HPE m710x & Citrix – Next generation engineer workstation

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in Citrix, Desktop Virtualization, Edgeline, End User Computing, GRID, HDX 3D Pro, HPE, Intel, M510, M710X, Microsoft, Moonshot, NVIDIA, Provisioning Services, Receiver, SCCM, Server 2012R2, vGPU, VMware, vSphere, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012R2, Windows Server 2016, XenDesktop, XenServer

 

hpe_m710x_specs

 

 

HPE m710x & Citrix – Next gen engineer workstation

What is the m710x?

 

Which HPE appliance can you add the m710x in

Now HPE has a new server catridges available and a new appliance that targets a new business opportunity for SMB/medium customers. Previously you needed to buy a Moonshot 1500 solution that was a 4.3 U chassis, where you could add up to 45 server cartridges. This have changed and new offerings are now available from HPE. These include Edgeline. HPE Edgeline EL1000 Converged IoT System support one HPE Proliant server cartridge and HPE Edgeline EL4000 Converged IoT System, which support up to four HPE Proliant server cartridges. This is great for business that would like CPU/GPU/Fast storage and IO in small capacity but require fast performance. These appliances are also built for IoT systems. This means that HPE Edgeline is a more accessible solution for companies no matter their size or demand.

Testing Methology

I have been testing the m710x with Citrix XenDesktop 7.9 HDX 3D Pro and Windows 10 anniversary edition. I tested several applications from Autodesk, PTC, Siemens and Rheino.

The goal was to show the user experience how it is compared to NVIDIA GRID, which is industry standard of GPU enabled desktop/apps. This is not a benchmark measuring time to load, its simply testing the user responsiveness of one connection which is m710x (2GB video memory) vs NVIDIA GRID K2 K260Q profile (2GB video memory).

Test Setup

To the left the HPE m710x and to the right HPE DL 380Gen9 with NVIDIA GRID K2

m710xvsk240q_01

Latest OS + GPU driver + VDA at that current time was installed on HPE m710x

Latest Hypervisor + OS + vGPU driver + VDA at that current time was installed on HPE DL 380Gen9

m710xvsk240q_02

The GPU driver what is seen inside GPU-Z.

m710xvsk240q_03

Use case and user profiling CAD applications

Latest CAD applications from Autodesk was used such as AutoCAD, Revit, 3DSMax, VRED, Showcase, Fusion360 and Siemens FeMap, Rheino and PTC Creo.

m710xvsk240q_04

Methodology

This is the methodology I use. I am not using any automated scripts or software to simulate mouse moment, I am using a manual process so the human eye can judge the user experience.

m710xvsk240q_05

Below video shows the user experience on the left the m710x and on the right the NVIDIA GRID k260Q profile.

m710xvsk240q_06

User experience with Autodesk AutoCAD 2017 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Fusion 360 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Fusion 360 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Revit 2017 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Revit 2017 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Inventor 2017 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Inventor 2017 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Showcase 2016 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Autodesk Showcase 2016 on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Siemens FeMap on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with Rheino on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

User experience with PTC Creo on m710x vs NVIDIA GRID K2 – K260Q

Summary of keyfindings with m710x for mainstream CAD requirements.

  • m710x works great and reduces the complexity of having virtualising with a hypervisor and having to virtualise a GPU, plus  it reduces the cost and you get bare metal performance. The advantage with intel is that the GPU instructions are send directly in the chip as CPU/GPU is 1 chip and GPU is not going through a PCIexpress board.
  • To install OS, Apps for persistent its recommended using Microsoft SCCM or RES Automation Manager, and if you would like to have a simplified image strategy Citrix Provisioning is the preferred option for HPE Moonshot, which also can do caching in memory and fallback to storage this could potentially speed up the IOPS even more than M.2.
  • Its recommend doing an assessment to see if you are below 2GB frame buffer to take advantage of the m710x, many companies that uses CAD is below this as of now, but if you required more GPU memory then NVIDIA/AMD is a better choice as they have Quadro/GRID that can give 3GB+ and above video memory+ lots of compute. The m710x can open 4Gb models but then it will put 1GB in CPU/GPU and 1GB in memory and 2GB in pagefile, where NVIDIA would put all in their GPU memory. This is why its recommended using assessment software such as UberAgent to understand how much GPU you are currently using.
  • User experience is king with HPE m710x, the cartridge with Windows 10 anniversary update and Citrix XenDesktop 7.9 HDX 3D Pro is ready for CAD vendors such as Siemens, PTC and Autodesk.
  • Applications performance is great, fast and no graphics elements are lost. Graphics are smooth, responsive and acceptable.
  • The performance of the CAD applications in these test are equal with Intel P580 vs GRID K2 K260Q.
  • Elements such as loading large files, zoom-in, rotating, working in layers and rendering works great with HPE m710x.
  • The new HPE m710x catridge is ready for mainstream CAD requirements.

