Citrix XenApp “Iron Cove” 6.5 Tech. Preview (Part.1)

Citrix XenApp “Iron Cove” 6.5 Tech. Preview (Part.1)
Citrix XenApp “Iron Cove” 6.5 Tech. Preview (Part.2)
Citrix XenApp “Iron Cove” 6.5 Tech. Preview (Part.3)

A new release of Citrix XenApp is available for download, this is a Tech Preview of Citrix XenApp 6.5, code name “Iron Cove”, you can download it HERE (MyCitrix account required) This version of XenApp is part of Desktop Virtualization Tech Preview available at the same address.

Here is what’s new in this release :

  • Server Platform Support
    The XenApp Technical Preview software can be installed on the following platforms. For all system requirements, see System Requirements.

    • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2
    • Microsoft Windows Server 20008 R2 Service Pack 1
  • Windows Desktop Experience Integration Installed by default when installing the XenApp server role, this feature provides a Windows 7 look and feel including desktop customization. PowerShell script options enable administrators to control desktop and environment defaults while allowing end users to customize their desktops.When installed and enabled, this feature also removes the Windows Server Manager Console from the XenApp server’s toolbar and relocates the Citrix XenApp administrative tools such as the AppCenter to the Start menu’s Administrative Tools\Citrix folder. See Delivering XenApp to Software Services Subscribers for more information.
  • Citrix AppCenter The AppCenter provides a streamlined interface for performing management functions. From the AppCenter, you can manage components administered through other Citrix products, such as Citrix Secure Access and Citrix Single Sign-On. For Citrix XenApp, you can configure and monitor servers, server farms, published resources, and sessions.
  • Session Prelaunch, Session Linger, and Fast Reconnect This collection of features improves the user experience by eliminating delays when launching and maintaining sessions. By using configurable Session Prelaunch policy settings, a session is started automatically when a user logs on to the farm. By implementing Session Linger policy settings, sessions remain alive for a configurable period before termination, rather than terminating when users close applications.Fast Reconnect, built into XenApp Technical Preview and requiring no configuration, helps minimize delays when users reconnect to existing sessions.
  • Citrix HDX Enhancements
  • Migration Center with Graphical User Interface With the choice of using a PowerShell cmdlet command line or graphical user interface, XenApp administrators can import application, folder, server configuration, and other XenApp object types from farms running previous versions of XenApp into XenApp Technical Preview farms. See XenApp Migration Center for requirement and installation information.
  • Improved Performance for Pooled Desktops Application launch time in pooled desktop environments is improved through the use of virtual hard disks. Using the Streaming Profiler, virtual hard disks can be created when profiling an application. When the application is launched for the first time, the virtual hard disk is mounted and all the profile contents are copied to the virtual hard disk. For all subsequent launches, the application is launched from the virtual hard disk, resulting in a speedier launch.
  • Printing Optimization The XenApp Technical Preview printing features include improved print session performance, lower bandwidth required for printing, and improved user experience when printing to redirected client printers. Universal Printing policy settings enable the administrator to control print quality, spooling, and optimization defaults. See the printing topics in Manage of this technical preview documentation for more information.

I installed it in my lab so if you don’t have time to do it on your side then you’ll know how it looks like :

And now the two roles are added, a reboot is required. A new role has been introduce in XenApp Iron Cove, “Windows Desktop Experience Integration”, it simply adds the Desktop Experience feature built-in Windows 2008 R2. After the reboot the wizard launch again to prompt to resume the installation :

The installation is over, there is not a lot of change if we compare to Citrix XenApp 6 install. Now this is configuration :

As you can see, now we have choice with the licensing model we have to chose, XenApp, XenDesktop CCU, XenDesktop User/Device.

And the last reboot before having Citrix XenApp 6.5 “Iron Cove” Tech Preview up and running. In the second part of this blog, I will cover the new features I think are the most important like session prelaunch, fast reconnect session linger, the new migration tool and the HDX enhancement.

Sources :
Citrix XenApp Tech Preview eDocs

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