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Cuong Le

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Citrix XenDesktop 7: Director and EdgeSight explained!

Posted by Cuong Le on

There have been a lot of rumors circulating about the demise of EdgeSight.  After reading this article, it will be very clear that EdgeSight is not dead – in fact it is more alive than ever as we demonstrated in the Citrix Synergy 2013 Keynote (38:26 min. into the Keynote video).  MarkT and BradP discussed Director and EdgeSight and how we are utilizing Director as our unified console in XenDesktop 7, enabling Citrix application and desktop administrators with the ability to holistically monitor their XenDesktop 7 environment.  This article will break down this value proposition and explain exactly what that means.

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2013 Predictions: Proper Application Management Will Save Time, Money and Frustration (Part 2 of 2)

Posted by Cuong Le on

Yesterday I started sharing my 2013 predictions for application management. This year will be one of change due to Windows XP migration, virtualization taking center stage and cloud discussions moving more on the corporate agenda. Delivering applications to end users is the goal in each of those scenarios. Doing it well will mean great rewards for you in 2013- especially in terms of saving time, money and stress.

Here is part two of my predictions for your application management world in 2013…

6)      Weather will continue to be a big story. Floods, hurricanes, blizzards – they all affect how employees get work done. Virtualization is again key here- allowing people to work no matter where their location. Test apps in advance of disaster – be sure mission critical work apps can be accessed on virtual desktops.

7)      Workshifting! Unless you’re physically touching in-house hardware, like unplugging a machine, or have a very restrictive management team, you’ll workshift more in 2013. With a virtual desktop, you can work from the coziness of your home, the coffeeshop or the (non-cozy) airport.  Know which apps can be delivered virtually and ensure your team can work remote. (Bonus – see the Postcards from Inspiration’s Edge photo contest)

8)      Your world is a more global world. Through Facebook, I can see when two Midwestern college friends meet up for dinner in Hong Kong, a friend takes an African dance class in Madrid and a cousin runs a marathon in Istanbul. The same is true for your work world- team members are on every continent. The California engineer and the India contractor need to access the same engineering application – and both can access it best with a virtual desktop. Test application compatibility of in-house developed applications just the same as commercial applications with AppDNA software.

9)      Superbugs will continue to cause illness. Whether it’s a flu breakout in your office or at your daycare, no one wants to share germs. Keep your kids’ germs at home by working out of your house. Keep your coworkers’ germs away from you by staying at home when they insist on bringing their “somewhat contagious” outbreak to work. Again, the virtual desktop is better at preventing disease than any zinc, orange juice or wonder drug regimen. Automate application testing, remediation and virtualization for delivery on virtual desktops.

10)      You want more zen in 2013. Are you frustrated repeating the same processes over and over again, looking for the one fix that will solve a problem? AppDNA can be the answer key to help you. Let AppDNA software automatically test batches of applications, multiple OS instances or virtual configurations – and show you best options, all in much less time than manual testing.

Get started on your 2013 list. Download the AppDNA software trial and see how to speed your application testing, remediation and virtual app preparation.

Source: Citrix's Blog

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Topics: Cloud Computing

2013 Predictions: Proper Application Management Will Save Time, Money and Frustration (Part 1 of 2)

Posted by Cuong Le on

In general, I’m not usually big on “predictions” for the New Year. So many of the “big ideas” the experts tell us are vague memories in April and forgotten by August. I know the experts say the 2013 color of the year is emerald green, Anne Hathaway’s on-screen haircut may have locked an Oscar nod and the Chicago Bears are going to be rebuilding their team.  What 2013 holds for the stock market, scientific discovery and new one-hit wonders, I’m not sure.

What I do know is that application management will be more of an issue for you in 2013 than ever before. Here is part one of my predictions for your application management world in 2013…

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Topics: Cloud Computing

XenApp Planning Guide - Virtualization Best Practices

Posted by Cuong Le on

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Topics: Citrix Virtualisation

XenApp 6.5 Hosted Shared Desktop sizing example

Posted by Cuong Le on

In this blog series I’m taking a look at scalability considerations for XenApp 6.5 Hosted Shared Desktops, specifically:

  1. How to estimate XenApp 6.5 Hosted Shared Desktop scalability
  2. What’s the optimal XenApp 6.5 VM specification?
  3. XenApp 6.5 Hosted Shared Desktop sizing example

My last post provided guidance on the optimal XenApp virtual machine specification.  Now in the last post of the series, I’m going to walk through an example sizing exercise.

Scenario

Company ABC recently completed a user segmentation exercise.  The following table includes 8 user groups that have been identified as good candidates for a Hosted Shared Desktop.  None of these user groups requires the ability to install applications or the ability to customize their desktop beyond profile based changes.  Three separate Provisioning Services images will be created due to application compatibility conflicts identified by Citrix AppDNA.

XenApp 6.5, xenapp, XenApp 6.5 Hosted Shared Desktop, sizing

With Hosted Shared Desktops, it is important to consider the ‘Maximum Number of Concurrent Users’ column rather than the ‘Total Number of Users’ column.  Sizing the environment for concurrency rather than the total number of users will help to reduce infrastructure costs without affecting performance or availability.

Sufficient redundancy should be incorporated into the sizing estimate so that a single XenApp server or virtualization host failure does not affect the total number of concurrent users that can be supported (n+1).

Company ABC wishes to use their standard hardware specification – 2 sockets x 8 physical cores (16 physical cores / 32 virtual cores) with 128GB of memory.  Citrix XenServer will be used.

