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Citrix Nerds will be glad to assist your organization in building XenDesktop infrastructure on VMware ESXi, Citrix XenServer or Microsoft Hyper-V platforms.
Professional services are available during standard business hours at a rate of $150 per hour or a fixed project cost of $1000.
We can assist in selecting appropriate hardware and software to purchase.
These services are economically tailored for organizations deploying 10-100 desktops using local disk storage instead of SAN disk storage.
Hardware recommendations range from used HP DL380 G6's for around $500 each to new HP DL380 G9's or Dell R730's for around $5,000 each
or Cisco UCS B220 blades.
Naturally if you have a Nimble SAN, NetApp SAN, Pure Storage SAN or some other high performance SAN and top notch server hardware, we'd be happy to work with it as well.
What to expect:
As long as the server has power and network connectivity, an engineer can assist with installation of VMware, XenServer or Hyper-V hypervisors using remote access like ILO or DRAC.
The VMware, XenServer or Hyper-V management console can be installed on a local Windows desktop and used to create the required XenDesktop server VM's.
To install the XenDesktop Delivery controller, a vanilla Windows 2008 R2 SP1 server or Windows 2012 R2 Server is required as part of a domain and either a local SQL Express database or some other SQL database on the network.
The next step is to create a generic Windows 7, Windows 8.x or Windows 10 Professional / Enterprise virtual machine using an ISO for media, typically with 30-40gb disk and 4gb-8gb RAM.
The virtual machine will be joined to the Windows domain and Active Directory, VMware tools, XenServer tools or Hyper-V integration services will be installed and finally the Virtual Delivery Agent (VDA) will be installed.
Using the XenDesktop management console a test pool will be created and populated with a few replica's of the master desktop VM and made available via the Storefront web based portal.
The engineer will assist with installation of a few basic standard productivity applications, like MS-Office and Adobe Acrobat plus adjust User Account Controls, Firewall settings, etc. and then update the replica's from the master.
Typically these days access to the virtual desktop is available on the public Internet, so an SSL certificate will be required on a Netscaler Access Gateway and the Storefront server.
Depending on the sort of devices using XenDesktop, appropriate SSL certificates will be purchased.
Standard supported devices include Windows, MacBooks, iPad, iPhone, Android, Google Chromebooks, Blackberry, Windows Mobile, Linux, Umbunto.
Scope of work
- The engineer will work with the client via GoToMeeting to install VMware ESXi 6.5, XenServer 7.1 or Hyper-V on up to two physical servers via ILO or DRAC.
- The engineer will configure a cluster in VMware, create a pool in XenServer or create a pool in Hyper-V.
- The engineer will build a vanilla Windows 2008 R2 server using software media from Microsoft which automatically includes Service Pack 1 or Windows 2012 R2 server and start Windows updates.
- The engineer will join the Windows 2008 R2 server or Windows 2012 R2 server to an existing Microsoft Active Directory domain and take a base snapshot of the virtual server.
- The client will be responsible for providing appropriate local administrator or domain administrator level access to required servers, meaning entering credentials but not giving them to the engineer.
- If the client has an existing SQL server and the client requests the Citrix database be stored on this, then the engineer will create the three databases required for Site, Monitoring and Logging using the XenDesktop Studio configuration wizard.
- If the client does not have an existing SQL server and the client requests the Citrix database be stored on a SQL Express database, then the engineer will install SQL Express from the XenDesktop media, enable TCP/IP access, install SQL Management console, and use the XenDesktop Studio to create a databases for Site, Monitoring and Logging.
- The engineer will install XenDesktop on the Windows 2008 R2 server or Windows 2012 R2 server and configure it to work with either VMware, XenServer or Hyper-V.
- The engineer will work with the client to download the latest Citrix license server software from the MyCitrix portal and install it on a designated server.
- The engineer will work with the client to download the appropriate Citrix licenses from the MyCitrix portal and install them on the license server.
- If licenses have not yet been purchased or are not available for installation, then the XenDesktop will function in trial mode for 30 days.
- The engineer will build a vanilla Windows 7, 8.x or 10 Desktop, install VMware tools, XenServer tools or Microsoft integration services and join the workstation to the domain, run Windows updates and install the XenDesktop virtual delivery agent.
- The engineer will test basic access to the XenDesktop environment using the standard Citrix storefront web based interface portal.
- If access from the public Internet is required by the client and TCP ports 80 and 443 are open on the firewall, then the engineer will deploy a Netscaler VPX on the hypervisor and configure it to work with an approved SSL Certificate Authority. Citrix Nerds regularly uses Rapid SSL for Windows, MAC, iPad, iPhone and Android access.
- The engineer will work with the client to generate a Certificate Request and submit it to a Certificate provider.
- The client will be responsible for purchasing an SSL certificate.
- The client will need to have access to the domain authorization email to approve the certificate request.
- The client will be responsible for having a public DNS record for the SSL certificate, something like citrix.mycompany.com resolving to an IP which points to the Citrix Secure Gateway and the Web Interface server.
- The engineer will configure the Citrix Storefront web based portal and Netscaler VPX to work on the public Internet and internal Local Area Network.
- The engineer will configure the Citrix Storefront web based portal to pull Citrix Receiver clients from the client webserver and not redirect to the Citrix website.
- The engineer will create an appropriate load balancer for the Citrix Farm as well as create a standard default printer policy.
- The engineer will create a catalog in XenDesktop using the master image and create several replica's and grant users access
- The engineer will show the client how to update the master image and replica's using the XenDesktop management console.
- The engineer will give the client any passwords specifically used during the build process and any non-default settings.
- The client will be responsible for having properly functioning server hardware that is not over utilized.
- Generally the basic build process takes around 6 hours and the engineer expects the client to be available to supervise the work performed.
- The engineer will show the client how to create snapshots of all XenDesktop related infrastructure and perform a backup to local or network disk storage.
- Labor is generally scheduled in advance and is performed during standard business hours. Additional costs may be charged if labor is performed during non-standard business hours.
- In rare instances the engineer may need to reschedule the build process if an emergency situation occurs that calls the engineer away.