Monthly Archives: April 2011

XenServer Build on HP Hardware

XenServer Build

BIOS Settings

Disable the Following:

Turbo Boost

Set Power Management to Performance

Under the following “Power, Advanced Power, Minimum Processor Idle Power State”

  • Under Power Management Disable ALL C-States

HP power regulator

  • OS Control Mode.

Build RAID

To get the RAID Controller menu on post press F8 this will load the LightOut configuration

Exit out, and now you should see the RAID being initialized. Press F8 to run the RAID Configuration utility

Create Logical Drive

RAID 1+0, No hot spare and ALL Drives are part of the RAID.

XenServer Install

Verified Media

Local Disk Thin Provisioned Optimized

Password “Choose one”

Eth0 – Auto

Hostname Xen01, xen02, xen03, etc…. xen06

DNS – auto

America Whatever country you want

Los Angeles Whatever Time Zone is Closest you want

Manual Time entry


Set time

Remove media and Reboot

BURN IN Atleast 2-5 days.


XenDesktop 5 Update

So just a quick write up… One of these days I actually will do a FULL write up on all the new Features of XenDesktop 5.

So far a few things to note…

New Power Management Features!  You can now adjust the Idle Desktop’s by hour.  So you can light up 10 between 6am – 7am, drop down to 5 for 8am – 9am and back up around 1pm!  Pretty sweet to really get the most out of your infrastructure.

Power Management: You can now use the XenDesktop console to manage Idle Times, and what to do with a disconnected session.

Citrix Policy: You can now adjust FPS via Policy instead of Registry hack.

Quick Deploy… This is a really slick feature, when used with Thin Provisioned Storage.

Quick Deploy: Using Local Storage, once you add ALL SR’s to the Host connection you can easily keep everything across multiple Local SR’s up-to-date with one base image, just a side note it can take awhile depending on network speeds and how many XenServers/Local SR’s you have.

Using Pooled Mode updating images can’t be easier, Simply update the base image, create a Snapshot, and run the Update Machine wizard, wait and done!

Like I said just a quick update, and hopefully this week I will do a full write-up

Thanks for reading

XenDesktop 5!

Starting this project out right.  XenServer 5.6 FP1 and XenDesktop 5.  And wow XenDesktop 5 way different and so far way better… Just the only gotcha so far is DON’T go with 2008 Native Active Directory… YOU WILL HAVE ISSUES AKA DOESN’T work.  Other then that minor issue everything is cruising right along.  2 of 6 XenServers, and 10 of 400 Desktops rocking.  Now for the fun testing 5 different thin clients.

Will more details to come.  Thanks for reading.

Backup’s, Recovery, and Sync’ing

So I am just letting people know what I use but would love to hear from all of you what others use.

I use a combo of applications, one is Live Mesh, I use this in a few ways, I use it to sync ALL my photo’s between my computers (bypass Skydrive), I then sync up a lot of my Documents, this I do utilize the SkyDrive feature.  Second I use CrashPlan bypassing the “Cloud” I use it by having a Server with 1TB drive, and lastly I use Acronis True Image for weekly/monthly backups.  I will be also be creating a few more backup points right now I only backup my CrashPlan to one Server that is located at my house, but will be soon backing up to a second site. I will also creating a Live Mesh client at my second site to make sure I have all my data even in the event of total lost of my house!  The main reason for using True Image is for extremely fast recovery in case of total lost…

One down side to running multiple backup type applications means more space on the backend as you are backing up are data three times.  But this does give you multiple ways to recover in case of minor to major failures.  So CrashPlan and LiveMesh are free… You can pay for “Cloud” space for CrashPlan.  Acronis is worth every cent…

Thanks for reading and please comment on how you handle backups.

XenServer 5.6 FP1!!!

So far still holding true to the Ten to Xen, and really like the “Easy Button” they have now for Thin Provisioned SR’s.  First boot takes a little longer then one would expect but afterwards it is about the same as 5.6. I am still disabling the following just because I had to with 5.6.