I highly recommend you test your own models as above is samples I have found and customer data is always different, some samples are smaller others are larger.

How to get Involved – HPE Global Innovation Labs

hpelabs

Partner and customer engagement, interaction, assessment and colloboration on solution development and applications.

HPE can help with

  • Build, testing and pre-validation of Edgeline systems and end-to-end solutions
  • Integrated real-life “Edge Experience Zones“ to interact with and highlight industry applications
  • On-site access or secure remote access
  • Datacenter connectivity and testing

Try here https://www.hpe.com/us/en/servers/global-innovation-lab.html

Poppelgaard.com – Professional Services

Above article is written myself as an independent blogger/consultant and the results of the testing of the CAD applications was accomplished by Thomas Poppelgaard and sponsored by HPE. The methodology are as is and samples can be required if the readers would like the material to reproduce the same results.

if you are interested in testing your applications on the ProLiant Server Catridges – please dont hesitate to contact me a thomas@poppelgaard.com
I can also help with above value added tasks plus much more 🙂

Source

recommended articles to read about the new Moonshot/Edgeline productline

HPE Proliant server cartridge m510 and m710x building blocks for Citrix

HPE Moonshot Reinvented

HPE Proliant server cartridge m510 and m710x building blocks for Citrix

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in Autodesk, Citrix, Cloud, Desktop Virtualization, Edgeline, End User Computing, HDX 3D Pro, HPE, Intel, M510, M710X, Microsoft, Moonshot, Provisioning, SCCM, VMware, vSphere, Windows 10, Windows 7, Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012R2, Windows Server 2016, XenApp, XenDesktop, XenServer

HPE have released new server cartridges m510 and m710x for HPE Moonshot and Edgeline. These new server cartridges are the first units that have built-in HPE iLO, so customers can easy manage each server cartridge.

Moonshot cartridge building blocks for Citrix workloads

Below chart describes what HPE Moonshot/Edgeline current strategy is for GPU enabled apps and desktops with Citrix XenDesktop and XenApp.

hpe_moonshot_edgeline2

Below chart describes which GPU enabled HPE Proliant server cartridges that can be used.

Interesting results is that density increases dramatically from m710p to m710x.

If companies requires non GPU enabled compute the m510-16 is a interesting server cartridge for Citrix XenApp

m710x_m510

 

Let’s look at the details of the two new server catridges.

m510 cartridge – hardware specifications

hpe_m510_specs

This server catridge is a beast, it have up to 16 core and 128GB memory and is also Windows Server 2016 ready 🙂

 M510 Citrix XenApp Office Worker with LoginVSI

Below shows some benchmark Citrix have accomplished with LoginVSI, interesting is that they get:

168 XenApp sessions per m510. <1/2 watt per session! 

m510-loginvsi

above chart is made by Tony Sanchez from Citrix

The average amount of users for Knowledge worker workloads Login VSI max was around 138 with 145 users being active at the time of the test. The baseline of 780 was consistent with  additional tests that were repeated. The High Scalability policy template was applied to the desktop group for all Login VSI users.

These test was made by Citrix internally, please read the blog here.

CPU performance of the m510 during the 145 user test. The max CPU utilization was around 93%

during the peak of the test without fully saturating the processor.

m710x catridge – hardware specifications

hpe_m710x_specs

m710x-storageoption1m710x-storageoption2

This server catridge is a beast, it have latest skylake core and 64GB memory and is also Windows 10, Windows Server 2016 and even RHEL, Ubunto ready 🙂

Then its also ready to be virtualized with Citrix XenServer and VMware vSphere and KVM, I will later blog how its working with these hypervisors.

M710x Citrix XenApp Knowledge Worker with LoginVSI

Below shows some benchmark Citrix have accomplished with LoginVSI, interesting is that they get:

67 XenApp Knowledge sessions per m710x

m510-loginvsi

These test was made by Citrix internally, please read the blog here.

 

Hardware Summary of HPE ProLiant m510 and m710x

summary_m510-m710x

I hope the above gives you a pretty good idea on where Moonshot & Edgeline is going – and this is just for Citrix XenDesktop and XenApp. I will cover how its used with Octoblu another time.

