We decided to use this media to provide and share all answers from the XenClient MasterClass II, which took place on 11th Nov. 2010. First of all my apologies for the short interruption during the call due a internet connection issue at the place (hotel) I was when delivering the webcast.

As a general rule: It’s always good the check our forum, lots of information and discussions around XenClient.
Our product managers are reading the forum too and your questions might be answered quit quickly.

http://forums.citrix.com/category.jspa?categoryID=259

Organisational

Q: Will this webcast being recorded?

A: We tried to, but it wasn’t working well. I’ll re-record the presentation and share the link in this blog soon

Questions from the MasterClass

Q: Is the restrictions on hardware going to be reviewed to allow for a broader spectrum of equipment?

A: Yes, there are a # of things we’re doing there.  For example: a) Testing other devices between releases (we think many already work but we havnet tested yet); b) more support from OEM partners to take on testing; c) adding NVIDIA support in the future

Q: Which MAC-Adress (Host-OS, VM1, VM2,…) will bei checked in Enterprise Networks with 802.1x Authentication (MAC-Adress) ?

A: The MAC address of the XenClient host will be used.  Wireless networks are shared connections with the VMs being on an internal NAT

Q: Where are the differences between XenClient Express and the Buyable-One ?

A: The XC hypervisor is free to anyone.  XC Express gives you the right to use the back end Synchronizer to manage up to 10 XC devices for free; XD Ent and Plat licenses give you the ability to manage as many XC devices as you have XD Ent or Plat licenses

Q: is there a chance to get a betadownload of the nvidia-supporting version shown in Berlin(Synergy/Summit)

A: Not yet.  

Q: How does “in the future” concerning the nvidia support look in numbers? Q?/2011?

A: It’s on the roadmap

Q: I have a security question about 802.1x in XenClient. When user has two desktops : Company one , Home one. Lets assume that Home one its not secured. When company desktop will join switch port via 802.1x then Home desktop got access also ? Becase its same ethernet cabel. How to manage this ?

A: We’re working on network isolation by VM – It’s on the roadmap

Q: how i can change the port of the syncronizer url ?

A: This is not supported currently.  However, we are evaluating the feature to set the management port and data port that XC connects to as separate.

Q: The nvidia support, will it support the whole range of nvidia gpu’s or just the business (quadro) line?

A: Still being worked through, but the goal will be to focus on getting the broadest support possible

Q: You mentioned in “open services VM architecture” that will enable, for instance, outsourcing of anti-virus engine to a service VM. Will XenClient provide an API that such a service VM can use to to develop such introspection-based security products? If so, when do you expect it will be available? What kind of capabilities (e.g., guest memory, network, disk introspection) do you envision supporting?

A: This is on the roadmap, We’re looking to add support for such APIs over the next year. You will see capabilities for in-guest agents to get basic information about the VM, the XC host, and have some control such as power on the VM

Q: is it possible to do a p2v from my existing computer and then install XC, and then add the vm created to XC?

A: working on repurposing XenConvert to enable this for a future version (Note: I’ll publish a blog shortly about best practices on this)

Q: is there any possibility to delete users, groups, images and devices out of xen synchronizer?

A: not yet, targeted for next release…

Q: as i tried, it seems XC does not support memory share between VMs, am I right?

A: Correct…dynamic memory allocation.  This is on the roadmap

Q: Why do TPM and TXT have to be disabled? Do you anticipate supporting trusted boot (as Xen does) using the TPM in the future?

A: Yes, support for trusted boot of hypervisor, service vm and control domain is on the roadmap

Q: will there be an easy import export possibility without using synchronizer?

A: You can use Putty or SCP today for free. We’ll look at more elegant ways to do it in the next release.

Q: You mentioned: The MAC address of the XenClient host will be used.  Wireless networks are shared connections with the VMs being on an internal NAT – Ist it the same for wired-Networks ?

A: Wired – you can use Bridged (DHCP), Shared (NAT) or INternal (comm between vm’s only); Wireless is Shared only today

Q: are there known problems with internal and external webcams? cause my external one is not working and when using the internal one it often happens (after around half an hour) that the whole system freezes.. including xenclient itself

A: Hmm.  Can you please file this as a bug in the forums?  Someone can followup with you on that.  We’ll need a status report as well

Q: with the nivdia gpu’s supported. any plans to support apple laptop hardware as XC host?