Disable ALL C-States

Power Management Disable or set to OS Control Mode

Power Management Performance if there are multiple places to configure.

Thanks for reading more to come on XenDesktop 5! As this project continues…

Starting a New XenDesktop Project!

Tomorrow I will be starting a new XenDesktop Project!  XenDesktop 5 running on XenServer 5.6 FR1… The Current XenDesktop Deployment is humming right along… We are sitting at 300 users, and growing everyday.  The infrastructure is built to handle over 1000 Desktops and built to expand to 5000 with just XenServer adds.

This new Project is a little smaller but I get to play with all the new shiny tech.  More to come tomorrow, as I pre-build the infrastructure, now the only issue is storage…

Streaming Apps

Ok so I forgot to but this info in earlier posts so here is another quick note:

For Applications with Service’s you will need to create a White List for them if they are not digitally signed.  Here is how to do that…

hklmSoftwareCitrixRade add AppHubWhiteList  REG_SZ  Value = servername Some Examples would include serverx;servery Notice that there are NO spaces between them, if you are using HTTP or HTTPS you will need to include them example http://serverX;https://serverY

Now if your Application keeps trying to invoke MSI’s you will need to add the following: 0 = Disabled and 1 = enabled (Default)

hklmsoftwarewow64CitrixStreamingHookAppInit_DllsCtxSbxHook  Add Dword  Hookmsi set to 0

hklmsoftwarewow64CitrixStreamingHook64AppInit_DllsCtxSbxHook  Add Dword  Hookmsi set to 0

Ok that is it for today I will post again when I get Visio2010 working on a consistent bases.

Thanks for reading.

Health Checks, Monitors, and Alerts

Here are a few of the Power Shell Scripts I have wrote for checking varies components that XenDesktop and Provisioning Services need to operate.   You should find the Scripts attached below.  Note you will have to install the SDK’s for both XenServer and XenDesktop.  Also note that the XenServer 5.6 SDK’s do not work on Windows 2008 R2 (yet) I am not sure about the XenDesktop SDK’s

More to come…

Thanks for reading.  And Stay tuned for more







XenServer 5.6

Just a quick note.  Found this one the hard way, Like usual! There is a known issue “not documented” with XenServer 5.6 and C-States, + Power management.  Also Turbo Boost.  This NEEDS to be Disabled. This is more documented in 5.6 FR1.  If you are experiencing random Pool Master lock ups, Freezes, or Reboots the above is most likely the cause.  Here is the link to the Citrix KB article .

XenDesktop Project… Starting!

Oh yeah XenDesktop to the MAX! We have been in the planning phase for quite some time as deploying over 5000 virtual desktops is a little bit of a change and challenge.

So first had to decided on Virtualization Platform… Do we add to the existing VMWare ESX environment or build a new one? After many talks New one it is, and XenServer 5.6 was the choice.  Second decision, Storage? Again do we utilize existing infrastructure or build out a new one?  Build a new one that is going to be dedicated to XenDesktop.  Now time to prove all this… Pretty simple with XenServer and their true saying 10 til Xen!  Within about 2 hours the first Win7 box was getting its final make over. vDisk provisioned and once I get the DHCP scope created and device’s MAC addresses allowed on the network, we will have about 100 Desktops rocking!

More to come as the projects continues…

Posted in Citrix, Provisioning Server, Provisioning Services, PVS, Virualization, XenDesktop, XenServer

Tagged Citrix, Provisioning Server, Provisioning Services, PVS, Virualization, XenDesktop, XenServer


XenDesktop Project… Keep Posted!

Posted on July 5, 2010 by ntcrash| Leave a comment

Just about to start a small XenDesktop project with only about 5000 XenDesktop’s.  Most likely will be building a small XenServer farm to support it!  More to come on the challenges, tweaks, and work-a-rounds as they come… Going to be fun.

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