Citrix Virtual Apps & Desktop 7 2103
H1 of 2021 is almost done and spring is around the corner. Citrix have released a new version of Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop 7 2103. So its time to upgrade your environment before Spring, a good time to clean up and update your environment and start good in Spring :O).
Release 7 2103 is now available for download, March, 2021.
Citrix Virtual Apps & Desktop 7 2103 is a CR release. Read more about CR here
Citrix Virtual Apps (former name: XenApp) Citrix Virtual Desktop (former name: XenDesktop)
Citrix raises the bar of for user experience and new product release of following technologies:
- Director 2103
- Virtual Delivery Agents 2103 for ServerOS and ClientOS
- Virtual Delivery Agent 2103 for Linux
- Citrix Federated Authentication Service 2103
- Profile Management 2103
- Workspace Environment Management 2103
- Session Recording 2103
- Applayering 2102
- Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop Service
- Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop Standard for Azure
- Citrix Cloud Health Check
- Workspace App 2103 for Windows
- Workspace App 2103 for Windows (Store)
- Workspace App 2103 for Linux
- Workspace App 2103 for Chrome
- Workspace App 2103 for Android
- Workspace App 2103 for MacOS
- Workspace App 2103 for HTML5
- Workspace App 2103 for ChromeOS
What’s new in Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktop 7 2103
Citrix Director 7 2103
Operating system name changes
Operating system names on the Director pages have changed:
- Multi-session OS (formerly Server OS)
- Single session OS (formerly Desktop OS)
Virtual Delivery Agents (VDAs) 7 2103 for Windows Desktop/Server OS.
Version 2103 of the Windows single-session OS and multi-session OS VDAs includes the following enhancements. These items are in addition to the VDA installation and upgrade items listed earlier in this article.
SOCKS5 proxy support for Rendezvous connections
The VDA now supports SOCKS5 proxies to establish a Rendezvous connection. When you use a non-transparent proxy in your network, you can specify either the address of the proxy or the path to the PAC file. For more information, see Rendezvous proxy configuration.
New browser content redirection policy setting
The new Browser content redirection server fetch web proxy authentication setting lets you route HTTP traffic originating at an overlay through a downstream web proxy. The downstream web proxy authorizes and authenticates HTTP traffic using the VDA user’s domain credentials through the Negotiate authentication scheme. For more information, see Browser content redirection server fetch web proxy authentication setting.
Optimization of webcam video streaming
HDX webcam compression no longer requires the VDA to encode, transcode, and decode H.264 video resources. By default, the server streams video directly to the video conferencing applications running in the virtual session. To disable this feature, see HDX webcam video compression.
Graphics status indicator update
New functionality has been added to the graphics status indicator, including a quality slider.
Windows Image Acquisition scanner redirection update
An allow list has been added to give administrators control over which applications on the VDA are allowed access to Windows Image Acquisition scanner redirection. The allow list is input using the registry on each VDA where Windows Image Acquisition is used. By default, no applications have access to Windows Image Acquisition.
To adjust Windows Image Acquisition for applications on the VDA:
- In Registry Editor, go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix.
- Right-click and select New > Key.
- Rename the new key to WIAAllowedProcesses.
- Select WIAAllowedProcesses.
- Right-click and select New > Multi-String Value.
- Rename the new value to AllowProcesses.
- Double-click AllowProcesses.
- Enter the full path and process name for each application that is allowed to access Windows Image Acquisition. Each application must be on a new line.
Any changes are available next time a session is launched on the VDA.
Keyboard enhancements for Russian language
This release addresses keyboard issues for Russian language. The improvements focus on the overall robustness of keyboard interactions in virtual sessions running through Citrix Workspace app. The enhanced Windows VDA keyboard now supports most combinations for Russian input and provides a better user experience for customers in different locales.
Virtual Delivery Agents (VDAs) 7 2012 for Linux
Version 2103 of the Linux VDA includes the following new features and enhancements:
Support for Debian 10.7 and CentOS 8.3
We have added Debian 10.7 and CentOS 8.3 as supported distributions. For more information, see System requirements, Install Linux Virtual Delivery Agent for Debian, and Install Linux Virtual Delivery Agent for RHEL/CentOS.
SSSD support for joining SUSE machines to Windows domains
We have added SSSD support for joining SUSE machines to Windows domains.
Single Linux VDA image for both domain-joined and non-domain-joined use cases
We now provide a single image for creating both domain-joined and non-domain-joined Linux VDAs in Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Standard for Azure. This feature simplifies image preparation and maintenance. For more information, see Create Linux VDAs in Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Standard for Azure.