A: Yes, but haven’t worked out a timeline yet.  Would be mac OS on xc on mac hardware.

Q: i use Dell Latitude E6400 wonder how to connect 3g Cell Data

A: Are you using a USB key for this?  It should work by pluggin it in and having the correct drivers in your VM

Q: With the HCL for Xenclient it currently only seems to support a select amount of hardware, especially around graphics cards. Are there any plans to expand this?

A: Yes…we’ll continue to increase the HCL at and in between releases

Q: is there a documentation about the xc comand line tools?

A: Some of them are in the user guide.  What were you hoping to be able to control that you could not from the UI?

Q: Dell have built in 3g modem but not show in vm

A: From the receiver for xenclient UI, if you click on the top to change the view to advanced mode, you can connect it to the VM as a USB device

Q: I’ve installed XC on a HP 2530P NB and then tried to create some VM’s but I didn’t see them. After booting the NB with an USB-device attached I have seen the created VM’s and had the possibilty to configure them. Is this a bug and are there some patches available??

A: Yes, this is a known bug and will be addressed in the next release

Q: copying WM to and from external disks

A: You can use SCP or Putty today.  Looking at doing this more elegantly in the future

Q: is it possible to encrypt the VHD’s?

A: Yes.  Disk encrpytion feature is in XC 1.0 and is managed via the Synchronizer UI

Q: can i configure the MAC of the vif interfaces?

A: Not currently, but we’re working towards supporting this feature over the next year

Q: What is about policies for the device and not only on vm level. to just restrict user from setting up their “non-managed” vm in a way that is not allowed by information security

A: yes…adding a # of security features soon. This is on the list.

Q: How do you get fully accelerated access to devices such as the graphics adapter and at the same time claim to have “full hardware independence”?

A: The Intel GPU is passed through to the VM leveraging VT-d.  Note, this is an option and you can run your VMs without the GPU passed through to it

Q: any plans for supporting ati gpu’s ?

A: we’re working with 3rd party GPU vendors.  No dates yet though when ATI would be supported

Q: AHCI mode on HDD is needed ?

A: Yes, this is a requirement

Q: Will tablet PC’s (example HP2740p etc) with their tablet features be supported?

A: Digitizer is not yet supported; we’re looking at that for future rleases

Q: any plans to support eSATA HDDs?

A: Looking at for future release…how important is that?

Q: Can you passthrough NICs or other PCI devices to the VMs?

A: No, this is not supported currently.  How do you envision using this feature?

Q: I am having strange behavior with external monitor configuration it seems that the vms do not recognize the last status. so if I work with a docking station and two external monitors and then afterwards work only with the notebook itself and then try to boot again from within the docking station I am having trouble to get my monitor setup back

A: We dont support more than 1 external monitor at a time for 1.0.  And, you have to have graphics pass through enabled for the vm that will be used on internal and external monitor;  Will address these limitations in next release.

Q: Is Bluetooth supported?

A: Yes in 1.0

Q: could i clone the vm in XC, either command line or UI?[

A: Sorry, this is not supported. You could create a new VM, and then from dom0 copy the source VHD to the new VHD file in /storage/disks

Q: Will external disks (e.g. usb, eSATA) be supported to install XC onto?

A: Not currently planned…please describe the use case. (Note: You can currently install from a USB stick)

Q: how can i install certificate for Wireless Xenclient should i mount USB or use another tool ?

A: The forums have information on how to do this. You can scp the certificate into dom0, or mount a USB and cp off it (Note: http://forums.citrix.com/thread.jspa?threadID=274776&tstart=0)\\

Q: is there a way to do a p2v with a existing os?

A: Not yet, but we’re working on repuposing XenConvert (from XenServer) to enable this in the next release (1H2011) (Note: Keep your eye on the blog, I’ll write a vest practices around this)

Q: Will there be a possibility to remote control the xenclient in future release, for troubleshooting for example?

