It’s been a while since my last post as I moved over from the consulting team over to managing the XenApp, XenDesktop, and XenServer education curricula.

As part of the move I have been meeting with customers, partners, and instructors to discuss additional trainings for the curriculum. One of the results of this work is our newest XenApp and XenDesktop training course which will be delivered at Citrix locations next month or available virtually as part of our early access program.

The concept for this class centers on end-user experience – one of the most important aspects of a solution yet often one that is overlooked.

The end-user experience begins with onboarding, because as the saying goes, “you only get one chance to make a first impression.” Onboarding a new user should be a seamless experience. In this course you will learn how to leave a lasting impression on first time users with installation and configuration of Receiver with little or no need for user interaction.

The next aspect is access. The presentation of resources and the way users access apps, desktops, and data should be seamless and easy. There are multiple ways to provide access from desktop shortcuts (PNAgent style) to company branded Receivers and in this course you will learn how to best deliver each method and create a fully customized StoreFront.

You will continue on with logon performance, in session experience, and learn all about delivering media and graphics in the very common scenario of having limited resources.
User Experience

The upcoming course is CXD-301 XenApp and XenDesktop Advanced Concepts – Optimizing the End User Experience. As implied by the title, the course covers both theory and lab exercises on how to optimize the end-user experience. I encourage you to check out the course description online at, but below is a small subset of topics from a couple of modules in the course.

From Module 05 – Optimizing HDX Graphics

With the release of 7.6 feature pack 3, the default graphics delivery behavior has changed and the enhanced Thinwire Compatibility mode is now available via user policies. You can learn all about the use cases and the importance of policy precedence to ensure the intended delivery method is used. If FrameHawk is specifically applied to a subset of users, they will use FrameHawk even if a higher priority policy specifies Thinwire Compatibility mode. Accordingly you need to make sure to test connections and note the cheat sheet from the course below.

Policy Precedence

From Module 07 – Configuring for Double Hop HDX Connections

Many customers leverage application silos due to application compatibility or ease of management and deliver these applications in what is commonly known as double-hop. In this scenario a XenApp or XenDesktop desktop is launched and other applications are launched from within the session. Have you considered the user experience in this scenario?  In this course you will learn how to streamline the user’s workflow when using double-hop configuring drive mapping, profiles, workspace control, and more.


This is the first advanced concepts course, but be on the lookout for another already in the works. I would also like to thank Andy Baker, Ilan Belehssen, Nathaniel De Leon, Kevin Nardone, and Carsten Thue as well as the many other who have been contributing to the development of this course.