How to get Involved – HPE Global Innovation Labs

hpelabs

Partner and customer engagement, interaction, assessment and colloboration on solution development and applications.

HPE can help with

  • Build, testing and pre-validation of Edgeline systems and end-to-end solutions
  • Integrated real-life “Edge Experience Zones“ to interact with and highlight industry applications
  • On-site access or secure remote access
  • Datacenter connectivity and testing

Try here https://www.hpe.com/us/en/servers/global-innovation-lab.html

Poppelgaard.com – Professional Services

if you are interested in testing your applications on the ProLiant Server Catridges – please dont hesitate to contact me a thomas@poppelgaard.com
I can also help with above value added tasks plus much more 🙂

 

Source

Citrix Blogs – X Marks the Spot: XenApp, XenDesktop & XenServer with Intel Xeon & HPE Moonshot!

Citrix Blogs – We Choose to Go to the Moon!

 

Citrix XenDesktop 7

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in App-V, AppDNA, Branch Repeater, Citrix, CloudBridge, CloudGateway, Desktop Virtualization, Edgesight, GRID, HDX, HDX 3D Pro, Hyper-V, Merchandise, Microsoft, NVIDIA, Personal vDisk, Profile Management, Provisioning, SCCM, SCVVM, VGX, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012, XenApp, XenClient, XenConvert, XenDesktop, XenServer

At Citrix Synergy 2013, Anaheim, CA, May. Citrix announced the availability of Citrix XenDesktop 7, the software is now available for download.

In this article i will cover whats new and how “XenApp” & “XenDesktop” merges into 1 product, XenApp is now using the Architecture XenDesktop was build around, and now Applications/Desktop gets delivered either from a Client operating system (Windows 7 or 8) or a Server operating system (Windows Server 2008R2 or Windows Server 2012)
Read more  “components in XenDesktop 7”

I have been waiting for this release to be available. Now XenApp in XenDesktop have all the cool new features such as deep compression codec “HDX 3D Pro” and higher frame rates, so your virtualized 2D/3D applications can run over strict bandwidth with high latency, before this was possible with XenDesktop HDX 3D Pro now XenApp can deliver the same, and the cool thing is XenApp is included in the delivery mechanism of XenDesktop 7. Merchandising and Provisioning Services are still alive and strong and released in a new software version. AppDNA is now included in the XenDesktop Platinum edition with a limited edition Hosted App P2V Analysis.

Components in XenDesktop 7

If you already have experience with a XenDesktop or XenApp environment, it will be helpful to you to identify the components introduced in this release and learn how they work and communicate with each other. Under the new architecture, XenDesktop and XenApp are unified, including management and delivery components, to give administrators a unified management experience.

This figure shows the key components in a typical deployment.

The core components of this release are:

Director — Director is a web-based tool that enables IT support and help desk teams to monitor an environment, troubleshoot issues before they become system-critical, and perform support tasks for end users. You can also view and interact with a user’s sessions using Microsoft Remote Assistance.

Receiver — Installed on user devices, Citrix Receiver provides users with quick, secure, self-service access to documents, applications, and desktops from any of the user’s devices including smartphones, tablets, and PCs. Receiver provides on-demand access to Windows, Web, and Software as a Service (SaaS) applications.

StoreFront — StoreFront authenticates users to sites hosting resources and manages stores of desktops and applications that users access.

Studio — Studio is the management console that enables you to configure and manage your deployment, eliminating the need for separate management consoles for managing delivery of applications and desktops. Studio provides various wizards to guide you through the process of setting up your environment, creating your workloads to host applications and desktops, and assigning applications and desktops to users.

Delivery Controller — Installed on servers in the data center, the Delivery Controller consists of services that communicate with the hypervisor to distribute applications and desktops, authenticate and manage user access, and broker connections between users and their virtual desktops and applications. The Controller manages the state of the desktops, starting and stopping them based on demand and administrative configuration. In some editions, the Controller allows you to install Profile management to manage user personalization settings in virtualized or physical Windows environments. Each site has one or more Delivery Controllers.

XenServer — XenServer is an enterprise-class virtual machine infrastructure solution that creates the foundation for delivering virtual desktops and offers advanced management features. Multiple VMs can run on XenServer, which takes advantage of the advanced virtualization features of the latest virtualization-enabled processors from Intel and AMD. For more information about XenServer, see the XenServer documentation in eDocs.

Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA) — Installed on server or workstation operating systems, the VDA enables connections for desktops and apps. For Remote PC Access, install the VDA on the office PC.