A: You can do this today using Intel AMT technology which comes with vPro

Q: Is there way how to lock whole computer (HV) from being use ? (Like lock computer in windows via ctrl alt del)

A: Yes, you can do it from the Citrix Reciver for XenClient (the service VM).   Under the power drop down on the left.

Q: Is there a possibility to get other windows os like windows 2003 and 2008/r2 running and fully integrating into the xenclient eg. Switcher Bar xc.tools,…?

A: We are looking at that for future versions.  I’ve hear many people say it works well today but we haven’t tested and not supported.

Q: lenovo audio driver reltek not working properly …the OCS not working

A: Please sumbit as bug on the XC support forum.  We, eng and support are monitoring that.

Q: The the company standard vm supposed to be sysprepped before you upload it, or how do I handle computernames and domain joins?

A: Yes…sysprep.  that is how Citrix IT is doing it for internal rollout

Q: Currently if I want to use Secure App Sharing, I’m seeing issues if I don’t have XenApp running on the network.  Is there a way to have Secure App Sharing to work without needing a XenApp server?

A: You don’t need to have XenApp Server running on the network.  Does Dazzle detect the apps on the publishing VM?

Q: have you a doc for the command line tool “xec”?

A: Sorry, nothing yet.  The mater class slides will have some tips and tricks around this

Q: Is it possible to add more than one user or a group to an existing device?

A: Not currenlty.  We envision XenClient to be a single user device for now

Q: How about live migration ? It is planed for some future releases ? Migration VM from one notebook to another notebook (live VM/offline VM) With same HV ofcourse.

A: This is an interesting use case, but we dont have it on our roadmap for now.  I’ll add it on the list to be evaluated

Q: is it planned to support XenDesktop-based VMs to be synchronized to a XenClient ?

A: Yes…this is on the roadmap

Q: Syncronizer on ESX

A: We’re considering this. Would Synchronizer on Windows Server suffice?

Q: About VMs images: how they are transferred during synchronization? Does the image contain all user’s application and data? If yes, how big the image can be? And how long can the transferring take?

A: There are 2 modes of image management: static and dynamic (this is still an experimental feature); Static backs up the entire vm, but only the deltas and they are compressed; for Dynamic we only back up user data

Q: Will there be a possibility for kind of challenge response solution; so if a user forgot his password that he can be enabled again also without going online first?

A: we’re looking to do Single Sign On between XC platform and the Windows OS via AD for the next release

Q: can i start a uploaded vm on xenserver? If i lose my laptop, can i access the backuped version the datacenter?

A: We provide a Synchronizer as part of XenDesktop Enterprise or Platinum Edition to enable this functionality

Q: Is hibernating fully supported yet? Cause I have some trouble with this in my windows 7 x64 machine

A: Yes, either from within the VM or from the Citrix Receiver.

Q: Xendesktop and Synchronizer backends talking to eachother with full integration…when? I would like some enterprise approach..or does these product always be controlled separate

A: This is on the roadmap

Q: can you run XC on Xen Server for test?

A: sorry…not tested or supported.  Why not use a laptop?

Q: Will Linux also be supported if Windows Server is supported in the future

A: yes, Linux support is on the roadmap

Q: When can the backends talk to each other..I mean I would like to have it talk to Xendesktop environment…is this upcoming or?

A: yes, it’s on the roadmap 2H 2011

Q: What non-Windows Guest OS are/will be supported?

A: Looking at Linux and MacOS on Mac HW

Q: will we see vpn supprt in the reciever? how about directaccess?

A: Considering this now.  Timeline not yet defined.  What is your scenario?

Q: When I try to launch applications on the VM that is subscribing to published applications, and I don’t have XenApp server up and running, I get an error mentioning XenApp needs to be running.  As soon as I power up my XenApp server, then it works.  This confused me since I never did any XenApp configuration on either the publishing VM or the subscribing VM.

A: Hmm, might need more information on this.  This is not the correct behavior.  Please submit this to the XC support forum. 

Q: are there new information regarding support of lenovo T-serie since berlin ? I’m waiting at a bios bugfix for my t 410  to use VT-d

A: We are awaiting the BIOS update from Lenovo.  Their last update to us was that it would be late Nov, early Dec.  We’ll update the support forum when this is available.

