NOTE: This blog was also posted on MyCUGC.org (link) on March 3rd, 2021.
About three years ago, I posted a blog about how to perform an unattended installation and configuration of Citrix StoreFront with Ivanti Automation. It did the installation, the creation of a new store and it added a second StoreFront server to the server group.
Since most organizations are stepping away from (still awesome) tools like Ivanti Automation and are moving towards solutions like Puppet, Ansible, Chocolatey, Packer, plain PowerShell, etc., I wanted to create a PowerShell script that does the same, but does not require an automation tool.
In this short blog, I will post how it works, how you can use it and of course the scripts themselves. Keep in mind that this is just an example, it is not a definitive solution for deploying StoreFront. Also, these scripts are not signed with a certificate because you need to enter your environment specific variables.
The year 2019 has been all about Windows Virtual Desktop. If you are even slightly active in the IT circles on social media, you have definitely read about it. The most interesting part about it is the fact that it finally turns Windows 10 into a multi-user OS. Of course, there are other benefits (access to FSLogix!), but that’s not what this blog is about, nor is it about Citrix’s reaction to it in the form of Citrix Managed Desktop. As the title suggests, it’s about automation. It’s about another challenge to automate something that isn’t automated (yet) out of the box.
This time, we will be trying to automate the Azure deployment of a Citrix Cloud Connector machine together with a Windows 10 multi-user VM, all the way until it is ready to accept user sessions. We will walk you through the challenges we had, the issues we ran into and why we are even doing this (short answer: because we can).
If your daily job has anything to do with virtual workspaces, you definitely have heard something about app layering. App layering is seen as the replacement for the ‘old’ application virtualization solutions like Microsoft App-V and VMware ThinApp.
While app layering is a good solution for most of the usual issues that come with running many applications on the same machines, it still takes a lot of time to create all those layers.
So together with automation-aficionado Chris Twiest we asked ourselves the question:
‘Is it possible to automate app layer creation?’
This blog will focus on the automation of creating app layers with Citrix App Layering, while Chris Twiest focused on doing the same with VMware App Volumes, the result of which you can find here. This blog is also a precursor to our presentation at the Expert 2 Expert Virtualization Conference in Athens (link).
EDIT Dec 19th 2018: Click here for a YouTube video of the presentation.
At a customer a while back we had an Citrix XenDesktop 7.9 environment. VMware vSphere 6.0 was used as hypervisor, Citrix Provisioning Services 7.9 for deployment and Microsoft Windows 10 as OS for the virtual desktops. Since these desktops were non-persistent we were able to use the local solid state storage in the hypervisors. This did however present some challenges when it came to the deployment of the virtual desktops. We (my colleague Leon van Efferen and myself) ended up with a PowerShell script that did just about everything.
In this post I will explain what the script does and what you need to do to use it in your own XenDesktop/PVS/vSphere environment. You can find the actual script at the end of the post.
Keep in mind that the customer used VMware vSphere (XenServer or Hyper-V were a big no-no for unknown reasons) and therefore the script only contains the commands for vSphere (PowerCLI 6.x). If you would like to use it for other hypervisors, feel free to alter it in any way and present it as your own on your own blogsite.