Machine Creation Services (MCS) — A collection of services that work together to create virtual servers and desktops from a master image on demand, optimizing storage utilization and providing a pristine virtual machine to users every time they log on. Machine Creation Services is fully integrated and administrated in Citrix Studio.

Windows Server OS machines — VMs or physical machines based on Windows Server operating system used for delivering applications or hosted shared desktops to users.

Desktop OS machines — VMs or physical machines based on Windows Desktop operating system used for delivering personalized desktops to users, or applications from desktop operating systems.

Remote PC Access — User devices that are included on a whitelist, enabling users to access resources on their office PCs remotely, from any device running Citrix Receiver.

Additional components provide the following features:

Secure delivery — When users connect from outside the corporate firewall, this release can use Citrix NetScaler Gateway (formerly Access Gateway) technology to secure these connections with SSL. NetScaler Gateway or NetScaler VPX virtual appliance is an SSL VPN appliance that is deployed in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) to provide a single secure point of access through the corporate firewall.

WAN optimization — In deployments where virtual desktops are delivered to users at remote locations such as branch offices, Citrix CloudBridge (formerly Citrix Branch Repeater or WANScaler) technology can be employed to optimize performance. Repeaters accelerate performance across wide-area networks, so with Repeaters in the network, users in the branch office experience LAN-like performance over the WAN. CloudBridge can prioritize different parts of the user experience so that, for example, the user experience does not degrade in the branch location when a large file or print job is sent over the network. HDX WAN Optimization with CloudBridge provides tokenized compression and data deduplication, dramatically reducing bandwidth requirements and improving performance. For more information, see the Citrix CloudBridge documentation.

License versions available in XenDesktop 7

The version comes in Evaluation, VDI edition, App Edition, Enterprise Edition and Platinum Edition.

In this topic i will cover which software editions you can download, and which software components are included you can use for each XenDesktop edition.

XenDesktop 7 – Evaluation Edition

Citrix XenDesktop evaluation edition have 99 licenses included and works for 90 days.
This release includes the core components Citrix XenDesktop 7 Core and Components + Receiver + XenServer

XenDesktop 7 – VDI Edition

This release includes the core components Citrix XenDesktop 7 Core and Components + Receiver + Provisioning Services 7 + XenServer + Merchandising Server

XenDesktop 7 – App Edition

This release includes the core components Citrix XenDesktop 7 Core and Components + Receiver + Provisioning Services 7 + XenServer + Merchandising Server

XenDesktop 7 – Enterprise Edition

This release includes the core components Citrix XenDesktop 7 Core and Components + Receiver + XenClient Enterprise + Provisioning Services 7 + XenServer + Merchandising Server

XenDesktop 7 – Platinum Edition

This release includes the core components Citrix XenDesktop 7 Core and Components + Receiver + Hosted App P2V Analysis (AppDNA) + CloudBridge (Branch Repeater) VPX + XenClient Enterprise + Provisioning Services 7 + XenServer + Merchandising Server