Number of XenApp Virtual Machines

Based on the scenario described above we need to size the Hosted Shared Desktop environment so that it can support 750 light users and 1,100 normal users.  Since multiple Provisioning Services images are required, we’ll need to calculate the number of virtual machines required for each one.

First, we need to identify two values from the second blog post in this series:

  1. Value for converting light users into normal users (0.5)
  2. Number of normal users that can be hosted on a single XenApp server virtual machine when using a 2 socket virtualization host (24)

Image 1 (700 light users & 50 normal users)

Step 1: Convert all users to a normal workload

      • 700 light users * 0.5 (from blog 2) = 350 normal users
      • 350 normal users + 50 normal users = 400 normal users

Step 2: Determine number of XenApp virtual machines

      • 400 normal users / 24 = 17 XenApp virtual machines
      • 17 XenApp servers + 1 server for high availability (n+1) = 18 XenApp servers

Image 2 (50 light users & 750 normal users)

Step 1: Convert all users to a normal workload

      • 50 light users * 0.5 = 25 normal users
      • 750 normal users + 25 normal users = 775 normal users

Step 2: Determine number of XenApp virtual machines

      • 775 normal users / 24 =  33 XenApp virtual machines
      • 33 XenApp servers + 1 server for high availability (n+1) = 34 XenApp servers

Image 3 (300 normal users)

Step 1: Convert all users to a normal workload

      • Not necessary as all users are already normal

Step 2: Determine number of XenApp virtual machines

      • 300 normal users / 24 = 13 XenApp virtual machines
      • 13 XenApp servers + 1 server for high availability (n+1) = 14 XenApp servers

Therefore, a total of 18 + 34 +14 = 66 XenApp virtual machines will be required.

Number of Virtualization Hosts

If we refer back to the second blog post in this series, it tells us that each 32 virtual core server with 128GB of RAM can support 8 x 4 vCPU XenApp server virtual machines:

32 virtual cores / 4 virtual cores per XenApp virtual machine = 8 XenApp servers per virtualization host

Therefore, we will need a total of 9 XenServer hosts to support 66 XenApp server virtual machines:

66 XenApp server virtual machines / 8 virtual machines per XenServer host = 9 virtualization hosts

As n+1 high availability is required we need to increase the number of XenServer virtualization hosts required to 10.  The XenApp load balancing functionality will be used to distribute users between the XenApp virtual servers in each worker group.

Memory Requirements

Referring back to the second blog post in the series, it tells us that each XenApp server on a 2 socket virtualization host typically requires 12GB of memory.  Therefore, 8 virtual XenApp servers x 12GB = 96GB.  We also need to reserve an additional 752MB for XenServer.  Because we have 31GB of physical memory left over, we’ll increase the memory allocated to each XenApp server by 3.5GB to 15.5GB – just in case it is required.

Disk Input / Output Operations per Second

If we refer back to the second blog post in this series, it tells us that each light user requires 2 steady state IOPS and each normal user requires 4 steady state IOPS.

Local Storage

It is difficult to estimate IOPS per XenApp server for local storage when using mixed workloads because we don’t know how the different workload types will be distributed across the virtualization hosts available.  Therefore, we should estimate a worst case scenario, which in this case is a normal user:

24 normal users per XenApp virtual machine x 4 IOPS = 96 steady state IOPS per virtual machine

8 XenApp server virtual machines per virtualization host x 96 steady state IOPS = 768 steady state IOPS per virtualization host

To achieve this number of IOPS on local storage (spinning disks), we’re going to need multiple disks in a RAID 10 configuration and a battery backed write-back cache.  With the help of a 1GB plus cache we’ll probably need at least 4 local disks, 6 to be safe.

Shared Storage

The shared storage solution will need to be capable of supporting a total of:

750 light users x 2 IOPS = 1,500 steady state IOPS

1,100 normal users x 4 IOPS = 4,400 steady state IOPS

1,500 + 4,400 = 5,900 steady state IOPS

And that’s the final step in this sample exercise. I hope this helped to explain how to size the hardware requirements for Hosted Shared Desktops.

Source: Citrix's Blog

Thank you for reading and look forward to your comments. Visit our website to find out more about Citrix Virtualisation Solutions.

Check out Citrix Virtualisation Solutions
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Topics: Citrix Virtualisation

Estimating XenApp 6.5 Hosted Shared Desktop Scalability

Posted by Cuong Le on

In this blog series I’m going to take a look at some of the scalability considerations for XenApp 6.5, including:

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Topics: Citrix Virtualisation

What’s the optimal XenApp 6.5 VM configuration?

Posted by Cuong Le on

In this blog series I’m taking a look at scalability considerations for XenApp 6.5, specifically:

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Topics: Citrix Virtualisation

Virtualizing your desktops? Six experts share their advice

Posted by Cuong Le on

Virtualizing your desktops is one of the biggest transformations you’re likely to come across in your career as an IT professional.

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Topics: Citrix Virtualisation

Adobe Acrobat XI Pro is Citrix Ready now

Posted by Cuong Le on

Adobe Acrobat XI Pro is Citrix Ready now

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Topics: Citrix Virtualisation

Adobe Acrobat XI Standard is Citrix Ready now

Posted by Cuong Le on

Adobe Acrobat XI Standard is Citrix Ready now

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Topics: Citrix Virtualisation

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