This guide demonstrates how to deploy Citrix NetScaler in conjunction with Citrix XenDesktop 7 with a focus on both simplicity in configuration and advanced features not easily delivered with other products. This guide shows how to provision the XenDesktop 7 infrastructure, the NetScaler appliance and NetScaler Insight Center services to extend Citrix virtual desktop infrastructure and services to remote users in small to medium-size enterprises.
Best end user experience: With an integrated Citrix solution for remote and portable workstyles, end users enjoy a seamless experience resulting in fewer help desk calls and reduced training needs. Citrix Receiver client software is installed on the user device (iPhone, Android phone, thin client) to allow users, by way of the NetScaler appliance delivering high availability, scale and security, to access their desktops, applications and data through Citrix StoreFront. StoreFront, which ships with XenDesktop 7, authenticates users to XenDesktop sites and Citrix XenApp farms, enumerating and aggregating available desktops and applications into stores that users can access through Citrix Receiver or Receiver for Web. The StoreFront database records details of users’ application subscriptions to enable synchronization of those applications across all their devices. Benefits of the NetScaler/StoreFront solution include one-click configuration for user setup, local and remote access, automatically provisioned applications, self-service simplicity, a consistent user experience across any device and persistent access to applications and desktops.
End-to-end application visibility: New NetScaler 10.1 with HDX Insight seamlessly integrates with Desktop Director to provide a single location for management and monitoring of the XenApp and XenDesktop infrastructure. IT teams can drill down into network protocols (primarily ICA) through Desktop Director to troubleshoot individual user issues from a single console. The AppFlow capability of NetScaler allows you to export this data to third-party tools such as Splunk for in-depth correlation, analysis and reporting. The reports generated by NetScaler InsightCenter, such as the applications and users consuming the most resources, can help IT determine peak usage and proactively allocate bandwidth accordingly. Response time measurements can help detect and resolve problems before a critical network or application failure occurs.
Enhanced security: By acting as a full proxy for ICA connections, NetScaler filters these connections before they hit the backend server, ensuring they are attack free. Proper integration with Secure Ticketing Authority (STA) prevents internal user and server data, including IP address information, from leaking. SmartAccess allows you to control access to published XenApp virtual applications and XenDesktop virtual desktops on a server through the use of NetScaler Access Gateway session policies. NetScaler Access Gateway is a full-featured SSL VPN that is an integral component of NetScaler. It gives administrators granular, application-level control while empowering users with remote access to their virtual desktops from anywhere.
End-to-end support from a single vendor: Integration between NetScaler and IT Desktop Director provides a single console for troubleshooting end-user issues concerning the network and desktops. It also helps lower support and training costs (TCO) in the long run and enables IT teams to stay abreast of product roadmap updates. Choosing one vendor instead of multiple providers prevents finger pointing on integration issues.