What’s new in XenDesktop 7

  • Machine Catalog Desktops and Applications
    • Desktops — Deliver managed desktops to multiple, simultaneously connected remote users. Server OS machine and Desktop OS machine desktops provide features such as SmoothRoaming, session reliability, license consumption, Receiver and Delivery Services authentication, and Desktop Viewer. This release introduces Windows Server OS machine catalogs and desktops as a cost-effective virtualization delivery solution because they provide a significant number of remote users per server and storage resource. This release also provides Remote PC desktops that let users access resources on their office PCs remotely, from any device running Citrix Receiver.
    • Applications — Integrate XenApp publishing capabilities within a deployment. Use this feature to deliver shared hosted applications to multiple, simultaneously-connected remote users.
  • HDX enhancements
    • Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8 support — Deliver a high-definition user experience on Windows 8 virtual desktops and physical machines. HDX 3D Pro has also been upgraded to support Windows 8.
    • Desktop Composition Redirection — Extend the Aero Redirection feature introduced in XenDesktop 5.5 to provide users with a more fluid Windows 7 Aero or Windows 8 desktop experience by leveraging the graphics processing unit (GPU) or integrated graphics processor (IGP) on supported Windows user devices for local DirectX graphics rendering. This feature delivers rich multimedia applications to user devices, while maintaining high scalability on the server.
    • Windows Media client-side content fetching — Enable a user device to stream multimedia files directly from the source provider on the Internet or Intranet to improve network utilization and server scalability.
    • Multicast support — Reduce bandwidth consumption when streaming live video to branch offices. Multicast support enables a single Windows Media source transmission to support multiple users.
    • Real-time multimedia transcoding — Enable audio and video streaming to mobile devices, improving the way that Windows Media content is delivered. Host-based transcoding provides a seamless user experience, even in extreme network conditions. To improve server scalability, if the Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA) has a supported graphics processing unit (GPU) for hardware acceleration, transcoding is done in the GPU.
    • User Datagram Protocol (UDP) audio for Server OS machines — Extend support for audio delivery over UDP/RTP to Server OS machines. This feature delivers superior audio quality for real-time applications like video conferencing and streaming media, even in environments when there is packet loss or congestion.
    • Webcam video compression — Reduce bandwidth consumption to improve performance when using supported video conferencing applications.
    • HDX 3D Pro — Deliver applications with graphics processing units (GPUs) for hardware acceleration to the desktop. This includes 3D professional graphics applications based on OpenGL and DirectX.
    • Server-rendered Rich Graphics and Video — Deliver rich graphics (including Windows 8 or Windows Aero) to virtual desktop users on any client, platform, and bandwidth condition by rendering the content on the server. When users have the latest Citrix Receiver, they will also notice improved performance for server-rendered video.
    • Improved Flash Redirection — Determine when to redirect Adobe Flash content to the user device for local rendering based on the user’s network type and environment. Flash Redirection helps reduce server and network load, resulting in greater scalability while ensuring a high-definition user experience.
  • New installer — Use a single, streamlined installer to guide you through installing the core components (Delivery Controller, Studio, Director, StoreFront, and License Server) and VDAs.
  • Profile management — By default, Citrix Profile management 5.0 is installed silently on master images when you install the Virtual Delivery Agent, but you do not have to use Profile management as a profile solution.
  • Configuration Logging — Capture Site configuration changes and administrative activities to a Configuration Logging Database. You can view the log in Studio using a variety of filters and generate HTML and CSV reports.
  • Director — Monitor and troubleshoot deployments using Director’s redesigned user interface with integrated EdgeSight features:
    • A new help desk view offers an improved troubleshooting experience for help desk administrators, allowing user, machine, and application issues to be resolved quickly.
    • Full administrators have access to other views, including a newly designed Dashboard to provide a graphical summary of your deployment in a central location, and a Trends page to provide improved, in-depth, graphical monitoring and troubleshooting of the entire deployment with various time ranges.
    • EdgeSight performance management provides the historical retention and trend reporting. With historical retention of data versus the real-time assessment, administrators are able to create Trend reports, including capacity and health trending.
    • EdgeSight network analysis leverages HDX Insight to provide an application and desktop contextual view of the network. With this feature, Director provides advanced analytics of ICA traffic in their XenDesktop deployment.
  • Delegated Administration — Group objects into administrative scopes. This feature provides an enterprise-class administration model with role-based access control, custom roles with configurable permissions, and fine-grained, object-based control.
  • StoreFront replaces Web Interface — Create centralized enterprise stores to deliver desktops, applications, and other resources to users on any device. This feature provides authentication and resource delivery services for Citrix Receiver.
  • Delivery Controller auto-update — Automatically notify Virtual Delivery Agents (VDAs) when Controllers are added to and removed from the Site. This feature helps prevent VDA rejection of sessions that are launched by unknown Controllers, and VDA startup delays or errors caused by invalid Controller information. For information about how to preserve the CNAME functionality, see CTX137960.
  • Client Folder Redirection — Change the way client-side files are accessible on the host-side session. When you enable only client drive mapping on the server, client-side full volumes are automatically mapped to host drive letters. When you enable client folder redirection on the server and then the user configures it on the user device, only the portion of the local volume that is specified by the user is redirected.
  • Improved Virtual Desktop Access Control Settings – Control user access to both Server OS Machines and Desktop OS Machines in a simple and unified way with a new, streamlined group of security settings.
  • Improved and integrated error reporting — Studio error reporting links directly to the Citrix Support website. When users encounter an error situation, choosing the Get Advice option submits information about the error to the Citrix website. The information is analyzed and the user is redirected to a Website containing remedial advice.
  • StoreFront enhancements
    • Desktop Appliance sites — Access Desktop Appliance sites through a website on the StoreFront store. The site is created automatically when a store is created. If, for example, the store has a path of path/Citrix/Store, the Desktop Appliance site path ispath/Citrix/StoreDesktopAppliance. Users can restart their virtual machine-hosted desktops on Desktop Appliance sites.
    • Database as a service — Write user subscription data for each store to the local disk on the StoreFront server by using the new subscription store service. The data is then propagated across the server group.
  • IPv6 support — Connect to clients and core components on IPv4, IPv6, or dual-stack (IPv4/IPv6) environments.
  • Personal vDisk — Personalize your virtual desktops. In addition, a dedicated storage disk is created, before logon, so that users can store their data on the desktop, including any applications they install.
  • Machine Creation Services (MCS) support for Microsoft Key Management System (KMS) activation — Each virtual machine (VM) created with MCS provides a unique activation for the Windows operating system and Office 2010, which enables the KMS system to record each VM as a separate machine.
  • Support for group policies configured in Citrix Mobility Pack — These policies for Citrix Receiver for mobile devices include Start menu redirection and removing common programs from the Start menu. For details, see Configure policies for mobility features.
  • Multi-touch support — Touch functionality is supported on multi-touch computers, including Microsoft Windows 7 and Windows 8 workstations and Windows Server 2012 for VDAs.
  • Remote PC Access — Automated administration of Remote PC Access is fully integrated into the core functionality of the XenDesktop Delivery Controller and Studio. One Remote PC machine catalog and one Remote PC Delivery Group are created automatically when you set up a Remote PC deployment; you can add more machine catalogs or Delivery Groups later using Studio. This process replaces the XML configuration file and PowerShell scripts used by Remote PC Access in XenDesktop 5.6 FP1. The current release also adds the ability to remotely access office PCs running Windows 8.
  • Support for Fast User Switching using RDP connections — This Microsoft Windows feature makes it possible for multiple users to share a desktop without closing programs or logging off existing users. Administrators can take advantage of this feature to troubleshoot problems and install updates, without interrupting tasks or programs in use by the logged on user, by initiating an RDP connection to the VDA.
  • Compatibility with AhnLab keyboard encryption used in Korea — This release is compatible with keyboard encryption that is installed on Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) hosts.

