article.
  • Enhanced support for Microsoft Application Virtualization  (App-V) App-V article.
  • Applications node in Studio For more information, see the Manage applications and Create Delivery Groups articles.
  • Updated Create Delivery Group wizard and Edit Delivery Group interface  For more information, see the Create Delivery Groups and Manage applications articles.
  • Improved tag interface in Studio For more information, see the Tags article.
  • Requirements, installation, and configuration updates
  • Call Home Citrix Call Home  performs periodic collections of your system and product configuration, plus performance, error, and other information. This information is sent to Citrix Insight Services for proactive analysis and resolution For details, see the Citrix Insight Services article.
  • Citrix Insight Services link available from within Director You can access Citrix Insight Services (CIS) from the User drop-down in Director to access additional diagnostic insights. The data available in CIS comes from sources including Call Home and Citrix Scout.
  • VMware SSL thumbprint The VMware SSL thumbprint feature addresses a frequently-reported error when creating a host connection to a VMware vSphere hypervisor. Previously, administrators had to manually create a trust relationship between the Delivery Controllers in the Site and the hypervisor’s certificate before creating a connection. The VMware SSL thumbprint feature removes that manual requirement: the untrusted certificate’s thumbprint is stored on the Site database so that the hypervisor can be continuously identified as trusted by XenApp and XenDesktop, even if not by the Controllers. When creating a vSphere host connection in Studio, a dialog box allows you to view the certificate of the machine you are connecting to. You can then choose whether to trust it.

Virtual Delivery Agents (VDAs) 7.8

Version 7.8 of the VDA for Server OS and the VDA for Desktop OS include the following enhancements:

  • App-V and Framehawk installer options. The VDA installers offer two additional items you can select on the Features page in the graphical interface or specify on the command line.

Framehawk. Opens UDP ports 3224-3324. Framehawk uses a bidirectional UDP port range (default is 3224-3324) to exchange Framehawk display channel data with Citrix Receiver. For more information, see Framehawk virtual channel.

Citrix App-V Publishing Components. Installs components required if you will use applications from Microsoft App-V packages. For more information, see App-V.

  • HDX 3D Pro product edition availability. HDX 3D Pro is now available in the VDA for Windows Desktop OS in all XenApp 7.8 and XenDesktop 7.8 product editions. In earlier releases, only certain product editions supported the 3D Pro VDA. HDX 3D Pro is not currently supported on Windows 10.
  • KACD .MSI file included in VDA packages. This file is included to support future customization of authentication. This file was not included with earlier releases.

HDX technologies

The following new and enhanced HDX technologies features are included in the VDAs:

  • Framehawk support for HDX 3D Pro VDI. HDX 3D Pro support for the Framehawk virtual channel is extended from XenApp to XenDesktop VDI. This gives users greater flexibility to view large CAD models while on the move on a corporate or public wireless network, or working from an offshore location over a high latency connection. For more information on Framehawk, see Framehawk virtual channel.
  • Framehawk server scalability improvements. Over 40% average reduction in memory footprint. Up to 20% increase in CPU efficiency.
  • Framehawk touch scrolling improvements. Over 50% improvement in bandwidth efficiency when scrolling via touch input. Significantly increased frame rate resulting in a smoother user experience.
  • GPU acceleration for DirectX windowed applications on Windows 10 VDAs. This release adds support for GPU acceleration for DirectX 10, 11 and 12 windowed applications on Windows 10 VDAs.
  • Thinwire Build to lossless enhancements. The Build to lossless visual quality for Thinwire has been updated to sharpen fuzzy imagery at a faster rate than delivered in XenApp and XenDesktop 7.6 FP3, and to improve lossy or lossless frame detection. For the main Thinwire article, see Thinwire Compatibility Mode.
  • Reduced VDA memory footprint in Thinwire. The graphics encoder processing pipeline now eliminates the use of an intermediate frame buffer when running Thinwire without video codec compression.
  • Clientname passthrough in double-hop sessions. Applications can use the updated WFAPI SDK to query the client endpoint name and pass this information from any Citrix Receiver to published desktops (XenApp/XenDesktop) and through to a XenApp application (a “double-hop”). This clientname awareness in the XenApp session means that users can seamlessly roam from location to location, and the “double-hop” application will be notified of the change in clientname without having to disconnect or reconnect the session. For more information on how to write conforming applications, see the WFAPI SDK documentation or defer to your application SI/ISV.

Session Recording 7.8

Session Recording 7.8.0 includes support for Platinum XenApp 7.8 and XenDesktop 7.8.  This support includes:
  • Session recording support from a Desktop OS VDA. Record on-screen activity of a user session hosted from a Desktop OS VDA over any type of connection, subject to corporate policy and regulatory compliance.
  • Record sessions on remote PC. Support for recording sessions in Remote PC Access.
  • Delivery Group rules.
  • Keyword filtering during rule configuration.
  • Special handling for unsupported graphics modes.
  • Windows 10 support.
  • Thinwire Compatibility Mode support.

AppDNA 7.8

AppDNA 7.8 includes the following enhancements:

Provisioning 7.8

The folllowing new features are available with Provisioning Services 7.8:

Generation 2 Virtual Machines

System Center Virtual Machine Manager Generation 2 VMs can be provisioned through Provisioning Services. Generation 2 VMs are optimized for modern workloads, that is, the operating system does not carry the overhead of legacy drivers, devices and x86 architectures.

How does it work?

Virtual machine (VM) generation determines the virtual hardware and functionality available to the VM. Within a Hyper-V environment, there are two types of supported VMs: generation 1 and generation 2. Generation 2 VMs possess a simplified virtual hardware model, and support Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) firmware rather than BIOS-based firmware.

