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Citrix Synergy 2014 Day 2

On the 8th of May the second day of Citrix Synergy 2014 was held. I blogged again my experiences of this day.

Citrix Synergy Day 2 started with a general session. I jumped a bit later, because I had an converstation about the Citrix User Group in advance. When I came in Brad Peterson was just on the stage demoing the Citrix Design and Automation Services,   Framework and Mac Media Redirections was show. Dennis Rachiele Senior Network Administrator of Taco was taken on stage telling his story about using Citrix technologies in his company. Next Suzy Mann was on stage from Westpac manager workspace delivery telling their Citrix implementation. Gary Budzinski of CSC was next telling their partner story using Citrix products. Personally I'm not attending such a session for a high level story about using Citrix products, could be really useful if goes a littlebit more in details. Next topic was Partner Innovations about Dell (coming H2 2014) and HP about Moonshot. Again to much marketing again, you can camouflage that with mentioning all the techniscal specs of the system. Now we are ready for the teaser we got yesterday about Intel, Citrix and HP. Are there still people that are getting exited seeing a chip? Brad is there again showing the GPU possibilities with finally different applications, followed by the showing the moonshot thing in real (again looking at some hardware, I'm getting really old that looks riduclous). Although it was big news about Intel vGPU becoming available.

After the keynote I attended the session XenMobile App Edition: Experiences from the field by Daniel Wedel. Daniel started with describing the customer (security is a big concern, skilled technical users), followed by the introduction of XenMobile App Edition (sandbox applications on mobile/target, with[out] MDM) and why to use XenMobile (2factor, SSON, mobile control, secure mail, secure browse internal sites, automatic access control, microVPN, company app store). Next Daniel explains why the only used the App Edition (full contol on enterprise data, user have full control of their device, simpler setup). Daniel also explained some of the history of XenMobile how the product archtitecutre changed and the possibilities of the product. Daniel mentioned the products into the suite: WorxHome, WorxMail, WorxWeb, ShareFile, WorxNotes and WorxDesktop. Daniel touched the previous issue with WorkxMail and battery drainage and how it is resolved, contiuning describing the compontents (NetScaler, AppController, StoreFront, Application Wrapping requirements). Daniel advices to use 1 GW for MDX/HDX if all users are having, both 2 gateways when not all users have MDX (licensing is key: MDX requires Smart Access). Previous also Andorid was an issue, but that have been solved lately. Next Daniel mentioned some issues they had/have: multiple e-mails, microVPN, licenses, smart access, secure browse is slow, User-Agent issues. Some parts are not alway intuitive: timeout WorxWeb, iphone can't do landscape, ipad can't do portrait, can's search mails older than 1 months on IOS, Android has no office viewer. Daniel shown more differences between IOS and Android (links different shown, WorkxPin with 2-factor authentication). Daniel shared some tips and tricks: Xcode is friend, no delegation of control in AppControllers, different installation options, experiences with Notes Traveller).

After lunch I attended the session Designing for 3D Applications by Mayunk Jain and George Prado. They started with an explanation that 3D Virtualization is taking off, most vendors have jumped in including Intel and AMD. Next were thes supported components for HDX 3D Pro for Shared GPU for Desktops and Apps? They mentioned that you need to get a good view of the requirements (target users, segement user population, VDI vs RDS, appropriate graphics card, which server). The   differences between vGPU and GPU Sharing are explained. They see three types of users (tier 1: design engineers [dedicated GPU] tier 2: power users [Shared GPU for Apps/Desktops), tier 3: knowledge workers [software only]). The architecture   discussed next, where we were moving to real world experiences. First statement was performance requirements vary even within same apps. During performance you should also watch GPU Core Utilization, GPU Memory Utilization, Application Architecture and Usage Concurrenty next to the standard counters. Tools used can be HDX Monitor, GPU-Z, Task Manager, Perfmon. Also lakeside software was mentioned. Next some performance test results were discussed. The current usage on a physical workstation should be measured to determine the required resources for the VM (install the VDA on that workstation). Baseline also the server performance. Acutally he is describing how he determines how much VM can be running with which hardware. Also bandwidth consumption is discussed (use case specific,but also shows some reference numbers for usage and latency). Also storage considirations were shared (intial load 10s to 100s IOPS, ready state 10 to 200). Numa is mentioned as it can improve 15% performance, but you should use it only as necessary. He is also mentioning that some 3D or CAD apps are single-threaded and some tips for that situation. The session ended with some customer cases and some additional testing procedures/order.

Best Practices: Migrating Web Interface Customizations to StoreFront by Sam Jacobs was the next session I attended. After an introduction Sam started with tips and tricks about the StoreFront installation: Install and configure SSL before StoreFront is installed. Next was were the information in WI available in WebInterface.conf are stored now within StoreFront config files. Sam also mentions the just released StoreFront Web GUI assistant for editing the files. Beste Practices according Sam are: use application folders, use keywords (auto, mandatory, featured, TreatAsApps [allow desktops to be placed in folders]), Remove Desktop screen. Next topic was why you would customize: speed, branding, reporting/user tracking, user experiences. To speed up Sam advices: CRL checking disabled. Next he discusses how to use Corporate Branding (CSS, JavaScript funtions, Custom test in StoreWeb\contrib), which Sam also shows an example of the possibilties (and how that is accomplished with addtional code and the override possibilties of StoreFront). Sam continued with the StoreFront Store Customization SDK, first he explained the kit continued showing some coding again to disable applications between time frames.

Next I went to the session of Jarian Gibson and Shane Kleinert with their session XenDesktop Monitoring Bake-Off. They started with mentioning the products they tested and which hardware they used. Shane also explained quickly how they executed the tests. Next they discussed all the products based on the architecture, usage scenarios, showing the interface of the product and mentioning their experiecnes. Logically this is difficult to blog, so I recommend checking the slide deck (unfortunate this session is not recorded). They presented really dynamically with nice demovideos.

Last session of the day was App and Desktop Workload Provisioning in 2014 by Daniel Feller and Stuart Moore. They started with some questions about PVS according PVS is dead, when a new release will be available and why there was no 7.5 release. Next topic was about the latest enhancements: improved studio integration with BDM, support for latest OS versions, faster with Write Cache to RAM with disk overflow. Daniel took over describing why PVS is devoloped and how it works in the basics.Stuart took over again starting with design considirations about storage (dynamic/fixed, image size versus cache size). blade design, rack design , multi design. Unfortunate I needed to leave early to have a meeting about Citirx User Groups.