Supported hypervisor

  • XenServer.
    • XenServer 6.2
    • XenServer 6.1
    • XenServer 6.0.2
  • VMware vSphere. No support is provided for vSphere vCenter Linked Mode operation.
    • VMware vSphere 5.1 Update 1
    • VMware vSphere 5.0 Update 2
  • System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 and System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 SP1, plus any version of Hyper-V that can register with those System Center Virtual Machine Manager versions.

Source

Download Citrix XenDesktop 7 here (require MyCitrix ID)

Admin Guide for Citrix XenDesktop 7

Install Guide for Citrix XenDesktop 7

Citrix AppDNA 6.2

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in App-V, AppDNA, Citrix, Microsoft, SCCM, VMware, vSphere, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008R2, Windows Server 2012, XenApp, XenDesktop

Citrix have released a new version of AppDNA 6.2. This is a major software release and this versions contains many new features, lets dig in whats new:

What’s New in AppDNA 6.2

The AppDNA 6.2 release is focused on providing full support for Windows 8, Windows Server 2012, and Internet Explorer 10, support for App-V 5 and System Center Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) 2012, incremental loading of ConfigMgr data, Install Capture support for VMware vSphere 5.1, and reporting performance and usability improvements.

Full support for Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012

The Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 reports now have full general acceptance (GA) release status. You can switch these reports on in the Configure Modules Wizard. If you used the early access support in AppDNA 6.1 SP1 and want to take advantage of the new and improved algorithms, you need to re-analyze your applications.

AppDNA now captures more information about digital signatures when you import applications. Some of the Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012 algorithms use this additional DNA in conjunction with the operating system (OS) DNA, to identify applications that will not run on Windows 8 and Server 2012 because of certificate trust issues. To take advantage of these algorithms for applications that you have already imported into AppDNA, you need to re-import the applications (in order to capture the additional DNA) and then run the analysis. For more information about the digital signature DNA, see Digital Signatures.

Full support for Internet Explorer 10 and other Internet Explorer improvements

The Internet Explorer 10 algorithms now have full GA status. These algorithms are within the Internet Explorer (IE) report and you can turn them on in the Configure Modules Wizard.

Algorithms – There are a number of new Internet Explorer 9 algorithms, which also apply to Internet Explorer 10. For a list of the new and changed algorithms, see Algorithm Changes. If you want to take advantage of the new and improved algorithms, you need to re-analyze your web applications.

OS images – The Internet Explorer report includes a number of algorithms that check the OS image. For example, some of the ActiveX algorithms check whether a particular ActiveX control has been registered in the OS image. You can now analyze applications for IE compatibility against multiple OS families. This is useful, for example, when analyzing for compatibility with Internet Explorer 10, which is supported on both Windows 7 and Windows 8.

