I recently tried the new XenServer on line technical training. It’s great. Not everyone has the hardware to install XenServer. The on line training will get you started with XenServer quickly.  I heard the training is available for free to XenServer partners. For more details and to sign up please see Citrix education web site

You will even be able to experience with the “10 minutes to Xen” joy by installing XenServer from scratch.

One thing I found most valuable in this training is that it allows me to try XenMotion myself. XenMotion which requires shared storage which I currently don’t have in my lab. I’ve seen demos of XenMotion. But it’s really cool to be able to try it myself.

In general the step by step instructions are very good although I did find the following that may require some clarification. It seems you will need to install xen tool into the vm first to enable xenmotion. Also you may need to remove network0 and replace it with the vlan created in the first step.  Neither seems to be in the instruction.  I could have missed something.

Anyway I thought I should share my experience.

If you are new to XenServer, it may work best if you follow the lab orders. However if you would like to repeat labs or jump to the labs you are interested, you can do so too. Each lab will independently have everything you need to complete the lab.

Performance is generally good because it uses ICA. RDP also seems to be used to allow connection to XP desktops. When XenDesktop becomes ready, I am sure the performance will be even better. The virtual machine console portion seems to be a little bit sluggish. But it is probably because VNC is involved on top of ICA and RDP. You can experience yourself the performance difference between ICA and other display protocols.

You can click the “Ask an Expert” button from within the course or labs and get a real live person to chat with.  It’s essentially a GoToAssist session. I didn’t notice this feature when I took the class though.

The training seems to be very popular. I had to try hard to get into the class although I work for Citrix. The citrix partners have priorities. The training is active only for 5 days. So be prepared.  

I wish more people could have access to such a training/demo. Citrix has a test drive program http://www.citrixtestdrive.com/testdrive/where  you can try the XenApp (formerly known as Presentation Server) over Internet. It would be nice to extend that program to XenServer. What do you think?

Enjoy your Xen experience if you can. Please let us know what you think. Survey: