Part 1: Deploying XenDesktop 7.6 – Introduction

I recently started working on a new project which encompasses the upgrade of our existing Citrix Presentation Server environment. For the Citrix Admins, you know that PS is quite old, in fact it has been discontinued and so for those organizations that are presently working with PS, must look at either upgrading to a new Citrix solution or go with another product. This blog post series will encompass a small scale (in my lab, different from work lab) XenDesktop 7.6 deployment in order to test some of the new features.

Prior to version 7.x, Citrix XenApp was built on IMA (Independent Management Architecture). With introduction of XenApp/XenDesktop 7.x, that has now been changed to FMA (Flexcast Management Architecture). With this change in architecture, Citrix is looking to consolidate and unify both Apps & Desktops to make a very strong integration between application and desktop virtualization. With that said, this post will focus on both Desktop and Application virtualization.

This blog series will include the following topics:

  • Understanding the difference between FMA and IMA
  • Deploying Delivery Controller
  • Deploying Studio
  • Deploying Director
  • Deploying VDA
  • Deploying StoreFront
  • Deploying Receiver
  • Publishing Applications
  • Load Balancing (Netscaler)
  • Provisioning Services

Now, let’s explain what these new role are:

  • Deliver Controller – Responsible for distributing applications and desktops to the users. Each site must contain at least one Delivery Controller
  • Virtual Delivery Agent – Is a pre-requisite and must be deployed on servers that are hosting the application. It is used in conjunction with the Delivery Controller and used for managing HDX connections between the application and Citrix Receiver
  • Citrix Receiver – Used as an end user client to allow access to applications and desktops. The citrix receiver can be deployed on desktops, laptops, tablets, and all other mobile devices
  • Citrix StoreFront – Is used as a broker to authenticate users for when they access their published resources
  • Citrix Studio – A console that is used to publish and manage applications. Other tasks include; management of servers, monitoring and provisioning new resources, etc
  • Citrix Director – Used as a helpdesk tool for IT support staff to monitor and troubleshoot the XenApp/XenDesktop environments

The following will be the pre-requisits for the deployment of this PoC:

  • 2 x Windows Server 2012 R2 Virtual Machines hosting Delivery Controller, Studio, and Director
  • 2 x Windows Server 2012 R2 Virtual Machines hosting StoreFront
  • 1 x Windows Server 2012 R2 Virtual Machine with VDA
  • 1 x Windows Server 2008 R2 Virtual Machine with VDA
  • 1 x Windows Server 2012 R2 Virtual Machine with SQL Server 2012 Standard
  • 1 x Windows Server 2012 R2 Virtual Machine with RDS and License Server roles
  • 2 x Windows Server Machine Catalog for Apps and Desktops

This blog series will be broken down into the following section:

Andrey Pogosyan

Andrey Pogosyan is a Virtualization Architect who’s focus is on infrastructure virtualization involving mainly VMware and Citrix products. Having worked in the IT industry for 10+ years, Andrey has had the opportunity to fulfill many different roles ranging from Desktop Support and all the way up to Architecture and Implementation. Most recently, Andrey has taken a great interest in the datacenter technology stack encompassing Virtualization, mainly VMware vSphere\View, Citrix XenApp\XenDesktop and Storage (EMC, HP, NetApp).

1 Response

  1. Edwin says:

    Hello Andrey, I love this post. Can you send me the documents on email? thx

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