Support for App-V 5.0

AppDNA 6.2 extends the existing App-V support with support for App-V 5.0.

Direct import of App-V 5.0 packages – Direct Import can now handle App-V 5.0 .appv packages. This means that you can now import applications directly into AppDNA using their .appv packages, like you can for App-V 4.6 .sft files.

Algorithms – There is not a separate report for App-V 5.0 – if you want to analyze your applications for compatibility with App-V 5.0, run the Configure Modules Wizard and select App-V 5.

App-V 5.0 has a new feature that enables the virtualized application to have more entry points to the base OS. For example, this means that applications can register themselves as the default email client or as a custom URI handler on the OS. A new algorithm has been introduced to test for this scenario in earlier versions of App-V where it is not supported. In addition, additional algorithms have been introduced to test for newer versions of Microsoft Office applications that are unsupported or that require special sequencing. For a summary of these new algorithms, see Algorithm Changes. To take advantage of these new algorithms, you need to re-analyze your applications.

Execution profile – AppDNA 6.2 comes with a new execution profile called App-V 5.0 Sequencer, which can sequence applications for App-V 5.0. See App-V 5.0 Sequencer Execution Profile for more information.

Improved integration with ConfigMgr and AD and support for ConfigMgr 2012

Support for ConfigMgr 2012 – AppDNA 6.2 introduces the ability to integrate with System Center Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr) 2012 and supports the new ConfigMgr application model for deploying applications, in addition to the legacy ConfigMgr package model for deploying applications. AppDNA 6.2 retains support for ConfigMgr 2003 and ConfigMgr 2007, and can handle integration with multiple versions of ConfigMgr. This is useful if you are implementing a phased migration to ConfigMgr 2012 and have two versions of ConfigMgr running in parallel.

New data load wizard – AppDNA 6.2 introduces a completely new wizard for loading Active Directory (AD) and ConfigMgr data into AppDNA. Designed for scalability, this has several advantages over the old feature it replaces. It has a more streamlined and attractive user interface and provides options to load only ConfigMgr data that has changed since last time, or to select applications and packages individually or in batches, by date, for example. These features provide support for loading data into AppDNA from large ConfigMgr sites. Like the old Import Data feature, you can run the wizard from within AppDNA or remotely – for example, on the ConfigMgr server. See Loading AD and ConfigMgr Data for more information.

Improved loading of ConfigMgr data – AppDNA now extracts only data that is relevant to AppDNA from the ConfigMgr server. In addition, the actual loading of the data into the AppDNA database has been improved not only to support loading data in batches, but also to conserve data that has not changed and to remove data that has been deleted in ConfigMgr. When removing deleted ConfigMgr items from the AppDNA database, any associated applications that have been imported into AppDNA are retained, but their links with the deleted ConfigMgr entities are removed.

ConfigMgr connectivity – The option to connect to ConfigMgr through a direct connection with the ConfigMgr database has been removed in favor of Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI), which is recommended by Microsoft. Using WMI requires Distributed COM (DCOM) to be enabled on the local computer. For step-by-step instructions for enabling it, see Troubleshooting Extracting AD and ConfigMgr Data.

Connection settings – When you enter the connection details in the wizard, AppDNA automatically stores them in the Settings dialog box. This means that you only need to enter the details again if they change.

Install Capture support for VMware vSphere 5.1

You can now use a VMware vSphere 5.1 virtual machine for Install Capture (and for Forward Path tasks that automate the Install Capture process). This requires access to a fully licensed installation of vSphere 5.1, a virtual machine for the exclusive use of Install Capture, and a vSphere user account that provides permissions for advanced virtual machine operations through web services. The virtual machine must be configured to allow remote desktop connections and must have the VMware Tools installed. See Setting up a vSphere VM for Install Capture for more information.

Reporting improvements

AppDNA 6.2 introduces a new internal report view architecture, which can more easily handle very large application portfolios. This means that the reporting results are now faster to display within both the AppDNA desktop client and the web client. The performance improvement is particularly noticeable when displaying the results for very large numbers of applications.

In addition, there have been a number cosmetic changes to the report views to improve usability, provide a more attractive experience, and continue the Citrix re-branding that was started in AppDNA 6.0.

As a result of these changes, the old “Allow paging” reporting setting has been replaced by a “Default page size” setting. In addition a new “Show counts in PDF exports” setting has been introduced. See Reporting Settings for more information.

Improvements to the Configure AppDNA Environment wizard

In order to simplify the initial configuration of AppDNA, there have been some changes to the AppDNA Web Site Credentials step in the Configure AppDNA Environment wizard. The wizard now provides an option to automatically create and configure a local service account. This change may not be apparent to existing users unless you use the option to create a new database. See Create a New AppDNA Database for more information.