In previous versions of Hyper-V, only Generation 1 VMs were supported. With the introduction of Windows Server 2012 R2, there are two generations of VMs to choose from when you create a VM. With Generation 2 VMs,the following functionality was introduced:

  • PXE boot by using a standard network adapter
  • Boot from a SCSI virtual hard disk
  • Boot from a SCSI virtual DVD
  • Secure boot
  • UEFI firmware support

Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) enhancements

This release of Provisioning Services provides continued hardening for UEFI support. UEFI represents a standard firmware interface for PCs, and is designed to replace BIOS (basic input/output system). With these enhancements, Citirx Provisioning Services provides:

  • improved security by helping to protect the pre-boot process against bootkit attacks.
  • support for larger disk drives (greater than 2.2 terabytes).
  • support for modern, 64-bit firmware device drivers which can be used to leverage large amounts of memory during startup.
  • the capability to use BIOS with modern UEFI hardware.

StoreFront 3.5

What’s new in the StoreFront 3.5

StoreFront includes the following new features and enhancements.

Updated StoreFront management console – The StoreFront management console contains a significant number of changes, which enable:

  • Store-centric console architecture – Authentication and Citrix Receiver for Web settings are organized around stores to simplify navigation for multi-store deployment.
  • Different authentication settings for different stores.
  • Configuring delegation of authentication to XenApp or XenDesktop farms or sites.
  • Configuring multi-site high availability.
  • Configuring optimal NetScaler Gateway routing.
  • Setting a Receiver for Web site as the default site in IIS.
  • Configuring many other settings previously done with web.config.

New administration PowerShell SDK:

  • Cmdlets in the new SDK are prefixed with STF and focus on administration tasks grouped around StoreFront deployment-wide configuration, stores, authentication, and Citrix Receiver for Web.
  • Citrix XenDesktop 7.8 and Citrix XenApp 7.8 provides high-level example scripts to enable you to script and automate StoreFront deployments quickly and easily.

The existing cmdlets prefixed with DS are deprecated. They are still available and supported in StoreFront 3.5 to enable a gradual transition to the new SDK.

Configuration export and import:

You can export the entire configuration of a StoreFront deployment. You can import the exported configuration to a deployment with the same StoreFront version for restoration or replication.

Self-service password reset (SSPR):

Users can unlock their Active Directory accounts or reset their passwords using StoreFront. This requires XenApp 6.5.

Zone-based optimal gateway routing:

XenApp 7.7 and 7.8 and XenDesktop 7.7 and 7.8 support applications or desktops from different zones in a single site. You can configure a different NetScaler Gateway for HDX connections to applications or desktops from a different zone.

Global Server Load Balancing (GSLB) powered zone preference:

You can configure GSLB in NetScaler 11.0-65.x and above to supply zone preference information to StoreFront. Along with this feature, you can configure StoreFront to direct the startrequests to the most preferred XenApp or XenDesktop farms or sites for the user location.

Background Server Health Check:

StoreFront runs periodic health checks on each Citrix XenDesktop 7.8 and Citrix XenApp 7.8 broker to reduce the impact of intermittent server availability. You can control the frequency of the health check.

TLS 1.2 support

This StoreFront release supports TLS 1.2.

Source

Download Citrix XenDesktop 7.8 and Citrix XenApp 7.8 here and all the above medias included in the product release. (requires MyCitrix ID)

DEVELOP3D LIVE, Warwick, 31March 2016

develop3dlive

Hi all, if you are looking for an event that is all about CAD, CAM, CAE, PLM, Rendering, 3D technologies, Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality and 3D printing then is FREE!! then DEVELOP3D LIVE is the event to  join. Rachel Berry opened my eyes going there last year 2015 and she made me come all the way from Denmark to Warwick and it was worth the long trip 🙂 If you are looking for travel advice Hotels and such I recommend you read Rachel Berry blogpost, I use myself Kayak.com 🙂 that always saves my life when i am traveling around the world and if you want it cheap use Airbnb.com.

My things learned from DEVELOP3D LIVE 2015

I went there and had high expectations and I was in for a surprise. It was all about above and much more  I saw for the first time Carl Bass the CEO of Autodesk, Gian Paolo Bassi the CEO of SolidWorks, Jon Hirschtick the CEO of Onshore and the founder of SolidWorks, Nikola Bozinovic the Founder and CEO of FRAME, and many many more.

I got my hands on the HP Zvr for the second time, I saw the unit for the first time at NVIDIA GTC in 2013 and HP have acquired the company. I also saw another favorite Augmented Device the HP Sprout, which is an amazing unit. 3Dconnexion was off course also there so all my favorite CAD peripherals and next gen tools.

Below is the picture of Carl Bass CEO of Autodesk talking at DEVELOP3D LIVE last year and Rachel Berry trying Fra.me solution

Carl Bass CEO AutodeskRachel Berry trying out Fra.me

Meet the Speakers of DEVELOP3D LIVE 2016

I am looking very much forward meeting a good friend of mine Adam Jull from IMSCAD Global.
Adam and his team have been early adapters of HDX 3D Pro like myself, so its great to see a pioneer talking at Develop3DLive.

d3dlivespeakers1

d3dlivespeakers

I am also looking very much forward meeting the NVIDIA team + my favorite CAD genius Rachel Berry and also see if AMD have something interesting to show like the Multiuser gpu if its ready for that time.

 

Get your ticket for free here for joining the awesome CAD event in beautiful Warwick. If you never been to UK well this is your reason to go, learn from the best and brightest people on CAD and see the beautiful country side of England. Two awesome things.