You are viewing posts by Jeff Pitsch

Should Citrix XenApp be used to virtualize apps for XenDesktop VDI?

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on Nov 21, 2016

As a Citrix Technology Professional, I've worked with hundreds of Citrix customers who are starting to implement VDI with Citrix XenDesktop. Most have been using Citrix XenApp for years to publish a handful of core applications to physical PCs. Surprisingly, some are thinking they'll just continue using XenApp to publish these core apps to XenDesktop virtual desktops, even though they are implementing Unidesk to streamline application and image management for the new VDI environments.

When I explain the cost, performance, managability, and network ramifications of doing this, and the different options Unidesk now gives them for both XenApp and XenDesktop, they say, "Of course, why didn't I realize that?" It's not their fault - nobody has explained it to them! That's what I'll try to do in this blog.

Citrix XenDesktop, Citrix XenApp   |   Read this post >

Microsoft Office Customization Tool in VDI

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on Oct 30, 2015

With app delivery and patch management for on-premises and cloud environments simplified through innovations like Unidesk, which enables Windows apps such as Microsoft Office to be packaged once and delivered anywhere as a virtual disk "layer," admins may forget that other secondary tools are still needed. A prime example is the Office Customization Tool (OCT).

Now you may be asking, "why would I care about customizing my Office installation?" If you have deployed non-persistent desktops in a VDI environment, you need to have some way of creating the mail profile for the end users. Group Policy won’t or can’t do everything. Maybe you don’t even have rights to set your own GPOs. This where the Office Customization Tool, available with the volume license edition of Microsoft Office, comes in handy.

The OCT allows you to create Outlook profiles so the user doesn’t get prompted for Exchange information. It can set default user settings for Office. It can assign certificates. Probably the best feature, in my opinion, is the ability to automatically create a mail profile. This can prevent mistakes from end users which, in the end, prevents calls to the help desk.

VDI, Microsoft Office, Customize Office Setup, Office Customization   |   Read this post >

Unidesk Demos Windows 10 App Delivery and Image Management

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on Jul 24, 2015

With Windows 10 about to be released, we’ve been getting a lot of questions about when Unidesk will bring its layering simplicity to the management of Windows 10 images. The best way to answer that is to demo Unidesk’s support for the Windows 10 pre-release.

Image Management, windows 10, Demo, Application Delivery   |   Read this post >

Unidesk, Session Hosts, and XenApp – together at last.

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on Jun 3, 2015

Way back when, 20 years or so ago, when I first started in this business, I was introduced to products made by Citrix. The first product I used from them was WinFrame, back in the Windows NT 3.5 days. I loved that product. I could see the potential behind it. It introduced me to Windows as a Terminal Server and I’ve stuck with that ever since, making a career out of working with, not only Terminal Services (or Session Host as it’s now known), but eventually VDI as well.

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How to Enable Windows Updates for all Windows Products

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on Nov 13, 2014

The other day I was following a thread in our forums. It involved a customer that was following our Microsoft Office recipe and was trying to enable Windows Update so that it would install updates for Office in Windows 7.  In the recipe we recommend that you do not start any Office application due to the fact that it will try to activate.  If it activates, it will generate a unique activation ID that you then have to go out and rearm the installation so it gets rid of the ID. The reason they needed to start an application, like Word, is because Office will detect that automatic updates for other Microsoft applications is turned off.  It will prompt you to turn them on and then automatically do that for you.

How To   |   Read this post >

Additional Testing on Microsoft User Experience - Virtualization Beta 2

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on Sep 6, 2012

A couple of months or so ago, Microsoft came out with their User Experience – Virtualization Beta 2. Once again I tested this in a Unidesk environment. Here are some observations and thoughts.

settingspackagesThe first thing is B2 requires a clean install of everything. Unidesk makes this really easy with our layering technology. Simply create a new layer for the B2 agent and generator and then push those out while removing the old versions from your test machines. Could it be any easier than that? No need to recreate your vm’s, no need to uninstall the old version and possibly leave behind remnants that could hinder your testing. You will also want to clean out the SettingsPackages folder as well. This is a hidden folder where all the package settings are held. It is located, by default, in the home directory of the user if you specified a home directory in Active Directory.

VDI Test Drive   |   Read this post >

Some Basic Group Policy Settings for VDI

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on Jun 28, 2012

Back a few years ago, I wrote an article about Group Policy Objects (GPO) and how to apply them to Terminal Services. I was reviewing that article the other day, and realized that it is still relevant today in relation to VDI. So I figured I would do some updating, and go over that as well as how to do some basic work with profiles.

How To   |   Read this post >

My Testing of Microsoft User Experience Virtualization (UE-V)

Posted by Jeff Pitsch on May 24, 2012

Microsoft recently dropped their new profile management software on the public and I’ve had a chance to test it out with Unidesk.

UE-V is a simple way of getting around the problem of roaming profiles. If you’ve ever used roaming profiles, then you know the headaches they can cause. Profile corruption is typically a #1 or #2 problem in terminal services environments and even non-persistent desktops where you want to give users some sense of control. Using this solution, you’ll be able to eliminate roaming profiles altogether and get away with using local profiles. A downside to UE-V is that it will only be available to MDOP customers.

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