Citrix Receiver and plug-ins can create some confusion

There are quite a few methods to deliver applications and desktops to end users, in some cases multiple “correct” ways…this leads to some confusion.  There also are some new products (delivery services 1.0) that exist but have some limitations today…all good things to pay attention to … or better yet, use Lewan to pay attention to for you.

How-To Make XPe a View Appliance

I had a need recently to modify the behavior of a Windows XPe (embedded) device to act as a VMware View Appliance. The goal was to end up with a device which would boot and launch the View Client connect to the View Manager and challenge the user for their ID/Password. Then connect to a specific virtual desktop.

Some devices have a wizard for configuring exactly this behavior, however the device I’m working with seems to have no such feature.

This is just a little diferent from the ‘kiosk mode’ feature of View in that the View Client does challenge the user for their credentials rather than having the login credentials stored/passed to it.

Note, a variation on this idea could be used to make a repurposed desktop act as an appliance for either View or XenDesktop.

This could also be made a little prettier by using a .vbs script and wscript rather than the .bat file and cmd.exe.

1.) Disable File write filter
2.) Write batch/cmd file which launches View Client with appropriate parameters in a loop (points to VMware – View client accepts USB pass-through and desktop to launch from the command line).
3.) Modify for the auto-login user – hkcuSoftwareMicrosoftWindows NTCurrentVersionWinLogonShell to launch the batch/cmd file. You can do this using the ‘load hive’ feature of regedit running as the admin user.
4.) Logout as admin, let the auto-login login as user – test, test, test.
5.) Modify CMD launch properties to minimize the cmd window size.
6.) Kill the CMD process
7.) Logout of ‘user’ session (ctrl-alt-del)
8.) Enable File write filter

End result:
When the user logs in explorer.exe is never launched, and the view client presents it’s login challenge. When the view session terminates the .bat file re-launches the view client … forever.

Contents of Command file:
REM – ViewAppliance Shell Script
C:Program FilesVMwareVMware ViewClientBinwswc.exe -serverURL ViewManager -desktopName Destkop -connectUSBOnInsert true -connectUSBOnStartup true
goto START

Denver Citrix User Group meeting Feb 2, 2011


February 2, 2011


2:30pm – 6:30pm


Dave & Busters

2000 South Colorado Blvd Denver,CO 80222


Citrix recently held a Tron Legacy Desktop Virtualization event “Virtual Desktops: From Wow to How”. Now you can hear from Citrix customers how they moved their application and desktop virtualization projects from an idea to reality.

Please join Citrix, AppSense and triCerat at our upcoming User Group in Denver to discuss how you can go from Wow to How.

AppFresh Updates All Your Mac Apps from One, Unified Place

Mac OS X: The Mac App Store is great for providing all your app updates in one place, but if you’d prefer not to use it, free app AppFresh will keep all your downloaded apps updated from one single window.

Lifehacker has a great article on AppFresh, here:

AppFresh Download:

Seagate 500GB Hybrid 7200rpm and 4GB SSD Harddrive – Thoughts and Speed Results

My MacBook Pro came with a 500GB 5400 rpm drive stock. I was looking at upgrading to a faster drive. I looked at traditional 7200 rpm drives as well as SSD drives, which are still quite expensive for $/GB.

So not wanting to drop like $450 for a relatively decent size SSD drive, NewEgg recently had a 500GB “Hybrid” drive on sale for $99 so I took the leap. It is a Seagate drive which is a 500GB 7200 rpm drive but it also has a 4GB SSD/Flash component. It then has the ability to “learn” what you use the most, which it moves that data to the SSD area. In theory, this should give you an awesome performance enhancement while still keeping the $/GB price down.

Initially just working with the new drive “seems” faster. Knowing I wanted to compare the results, I noted the time it took to do different things that are normally drive intensive. So here’s my test results for both drives:

  Cold Boot to Login Login to Usable Win 7 VM Power up to usable
Old 5400rpm Stock Drive 1m 19s 1m 14s 2m 15s
New Hybrid Drive 1m 13s 1m 5s (1st time)

43s (2nd time)

1m 50s (1st time)

49s (2nd time)

42s (3rd time)

Note – The data on the old drive and the new drive is exactly the same. I cloned the old drive onto the new drive. And overall, it’s getting snappier, it seems, as I continue using it. The above numbers also show that it’s “learning” as well. So for me, it’s been awesome and I’d definitely recommend taking a look at this drive if you’re in the same situation.

Here’s the links to the drive that I got. I did get mine for $99 so perhaps they’ll go back on sale sometime soon.

Hope it’s helpful!

Our Blog – 2010 in Review

The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 100,000 times in 2010. If it were an exhibit at The Louvre Museum, it would take 4 days for that many people to see it.

In 2010, there were 260 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 366 posts. There were 172 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 35mb. That’s about 3 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was October 27th with 612 views. The most popular post that day was Release : VMware vSphere 4.1 and vCenter 4.1.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were,,,, and

Some visitors came searching, mostly for sas vs sata, exfat mac, vcenter 4.1, netbackup 7, and sparsever2backinginfo.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


Release : VMware vSphere 4.1 and vCenter 4.1 July 2010


VMware vSphere – Using VMware Converter to Import VM’s or VMDK’s From Other VMware Products December 2009


Sharing an External Drive Between a PC and a Mac, exFAT Discussion, Results October 2009


SAS vs. SATA Differences, Technology and Cost September 2009


How-To: Setup SNMP on ESX 3.5 Servers February 2009