Q: with vpn in the reciewer i could do initial deployment over internet and have a seemless netwrk experience without directaccess

A: You’d put the synchronizer in the dmz or behind the firewall?

Q: Are PKI on Smartcards are supported yet ?

A: Not in the XC hypervisor platform; External (not internal) smart cards are support from within the VM

Q: What about Group Policies from Corporate AD. Is ist working properly in the VM ?

A: Are you asking for group policy on the VM itself, or within the VM – joined to AD?

Q: ok, so initial deployment of clients is done connected to the corporate network

A: Yes…you can do manually or via PxE.  Or, buy laptop that is preconfigured with XC from OEM partner

Q: Some tool for making you own hardware installed laptop to be virtualized to xenclient?

A: We’re working to get support for this on XenConvert for P2V

Q: is it possible to switch of encryption and will it be decrypted without downloading it again?

A: not sure…I’ll have to come back on this (Note: Need To check)

Q: What about Group Policies from Corporate AD. Is ist working properly in the VM ?
- Are you asking for group policy on the VM itself, or within the VM – joined to AD?
Within the VM joined to AD !

A: This should work as expected.  XenClient does not enforce or override group policies inside the VM OS

Q: cause this encrypting and decrypting is necessary for travelling user to e.g. china

A: This definitely is an interesting use case.  We’ll have to try this out

Q: What about notebook with 2 graphic cards ? NVIDIA and internal. When GPU is not loaded, notebook will switch to the integrated gpu. Will it work in VMs also ? (I know, Nvidia supp H1 2010)

A: Looking at vGPU support and supporting both GPU’s in future versions

Q: i saw i can setup only backup policy for after x hours and not at fixed time

A: interesting idea.  We’ll take note of that as a feature idea.  Can you describe use case please?

Q: if i miss the backup time when i restart the machine i need to wait another same time to backup

A: you can manually backup as well.  The admin will have to enable manual backup as a policy

Q: is it possible to customize the xenclient gui, for example to match ci,cd or cause of legal aspects?

A: No, but we’re looking to publically expose (SDKs) for Citrix Receiver in a future release.

Q: how do you boot a vm created within XC from a USB-installation media? I have tried but it will not find the USB device even though the usb is visible within XC.

A: Not possible today.  Is this for deployment to field users?

Q: i cannot left to end users to manually backup

A: got it…thanks

Q: can I use bluetooth devices like mouse or keyboard in vm under xenclient?

A: yes

Q: Yes, it’s deployment for field users. If you can not  boot from usb or have the syncronizer how should I do then?

A: Why can’t you use synchronizer?  That is preferred method for deploying the VM’s.  thanks

Q: what possibilities do i have to use synchroniser, golden images and/or image updates on clients integrated into an MS AD? will this updates procedures be aware of changes on local vm’s according to have them unique in AD (SIDs…)?

A: For dynamic images, updates should go to the golden image, and then updated to clients.  In the future you would be able to specify folders that you want persisted across reboots

Q: as soon you havent a migration path from physical 2 virtual it would be nice if i can install the xc on an usb drive. only in RC1 its working

A: We’re working on XenConvert tool to do this

Q: What is your current method for updating the platform BIOS with XenClient installed?  I assume Windows BIOS update tools will not work when running in a VM.

A: No not currently.  You will have to update the platform BIOS from a USB key or CD, any other method

Q: will it be possible to cluster synchronizer ro to work with different synchronizers spreaded over the world?

A: Next release.

Q: about VHD: does size of image file reduce when deleting data inside VM?

A: No, not right now.  We are working on the capability to automatically collapse VHDs in the background

Q: just an tip. if you have a running vm on xenserver with nfs storage you can just copy the vhd file to the xenclient and it will boot the os, like w2k8r2 oder netscaler

A: thanks

Q: if i join a xenclient to synchronizer i lost the autoboot function

A: Did disable it from synch?  Please submit a note to the support forum.  thanks (Note: This is known and will be fixed in the next update/sp)

Final Note

If any question form the  MasterClass is missing, this is not on purpose, I did only leave out questions which were already answered (duplicated).

Thanks again for you participation, we really appreciate your feedback and comments!

Sincerly, Walter Hofstetter

walter.hofstetter[at]citrix.com