File transfer enhancement
We have enhanced the file transfer feature by redesigning the progress bar, accelerating download speed, and resolving some bugs. We have also increased the number of files that you can transfer at any one time from 10 to 100. For more information, see File transfer.
Support for configuring session connection timers in Citrix Studio
Previously, you could configure time limits for idle and disconnected sessions only through
/opt/Citrix/VDA/bin/ctxcfg separately on and for each VDA. This release adds the following policies for you to configure session connection timers in Citrix Studio:
- Session idle timer: Determines whether to enforce a time limit for idle sessions.
- Session idle timer interval: Sets a time limit for idle sessions. If Session idle timer is Enabled and an active session has not received user input during the set time, the session disconnects.
- Disconnected session timer: Determines whether to enforce a time limit for disconnected sessions.
- Disconnected session timer interval: Sets an interval before a disconnected session is logged off.
When you update any of the policy settings, ensure that they are consistent across your deployment. For more information about the policies, see Policy support list.
A warning message appears when your time limit for idle sessions expires. See the following screen capture for an example. Pressing OK closes the warning message but cannot keep your session active. To keep your session active, provide user input to reset the idle timer.
New metrics for Linux VMs and Linux sessions are available in Citrix Director
This release adds new metrics for Linux VMs and Linux sessions in Citrix Director.
New metric for each Linux VM:
- The number of CPU cores
- Memory size
- Hard disk capacity
- Current and historical CPU and memory utilization
New metric for each Linux session:
- Idle time
For more information, see Monitor Linux VMs and Linux sessions in Citrix Director.
FAS enhancement for the Linux VDA
We now provide more insightful log outputs and let you specify a path that contains both the root and all intermediate certs when you run the ctxfascfg.sh script. For configuration information, see Configure Federated Authentication Service.
Linux streaming support for RHEL 8.3 and Ubuntu 18.04.5 – experimental feature
Using the Linux streaming feature with Citrix Provisioning, you can provision Linux virtual desktops directly in the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops environment. For more information, see Linux streaming.
Citrix Federated Authentication Service 7 2103
Federated Authentication Service 2103 includes the following new features. For information about bug fixes, see Fixed issues.
In the properties of the Citrix_SmartcardLogon certificate template, the Application Policies extension now contains ‘Client Authentication’ and ‘Smart Card Logon’. [AUTH-812]
Various improvements to FAS performance counters, including improved counter names displayed in Windows Performance Monitor, and improved counter functionality. See Performance counters
Citrix Profile Management 7 2103
This release includes the following new features and enhancements. It also addresses several issues that help to improve overall performance and stability.
Local caching for Citrix Profile Management profile containers
This release adds local caching support for Citrix Profile Management profile containers through the Enable local caching for profile containers policy. With the policy set to Enabled, each local profile serves as a local cache of its Citrix Profile Management profile container. If profile streaming is in use, locally cached files are created on demand. Otherwise, they are created during user logons. To use the local caching feature, put an entire user profile in its Citrix Profile Management profile container. For more information, see Citrix Profile Management profile container
Multi-session write-back support for Citrix Profile Management profile containers
Previously, changes in sessions were written back only to FSLogix Profile Container with the relevant policy enabled. Starting with this release, we rename the Enable multi-session write-back for FSLogix Profile Container policy to Enable multi-session write-back for profile containers to accommodate multi-session write-back support for Citrix Profile Management profile containers. For more information, see Enable multi-session write-back for profile containers.
Profile streaming for folders
With the Enable profile streaming for folders policy set to Enabled, folders are fetched only when they are being accessed. This approach eliminates the need to traverse all folders during user logons. To use this feature, you must also enable the Profile streaming policy. For more information, see Profile Management best practices and Stream user profiles.
Improved experience with the Start menu
We have improved the experience with the Start menu on Windows Server 2016 and Windows Server 2019 through automatic configuration of the relevant policies as follows:
- We are adding Appdata\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Caches to Folders to Mirror.
- We are ensuring that Appdata\Local\Packages is added to Exclusion list – directories.
- We are ensuring that Appdata\Local\Microsoft\Windows\UsrClass.Dat* is added to Exclusion list – files.
Citrix Workspace Environment Management 7 2103
Citrix Workspace Environment Management 2103 includes the following new features. For information about bug fixes, see Fixed issues.
