What's new in XenDesktop 5.6

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What’s New in XenDesktop 5.6

XenDesktop 5.6 includes the following new features and enhancements:

  • Personal vDisk - This feature is a personalization solution for virtual desktops. Two new types of catalog allow you to preserve the assignment of users to desktops even when the disk is cleaned at restart; the same user is assigned the same desktop for later sessions. The new catalogs are pooled with personal vDisk (for pooled-static virtual desktops) that you manage with Desktop Studio andstreamed with personal vDisk that you manage with Provisioning Services. In addition, a dedicated storage disk is created, before logon, so users can store their data on the desktop, including any applications they install. For background information on this feature, see About Personal vDisks.New commands have also been added to the XenDesktop Software Development Kit (SDK) to support this feature.
  • System Center support - XenDesktop now supports Microsoft System Center 2012 Configuration Manager and Microsoft System Center 2012 Virtual Machine Manager.
  • Virtual Desktop Agent - Version 5.5.100 of the Virtual Desktop Agent is included in this release and fixes issues in the version included in XenDesktop 5.5.
  • Citrix Licensing - Citrix Licensing 11.10 lets you assign access to the License Administration Console using Active Directory Users and Groups.
  • Desktop Director - Desktop Director 2.1 supports personal vDisks and contains fixes since the last release. For more information, see the Desktop Director documentation.
  • Fixed issues - For information on the issues that have been fixed in this release, seeCTX124164.

Known Issues

The following known issues have been observed in this version of XenDesktop:

  • Smart card support is not available for virtual desktops running Windows XP 64-bit Edition. [LA1858]

  • If Microsoft Visual Studio is installed by an administrator on a master image, it may fail to start on virtual desktops that are created from the image. Reinstalling this application, updating the image, and restarting the desktops corrects this issue. [#0270259]

  • Desktop-background images (wallpapers) are lost when users switch between a desktop with a personal vDisk and a desktop without one. This issue occurs with Windows roaming profiles when users select images for the background. The issue does not occur with background colors. The workaround is to use profile management solutions, such as Citrix Profile management. [#0272970]

  • In some deployments involving Windows 7 virtual desktops with personal vDisks, users may notice that network drives are incorrectly displayed as offline, instead of unavailable, in Windows Explorer. These are deployments in which the Enable Offline Files policy is changed to Disable Offline Files in Microsoft Group Policy. To work around this issue, ensure that Disable Offline Files policy is applied on the master image before using it to create virtual desktops. [#0277774]

  • Desktop-background images (wallpapers) are lost when users switch between a desktop with a personal vDisk and a desktop without one. This issue occurs with Windows roaming profiles when users select images for the background. The issue does not occur with background colors. The workaround is to modify as follows the Registry on the desktop containing the personal vDisk, and to use a profile management solution, such as Citrix Profile management, to handle profiles stored on the desktop.

    Caution: Editing the Registry incorrectly can cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Citrix cannot guarantee that problems resulting from the incorrect use of Registry Editor can be solved. Use Registry Editor at your own risk. Be sure to back up the registry before you edit it.

    In HKLM\Software\Citrix\personal vDisk\Config, change the value of the EnableUserProfileRedirection key from 1 to 0 [#0272970]

  • Do not use Desktop Studio to administer a mixed-controller site. Desktop Studio displays misleading information in a mixed site and cannot be used to create and manage objects in it. For example, if you have two controllers but only upgrade one to XenDesktop 5.6, the Pooled with Personal vDisk catalog type appears in Desktop Studio but you cannot create virtual desktops with it. The workaround for this issue is to upgrade fully all controllers in the site before using Desktop Studio to manage it (and only to follow supported upgrade paths). [#0276786]

  • Citrix recommends planning your hypervisor hardware requirements so the reduction in CPU performance when personal vDisks are used does not detract from the user experience. The reduction is also affected, especially in large-scale deployments, by your choice of operating system (OS). For example, in some environments Windows 7 machines with personal vDisks significantly outperform the equivalent Windows XP machines, allowing more Windows 7 machines to be hosted on each hypervisor. Choosing that OS rather than Windows XP therefore means you purchase and maintain less hardware. Citrix continues to investigate differences in operating system performance and continues to optimize XenDesktop scalability. [#0284660, #0284706]

  • You may fail to create viable machines if a node in a Hyper-V cluster is paused or offline. In some scenarios, the Failover Cluster Manager Console shows that resources are allocated for machines but Microsoft System Center Virtual Machine Manager and XenDesktop cannot recognize them. To work around this issue, manually remove these resources using the Failover Cluster Manager Console and ensure all nodes are healthy (not paused or offline) before creating the machines again. [#285696]

  • The error “Citrix Personal vDisk failed to start” may be displayed on a desktop with a personal vDisk. If the error includes “Status code: 7” and “Error code: 0x2000000b”, this indicates that a master image has been distributed but the Virtual Hard Disk (VHD, part of the personal vDisk) is full. To work around this issue, on the image increase the percentage value of the registry key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Citrix\personal vDisk\Config\PercentOfPvDForApps, and redistribute the image. [#287292]

  • Auto Client Reconnect does not work on this release of XenDesktop. Citrix is actively pursuing a resolution to this issue. [#262575]

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