In addition, when you use this wizard to reset the website credentials – for example, after a password change – it now automatically performs an IIS reset if this is necessary.

Execution profiles

Previous versions of AppDNA installed only the Snapshot execution profile. The other standard execution profiles had to be obtained separately. AppDNA 6.2 now installs all of the standard execution profiles. However, only Snapshot is activated by default. For a full list of the installed execution profiles and instructions for activating them, see Execution Profiles.

Multi-selection in the Application List

You can now select multiple adjacent and non-adjacent applications in the Application List screen and the Select Applications window in the Report Viewer. To do this, hold down CTRL and click the applications that you want to select (or click the first application and then hold down SHIFT and click the last application that you want to select). Then press CTRL+M to select those applications or CTRL+U to deselect them. (In the Application List, you can click the options on the Edit menu instead of pressing CTRL+M and CTRL+U.)

Language support

Although AppDNA 6.2 is not available in translated versions, it has been tested on Simplified Chinese, Japanese, Traditional Chinese, and German local language versions of Windows and has been found to provide general support for the following:

  • Installing and running AppDNA on local language versions of Windows.
  • Running AppDNA with local language versions of the applications with which it interacts (such as Microsoft Word, Adobe Reader, and Microsoft SQL Server).
  • Importing, analyzing, and reporting on applications that have names in local languages.
  • Using path names that contain characters in local languages.

However, there are some known issues. See Known Issues for more information.

Documentation

New Help system – AppDNA 6.2 comes with an improved Help system. This has a navigation pane that facilitates browsing the contents of the Help system and finding related topics. With one or two exceptions, the structure mirrors the structure of the AppDNA 6.2 documentation on the Citrix eDocs website (http://support.citrix.com/proddocs/).

Updates – Both the Help documentation and the documentation on the Citrix eDocs website have been updated for this release. In addition to the changes for the new and updated features, there have been a number of other improvements. For example, the following are new or significantly improved:

Requirements – The new Help system requires JavaScript to be enabled in Internet Explorer. JavaScript is disabled by default on Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2008 R2, and Windows Server 2008. If you have installed the AppDNA server on one of these platforms and the security policies in your enterprise do not allow JavaScript to be enabled on Windows Server machines, you need to access the Help system from an AppDNA client machine. Alternatively, go to the Citrix eDocs website (http://support.citrix.com/proddocs/), where you can download a PDF of all or selected sections of the AppDNA 6.2 documentation.

In this section

Upgrading to AppDNA 6.2

Note: In the next version of AppDNA, Citrix intends to change the required version of the Microsoft .NET Framework to Microsoft .NET Framework 4.0 for both the AppDNA server and desktop client. This means that you may need to install this framework before upgrading (depending on which version of Windows you are running).

Source

Download Citrix AppDNA standard version here (Require MyCitrix ID)
Download Citrix AppDNA enterprise version here (Require MyCitrix ID)

Citrix XenApp Connector for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager

Written by Thomas Poppelgaard. Posted in Citrix, Microsoft, SCCM, XenApp

Citrix have final released “Project Thor” or Citrix XenApp Connector for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager.

If you have Microsoft SCCM 2012 in your environment and XenApp 6.5 this is a must product to combine with this software release.

The XenApp Connector for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager enables administrators to orchestrate the tasks required to deliver applications both to end-users and XenApp Servers seamlessly with Microsoft System Center 2012 (and SP1).

With the XenApp Connector, administrators can:

  • Extend the Configuration Manager 2012 user-centric and rules-based application delivery capabilities to deliver applications to users in the most appropriate manner for the device they are using: MSI, App-V, CAB, or XenApp
  • Enable user self-service of XenApp hosted applications from both Receiver and the System Center Application Catalog
  • Orchestrate the process of deploying applications to XenApp servers, farms, and worker groups from within the Configuration Manager console, both directly, for traditionally managed farms, as well as for streamed farms when used in conjunction with Provisioning Services
  • Ensure high availability by optionally leveraging the Power and Capacity Management Concentrator to gracefully orchestrate the deployment of applications and software updates without any downtime for users

The XenApp Connector for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager is compatible with XenApp 6.5 only. In addition, if you wish to use the XenApp Connector for XenApp farms that are streamed by Provisioning Services you will need to download and apply the hotfix listed below.

Source

Download The XenApp Connector for System Center 2012 Configuration Manager here (Require MyCitrix ID)

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