Jamie Baker, Sr. Escalation Engineer 

Without a doubt one of Citrix Technical Support’s top engineers is Jamie Baker. Jamie works with the Strategic Managed Accounts Resolution team, SMART, which handles 24 hour coverage on critical and high priority issues, and he also is a Subject Matter Expert, SME, in various areas such as Printing, Application Streaming and currently the XenDesktop, SME, for the SMART team. Jamie took a few moments out of his busy day of solving customer issues to answer some questions on the sessions that he’ll be presenting at Citrix TechEdge.

The sessions he’ll be covering are End-to-end virtualization with Citrix Delivery Center with a focus on XenDesktop, and then presenting an in-depth session on XenDesktop 3 architecture and design. TechEdge is the new name for the Citrix Support and Engineering Institute of Technology, CSEIT. The event is hosted by top Citrix Technical Support engineers at Citrix Summit and Synergy, and is the event for troubleshooting your Citrix Application Delivery environment

 Q. How has XenDesktop improved from a support perspective over the past year?

Jamie: The release of XenDesktop 3.0 has closed a lot of issues, added USB device support which was a big need for a lot of customers and provided pool management failover when using XenServer as the desktop hosting infrastructure. The new failover allows the administrator to configure multiple pool masters for the same XenServer pool in the XenDesktop Management Console and if the original XenServer pool master fails, the Pool Management service will fail over to the secondary pool master. This makes the product much more resilient by eliminating a single point of failure, which is always more supportable

Q. What XenDesktop and Citrix Delivery Center tips will attendees learn at your session this year?

Jamie: We will provide tips on both how to design your XenDesktop infrastructure to take advantage of the new features in XenDesktop 3.0 and how to implement those new features, including USB device support. We will also provide tips on how to configure XenDesktop to take advantage of the robust hosting infrastructure provided by XenServer.

The Citrix Delivery Center Session will highlight how each of the components of the Citrix Deliver Center can integrate to provide secure and robust access to desktops and applications. We’ll focus on each product and the features it brings specifically to complement the entire Citrix Delivery Center.

Q. What new tools or techniques are you using to troubleshoot XenDesktop?

Jamie: Besides from having a year’s more experience working with customer issues and the new products, we’ve developed our internal tools to more quickly identify XenDesktop issues. We’ve updated the CDFControl utility to allow for remote CDF trace on VDA and DDC machines. This allows us to more easily set up a diagnostic trace and resolve issues more quickly.

This year we’ve also stood up a public symbol server. This allows us to access more diagnostic data through system dumps and memory dumps without having to bring those dump files in house. In time sensitive situations, this can save us hours of time. It also allows customers and other vendors to diagnose issues from dump files more quickly.

Q. What types of cases have you worked on this past year? Why?

Jamie: For me, being on the critical situation team, I’ve focused on identifying single points of failure and issues that have the potential for wide impact. The pool management service’s ability to connect to a hosting infrastructure and to recover quickly in case of an issue with the infrastructure is the biggest issue we tackled this year. As mentioned above, we were able to build in failover when using XenServer infrastructure. The addition of HDX technology has improved multi-monitor display handling as well as USB device remoting and multi-media display.

About Jamie Baker

Jamie’s been with Citrix Systems for six years, and all of those with Citrix Technical Support. He started out as a first level frontline support engineer, supporting MetaFrameXP. After two years on the phones, he moved to the Escalation team, and a year later moved to the SMART team. Jamie is currently a Sr. Escalation Engineer, and holds certifications as a CCA in XenDesktop and XenApp, as well as a Windows MCSE.

When Jamie isn’t working, he loves to spend time with his wife and three year old twin daughters, exploring all the playgrounds that North Georgia has to offer. On Fall Sundays, you’ll find him watching the Philadelphia Eagles and trying desperately to control his emotions so he doesn’t scare the dog.

Do you have a XenDesktop troubleshooting area that you would like Jamie to focus on during his presentation? Leave a comment.

TechEdge 2009 sessions:

Want to learn more about TechEdge 2009, www.citrix.com/techedge. Stay tuned for our weekly close-up interviews on the TechEdge presenters.

Posts in this series:

  • Interview 1: Close-up with Jamie Baker