Client side content fetching

By default when redirecting the execution of Flash content to the client, the Flash content is fetch from the client directly to the web server. This includes swf files as well as images, movies and any other type of resource that the Flash application requests. The following shows a diagram on how that works:

There is still communication between the end point and the virtual desktop via the ICA connection but this is mostly control information. The bulk of the content is transferred between the website and the end point. This is ideal if you want to optimize server usage. You can be playing a 1080p HD movie and the server will hardly be doing anything.
Some customers raised the issue that their end points don’t have access to the internet. In this case, the model in which the client goes to the web server does not work.

Server side content fetching

In the server side content fetching, the client does not reach out to the web server. The virtual desktop acts as a proxy and sends all resources via the ICA connection:

This model while it takes more resources on the virtual desktop, it enables end point with no access to the internet.

Configuring content fetching

Client side content fetching is enabled by default and you don’t need to do anything if this is the model you want to work with.
If you want to use server side content fetching you need the following:

  1. Download the 11.2.002 client from This is an updated client that supports this feature.
  2. Add rules using the server GPO for the urls you want to use server side content fetching. If you want to use it for all websites add one entry with the following: *
  3. Enable server side content fetching on the client using the client GPO

Platform Support

XenDesktop 4 supports this feature out of the box with the updated 11.2.002 client. XenApp 5 FP2 needs to be updated to enable server side content fetching (download).


I recommend you use server side content fetching only with managed devices when they don’t have access to the internet. In any other scenario, I recommend you use client side content fetching.