Workspace Environment Management now supports all versions of Profile Management through 2103. Also, the following new options are now available in the Administration Console > Policies and Profiles > Citrix Profile Management Settings interface:
- Enable Local Cache for Profile Container
- Available on the Profile Container Settings tab.
- If enabled, each local profile serves as a local cache of its profile container.
- Enable multi-session write-back for profile containers
- Available on the Advanced Settings tab.
- Replaces Enable multi-session write-back for FSLogix Profile Container of previous releases to accommodate multi-session write-back support for Citrix Profile Management profile containers.
- Enable Profile Streaming for Folders
- Available on the Streamed User Profiles tab.
- If enabled, folders are fetched only when they are being accessed.
For more information, see Citrix Profile Management Settings.
This release updates PowerShell modules in the Workspace Environment Management SDK. The following cmdlets are no longer usable:
Version 2103 of the Workspace Environment Management SDK documentation reflects the update.
Citrix Session Recording 7 2103
This release includes the following new features and enhancements:
Support for deploying the Database on AWS RDS
You can now deploy the Session Recording Database on AWS RDS by using the SessionRecordingAdministrationx64.msi package under \layout\image-full\x64\Session Recording on the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops ISO. For more information, see Deploy the Session Recording Database on cloud SQL database services.
Support for Azure Files and load balancing in Azure
You can now store recording files in Azure file shares that you can mount to both cloud and on-premises deployments. You can also deploy all Session Recording components in Azure and configure load balancing to evenly distribute loads across Session Recording Servers. For more information, see Specify where recordings are stored and Deploy and load-balance Session Recording in Azure.
Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Remote PowerShell SDK support for dynamic session recording
We have added support for the Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Remote PowerShell SDK to facilitate dynamic session recording in a Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops service environment. For more information, see Dynamic session recording.
Font and color redesigns for the web player website
We have implemented font and color redesigns on the web player website. For more information, see Session Recording web player.
Recording playback enhancements
As recordings grow in size, recording files can take longer to download and respond more slowly when you use the seek slider to navigate during playback. To enhance the playback experience, we have decreased the upper limit for recording files from 1 GB to 300 MB and achieved continuous playback by splitting a single recording into multiple files. You can also right-click or select a recording and then choose or click Follow up to show all recording files of the recorded session. For more information, see Specify file size for recordings, Launch the Session Recording Player, and Session Recording web player.
Hiding content on the web player home page
We have added an option in Session Recording Server Properties. It lets you prevent the web player home page from displaying any content. Recordings can be accessed only by way of their URLs. For more information, see Session Recording web player.
Migrating the WebSocket server to IIS
This release migrates the WebSocket server to IIS. A fresh installation of the latest Current Release connects your web browser to the WebSocket server hosted in IIS when you access the web player website. An upgrade installation from an earlier version to the latest Current Release connects your web browser to the original Python-based WebSocket server. To connect to the WebSocket server hosted in IIS, run the <Session Recording Server installation path>\Bin\SsRecUtils.exe -enablestreamingservice command. For more information, see Session Recording web player and Configure load balancing in an existing deployment.
Citrix App Layering 2102
The App Layering 2102 release includes support for the following enhancement:
- App Layering now runs on Google Cloud Platform!
- You can:
- Install an App Layering appliance on Google Cloud Platform.
- Create connector configurations for Google Cloud Platform and Machine creation for Google Cloud Platform.
- Create layers on Google Cloud Platform.
- Move layers from a different platform to Google Cloud Platform, using the Export and Import feature.
- Publish layered images on Google Cloud Platform, or to Machine creation running on Google Cloud.
Labs features are previews of potential functionality in future releases. While a feature is in Labs, do not use it in production. There is no guarantee that a Labs feature remains in the product. When released, the feature can work differently.
The Labs features available in this release include the following:
- You can assign app layers as elastic layers on images that use a different OS layer: Until now, elastic layer assignments required that the app layer assigned use the same OS layer that was used to create the app layer. Now you can try assigning an app layer as an elastic layer on a layered image that uses a different OS layer.IMPORTANT:Running an elastic layer on a different OS layer than the one used to create it can have issues.
To use a Labs feature, you need to enable the feature first.
For information about platforms supported by Citrix App Layering, see System requirements.
Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops service
What is new (March 2021 update)
New and enhanced features
Provision machines into specified availability zones on Azure. You can now provision machines into a specific availability zone in Azure environments. With this functionality:
- You can specify one or multiple Availability Zones on Azure. Machines are nominally equally distributed across all provided zones if more than one zone is provided.
