Cloudify my lab with Windows Azure 13 Comments

As I got an unlimited access to Windows Azure I wanted to check out how I could extend my lab into it and use it to store VMs workload (at first). Here what you need : Citrix NetScaler VPX (tested with NS10.1: Build 122.17.nc & NS10.1: Build 123.9.nc) Windows Azure Access Homelab (running on vSphere 5.5) Of course, you need licence for everything... Considerations : Before configuring a CloudBridge tunnel between a CloudBridge appliance in datacenter and  Microsoft Azure, consider the following points: The CloudBridge appliance must have a public facing IPv4 address (type SNIP) to use as a tunnel end-point address for the CloudBridge tunnel. Also, the CloudBridge appliance should not be behind a NAT device. (or you'll have to setup a route for your LAN computers, I'm explaining how to at the end of this blog) Azure supports the following IPSec settings for a CloudBridge tunnel. Therefore, you must specify the same IPSec settings while configuring the CloudBridge appliance for the CloudBridge tunnel. IKE version = v1 Encryption algorithm = AES Hash algorithm = HMAC SHA1  You must configure the firewall in the datacenter edge to allow the following. Any UDP packets for port 500 Any UDP packets for port 4500 Any ESP (IP protocol number 50) packets IKE re-keying, which is renegotiation of new cryptographic keys between the CloudBridge tunnel end points to establish new SAs, is not supported. When the Security Associations  (SAs) expire, the tunnel goes into the DOWN state. Therefore, you must set a very large value for the lifetimes of SAs. You must configure Microsoft Azure before specifying the tunnel configuration on the CloudBridge appliance, because the public IP address of the Azure end (gateway) of the tunnel, and the PSK, are automatically generated when you set up the tunnel configuration in Azure. You need this information for specifying the tunnel configuration on the CloudBridge appliance. First thing first, you need to use your Windows Azure account and follow the next step to begin to configure the IPSec tunnel by creating a local network In the left pane, click NETWORKS. In the lower left-hand corner of the screen, click + NEW. In the NEW navigation pane, click NETWORK, then click VIRTUAL NETWORK, and then click ADD LOCAL NETWORK. In the ADD A LOCAL NETWORK wizard, in the specify your local network details screen, set the following parameters: NAME  VPN DEVICE IP ADDRESS In the lower right corner of the screen,…

VDI, ok ? What’s next ? 58 Comments

This blog is a follow up to the discussion we had in Vienna during the Geek Speak session at E2E event. I had to leave to catch my flight back to France but this discussion was very interesting and I though about it during all my travel time... I'm still on it writing this blog VDI, Desktops... Shared, remote, dedicated, pooled and/or virtual VDI gives the possibility to deliver desktops to everyone, everywhere. Let's say it, in most of the company, users still needs a desktop, a Microsoft desktop; why's that ? Just because they are used to access a Microsoft Windows desktop at home and during the last 20 years we didn't deliver application using another way. Desktop rules the application access, at least until 3/4 years ago when smart phone, tablet / iPad came to everyone's life and change Microsoft Desktop user's life by accessing directly an application. Everyone is getting used to access applications without going through a Microsoft Windows desktop and I think that will change a lot of things within 5 years regarding the way we deliver an environment to our users. Desktop vs Application Why are we accessing a desktop today ? Mainly to open application and being able to switch from a windows to another, copy and past between applications etc. Going from this statement, which I think everyone will agree, why do we need this layer (Microsoft Desktop) to access applications ? As I mentioned before, we have habits and we are used to open our application through a Microsoft Desktop, I remember tried to publish an Internet Explorer few years ago on thin client, on the Web Interface, only application were published, no desktop at all; we had to fall back and published a desktop again because user experience was different, users we used to click to switch between applications instead of using alt-tab key. The amount of memory we tried to save by not publishing a desktop was quiet a lot and as we had to give a desktop back, we had to calcul again all the memory consume per user for a desktop and add more servers according to our results. As you can notice in the graph above, the difference between a seamless published Excel 2010 and a desktop (XenApp 6.5 with Excel 2010) is double. As we needed to publish desktop instead of only using published application, we had…

