Nutanix Acropolis with XenDesktop: 8 simple steps

Nutanix Acropolis

As I was going through cycles to deliver our next Reference Architecture for running Citrix workloads on Nutanix Acropolis hypervisor I realised that I didn’t capture the full steps to run Citrix XenDesktop on Nutanix Acropolis Hypervisor so this blogpost is have a workflow ready to make sure that you have all the steps covered to do a successful deployment.

In a fully integrated stack you can follow the reference architectures from Nutanix and Citrix and Reviewer guides from Citrix (which I strongly recommend reading as there is a lot of valuable information in these guides) but at this point in time Citrix XenDesktop on Acropolis Hypervisor has limited integration so I wanted to capture the high level steps to configure Citrix XenDesktop for Acropolis Hypervisor.

  1. Create a Master VM/Golden Image following your specifications (don’t forget to optimize your image)!
  2. Install the Citrix VDA configured to your XenDesktop Delivery Controller(s).
  3. Clone your Master VM/Golden image using ACLI.
  4. Create an unattended.xml that matches things like your AD domain name, username/password combinations, language settings etc.
  5. Run Sysprep as Microsoft requires an unique SSID per VM in MS Active Directory
  6. Create a Machine Catalog and add your unmanaged VMs to that machine catalog.
  7. Create your Delivery Group and provide access to your users to this delivery group.
  8. Configure Citrix StoreFront to provide access to these desktops.

In a simple visual it comes down to:

Nutanix Acropolis

The thing that stands out here is the fact that the automated provisioning isn’t included, that’s something we’re working on and to of course there are multiple ways to do the sysprep, so we started on some starting points on how you could achieve do sysprep in a programmable way:

Hopefully this will help you in configuring your environment to fully utilize the power of Nutanix Acropolis Hypervisor for your Citrix XenDesktop and/or XenApp environment.

Keep an eye on my blog for future integration as we’re about to show you more of our integration plans and I might be able to provide an early sneak peak.

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Kees Baggerman

Kees Baggerman is a Staff Solutions Architect for End User Computing at Nutanix. Kees has driven numerous Microsoft and Citrix, and RES infrastructures functional/technical designs, migrations, implementations engagements over the years.

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