- The virtual machine and the corresponding disk is placed in the speficied zone (or zones).
- You can browse Availability Zones for a given service offering or region. Valid Availability Zones are displayed via PoSH. View service offering inventory items using
For more information, see Provision machines into specified availability zones on Azure.
New features available in Web Studio. The following features are now available in the web-based console:
- Studio now supports associating apps with custom icons. Previously, you had to use PowerShell to add custom icons for use with published applications. You can now also use Studio to do that. For more information, see Manage application groups.
- Studio now supports applying tags to machine catalogs. Previously, you could use Studio to create or delete tags for use with a catalog. However, you had to use PowerShell to apply tags to the catalog. You can now also use Studio to apply or remove a tag to or from a catalog as you do with delivery groups. For more information, see Apply tags to machine catalogs.
- Studio now supports switching between “horizontal load balancing” and “vertical load balancing” modes. Previously, PowerShell was your only choice to switch between horizontal and vertical load balancing modes. Studio now gives you more flexibility to control how to load balance multi-session OS machines. For more information, see Load balance machines.
- Studio now supports including machines in maintenance mode in restart schedules. Previously, PowerShell was your only choice to configure scheduled restarts for machines in maintenance mode. You can now also use Studio to control whether to include those machines in a restart schedule. For more information, see Create a restart schedule.
- Studio now supports configuring Wake on LAN for Remote PC Access. Previously, you had to use PowerShell to configure Wake on LAN for Remote PC Access. You can now also use Studio to configure the feature. For more information, see Configure Wake on LAN.
- Studio now supports applying AWS instance properties and tagging operational resources. When creating a catalog to provision machines in AWS by using MCS, you can specify whether to apply the IAM role and tag properties to those machines. You can also specify whether to apply machine tags to operational resources. You have the following two options:
- Apply machine template properties to virtual machines
- Apply machine tags to operational resources
- AWS dedicated host. Citrix Studio now adds an option called Use dedicated host to the Machine Catalog Setup > Security page. This setting is suitable for deployments with licensing restrictions or security requirements that necessitate your use of a dedicated host. With a dedicated host, you own an entire physical host and are billed on an hourly basis. Owning that host lets you spin up as many EC2 instances as that host permits, without additional charges. For more information, see AWS tenancy.
- Studio now supports running a restart schedule immediately. Studio now lets you run a restart schedule immediately to restart all applicable machines in the schedule. For more information, see Immediately run a restart schedule.
- Autoscale. Autoscale provides the following new features and enhancements:
- Studio now supports displaying machines in drain state. Previously, PowerShell was your only choice to identify machines in drain state. You can now use Studio to identify machines that are in drain state. For more information, see Display machines in drain state.
- Studio now supports defining peak times at a granular level of 30 minutes for VDI delivery groups. Previously, you had to use PowerShell to define the peak times for the days included in a schedule at a granular level of 30 minutes for VDI delivery groups. You can now also use Studio to do that. This support enables you to set the minimum number of machines running in a VDI Delivery Group separately for each half hour of the day.
Azure Shared Image Gallery. Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops service supports Azure Shared Image Gallery as a mastered image repository for MCS provisioned machines in Azure. Administrators have the option of storing a master image in the gallery to accelerate the creation and hydration of OS disks from the master image. This process improves the boot and application launch times for non-persistent VMs.
The gallery contains the following three elements:
- Gallery. Images are stored here. MCS creates one gallery for each machine catalog.
- Gallery Image Definition. This definition includes information (operating system type and state, Azure region) about the master image. MCS creates one image definition for each master image created for the catalog.
- Gallery Image Version. Each image in a Shared Image Gallery can have multiple versions, and each version can have multiple replicas in different regions. Each replica is a full copy of the master image. Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops service creates one Standard_LRS image version (version 1.0.0) for each image with the appropriate number of replicas in the catalog’s region, based on the number of machines in the catalog, the configured replica ratio, and the configured replica maximum.
Shared Image Gallery functionality only works with managed disks. It is not available for legacy machine catalogs.
For details about this feature, see Configure shared image gallery.
Storage buckets created in same Google Cloud Platform region as the machine catalog. In previous releases, MCS created temporary storage buckets during provisioning as part of the disk upload process. These buckets spanned multiple regions, which Google defines as a large geographic area containing two or more geographic places. These temporary buckets resided in the United States geographic location, no matter where the catalog was provisioned. MCS now creates storage buckets in the same region where you provision your catalogs. Storage buckets are no longer temporary; they remain in your Google Cloud Platform project after you complete the provisioning process. Future provisioning operations use the existing storage bucket. If one exists in that region, or a new storage bucket is created if one does not exist in the specified region.
Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops Standard for Azure
A goal of Citrix is to deliver new features and product updates to service customers when they are available. New releases provide more value, so there’s no reason to delay updates. To you, the customer administrator, this process is transparent.
January 2021 updates
Preview support for viewing consumption commitment usage.
Citrix Cloud Healthcheck
Cloud Health Check allows you to run checks that gauge the health and availability of the site and its components. You can run health checks for Virtual Delivery Agents (VDAs), StoreFront servers, and Profile Management. VDA health checks identify possible causes for common VDA registration, session launch, and time zone redirection issues.
If issues are present during the checks, Cloud Health Check provides a detailed report and the actions to fix the issues. Each time Cloud Health Check starts, it checks for the latest version of scripts on the Content Delivery Network (CDN) and automatically downloads the scripts if they do not exist on the local machine. Cloud Health Check always chooses the latest local version of scripts to run health checks.
Citrix Workspace App 7 2103.3 for Windows
nhancement to keyboard layout configuration
The keyboard layout configuration now includes a Don’t sync option. The option is available for both the Group Policy Object (GPO) policy and the GUI configurations.
When you select the Don’t sync option, the server keyboard layout is used in the session and the client keyboard layout is not synced to the server keyboard layout.
For more information, see Keyboard layout and language bar.
Option to disable storing of authentication tokens
Authentication tokens are encrypted and stored on the local disk so that you don’t need to reenter your credentials when your system or session restarts.
With this release, Citrix Workspace app introduces an option to disable the storing of authentication tokens on the local disk. For enhanced security, we now provide a Group Policy Object (GPO) policy to configure the authentication token storage.
This configuration is applicable only in cloud deployments.
For more information, see Authentication tokens.
Microsoft Teams enhancements
- The VP9 video codec is now disabled by default.
- Enhancement to echo cancellation, auto gain control, noise suppression configurations: If Microsoft Teams configures these options, Citrix-redirected Teams honors the values as configured. Otherwise, these options are set to True by default.
DirectWShowis now the default renderer.To change the default renderer, do the following:
- Launch the Registry editor.
- Navigate to the following key location:
- Update the following value:
"UseDirectShowRendererAsPrimary"=dword:00000000Other possible values:
- 0: Media Foundation
- 1: DirectShow (Default)
- Relaunch the Citrix Workspace app.
Citrix Workspace App 2103 for Windows (Store)
This release addresses a number of issues that help to improve overall performance and stability.
Citrix Workspace App 2103 for iOS
This release addresses a number of issues that help to improve overall performance and stability.
Citrix Workspace App 2103 for Linux
Pinning multi-monitor screen layout
With this release, you can save the selection for multi-monitor screen layout. The layout is how a desktop session is displayed. Pinning helps to relaunch a session with the selected layout, resulting in an optimized user experience.
As a prerequisite, you must enable this feature in the
AuthManConfig.xml file. Navigate to
$ICAROOT/config/AuthManConfig.xml and add the following entries to enable the pinning screen layout feature:
<key>ScreenPinEnabled</key> <value> true </value>
Only after adding the key above, you can see the Screen Layout option in the App indicator.
This feature is not available on the web launch of Citrix Workspace app.
For more information, see Pinning multi-monitor screen layout.
Increase in the number of supported virtual channels
In earlier versions of the client, sessions supported up to 32 virtual channels.
With this release, you can use up to 64 virtual channels in a session.
Microsoft Teams enhancements
The VP9 video codec is now disabled by default.
Citrix Workspace App 2103 for Android
Per-store location access
The client-selective trust feature allows Citrix Workspace app to trust access from a VDA session.
Previously, your setting for location access was applied on all configured stores.
Starting with this release, Citrix Workspace app requires the user’s permission to access the location. The selected setting for location access is applied on a per-store basis.
Configure the access levels as follows:
- Select Settings > Store settings.
- Under the Set permissions for option, select a store from the drop-down menu.
- Enable Location.
Citrix Workspace App 2102 for Apple OSX
This release addresses several issues that help to improve overall performance and stability.
Citrix Workspace App 2103 for Chrome OS
Google Cloud Print support
Google no longer supports its Google Cloud Print feature. As a result, the Google Cloud Printing with Citrix Workspace app for Chrome OS is not available..
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