Citrix Synergy San Francisco 2012 highlights 7 Comments

Every year I cross half of the planet to go over the United States in San Francisco to attend Citrix Synergy event. This is every time very exciting, meeting new people, friends, geeks and of course doing some business. This year was different as I didn't had time to go to all the session I planned to attend due to an heavy but very pleasant schedule with CTPs. I had time to attend the keynotes and see what Citrix was ready to unleash for this major virtualization event, I will sum up everything that I think are the key points for the future of our job. The main topic of keynote since two years ago is the Cloud, Personal, Private or Public, the Cloud is everywhere; look I even put an upper case when I write Cloud :) GoTo products : GoToAssist have reach 50M sessions, translated to 15 languages with a  fastest time to service. GoToAssist for iPad and now for Android are available for free. You can download the Android app here :  [here] The mobile workstyle with GoToMeeting to work with anyone anywhere across any device gets HD faces available on iPad today. Wyse : After Wyse Xenith (zero client ) Wyse announced Xentih 2 [link] which is (supposed) to be  40% faster, more secure, true 720P with multi-monitor support. Of course no one missed the fact Wyse has been acquired by Dell [link] HP : HP announce one of the coolest hardware during this Synergy, the HP t410 All-in-one, System on a chip, HDX ready and PoE (Power over Ethernet) consuming only 13watt, this is cool for a 18,5 inch screen. If you don't use PoE, you can still use a regular power cord. This is not a revolution but an evolution, this zero client screen have a price, 429$ Specifications : [link] Citrix VDI-in-a-Box Now with a full HDX experience, and scale like lego block. What's really new is you can upgrade from VDI-in-a-Box to XenDesktop licenses. Citrix VDI-in-a-Box won the best of Interrop Award 2012 in cloud computing and virtualization category [link] Dell DVS simplified powered by VDI-in-a-Box appear to be a good solution for SMB who need fast deployment [link]   AppDNA AppDNA introduce new features / module like physical to virtual transition,  Windows OS and browser upgrades with a new version released v6.1 [link]   Citrix XenClient, acquisition of Virtual Computer Virtual…

That was a very nice and very busy event, and I'm very happy to have this chance to meet so many nice people from all around the world. It was very nice to speak and exchange with absolutly all of you. Once again I learned so many things my brain is still smoking from last week. With my fellow friends and CTP Chris Rogers et Joseph Melika we made a short appearance on Citrix TV : // A soon coming blog will present you the Synergy focus point I did to try to make things clear a get the head of this event with the main and most important information.

Citrix released few days ago the first public technical preview for Citrix ShareFile part of the Follow me Data strategy announced by Citrix CEO during last Synergy in Barcelona. You can download Windows, Mac, Android and iOS clients and register here : link Citrix acquired ShareFile last year in October 2011 (link) less than six months later we have a Technical Preview to check out. What is Citrix ShareFile ? This is an "add-on / plugin" for Citrix Receiver (iOS, Mac, Windows, Android) and it allows you to access, share centralized data and request files from all your devices. This is a "Dropbox like" but design to be enterprise ready. Citrix likes to compare ShareFile to Apple iCloud but it's not so "iCloud" because you can control what you want to share, you can easily chose what needs to be "synchronized" across all your devices. With iCloud, I know all my music is in iMatch but I would have like to keep private some of it on my computer, now everything is somewhere in the Apple iCloud... Make common data services like search, share, sync, secure, authenticate, open and preview available to a wide range of applications, services and use cases through a set of open APIs. Extend secure data sharing services to new and existing apps stored in public and private clouds and accessed from millions of different business and consumer devices. Connect data seamlessly to the way people collaborate today, ensuring that the right documents and files are always accessible when needed, and always up to date. Where my data, personal and professional are stored ? With this Technical Preview, all your files are stored "in the Cloud" within the Citrix ShareFile infrastructure. I remember what I saw last October (2011) at Synergy in Barcelona we should be able to store data in our own datacenter. I don't know any detail yet but this is the feature that will kill DropBox (for the companies that use it) Local : Yes, the data is store on you devices, Windows and Mac in a dedicated folder but not for the iOS and Android devices which you need to download every time you want to look at a ShareFile document. Datacenter : Not yet (in the Tech. Prev.) Cloud : Yes, everything is already stored within the Citrix ShareFile infrastructure I also remember this slide i saw during Mark T (Citrix…