Blog Feed Post

Citrix Logon Simulator: A Must-Have for Citrix Administrators

Citrix Logon SimulatorSlow logon is one of the most common complaints from Citrix users. Due to the multitude of steps involved and the inter-dependencies between various tiers in the logon process, logon slowness is a difficult problem for Citrix administrators to detect and resolve.

Citrix logon performance can be monitored in two ways:

  • Passively, by observing real user logons and tracking the time taken to logon, as well as a breakdown of where time is being spent
  • Actively, by simulating logons periodically to a Citrix farm, determining if logon succeeds and how long it takes

Both approaches complement each other and are needed for end-to-end monitoring of user logon issues. While real user logon monitoring is important to understand user experience in real time and troubleshoot problems, logon simulation is needed to benchmark logon performance and test its impact before real users are affected.

In this blog, we will discuss why logon simulation is a necessity for any Citrix farm and how to select the right logon simulator tool for the job.

What is a Citrix Logon Simulator?

A Citrix logon simulator is a tool that helps the administrator simulate a logon scenario using the exact same steps that a real user would take. A typical logon simulation includes:

  • A user logging into Citrix StoreFront or Citrix NetScaler through a web browser
  • Viewing a list of published applications (XenApp) or published desktops (XenDesktop)
  • Clicking on one or more of the applications/desktops and launching them

A logon simulator repeats this scenario at periodic intervals. The testing can be done 24×7 from any endpoint from any physical location, and logon performance can be compared across geographical regions.

Citrix logon simulation with eG Enterprise

Key Benefits of Using a Citrix Logon Simulator

  • Proactively test and detect logon issues before real users are impacted, to speed up troubleshooting
  • Logon is a critical step in a Citrix session that is dependent on the proper functioning of various components in the Citrix infrastructure. Testing logon shows if all tiers in the Citrix environment are available and work as expected.
  • Benchmark logon performance for your environment: compare performance before and after migration, upgrades, across multiple farms and geos.

Key Criteria for Selecting a Citrix Logon Simulator

Here are several criteria for you to consider when you are evaluating logon simulators for your Citrix farm:

  • Web-based: Most Citrix users access Citrix infrastructures using a web browser, by connecting to a Citrix StoreFront or NetScaler. The logon simulator must be web-based, to mirror the exact same steps that a real user takes to logon to Citrix.
  • Integrated with Citrix monitoring tool: Ideally, the logon simulator must not be another tool that the Citrix administrator must use separately. It should be an integral part of a Citrix monitoring system, so the results of each simulation are reported in the monitoring tool’s console, are compared with thresholds, and generate proactive alerts for administrators. This way, trends of logon times can also be obtained and the simulated logon time compared with other infrastructure performance metrics (e.g., concurrent sessions, application activity, etc.), to identify what could be causing logon slowness.
  • Access to historical data and reports: Although live data is important, often Citrix administrators must analyze performance over time to understand and prove how well their infrastructure is performing. Having access to historical logon time information for performance analysis for analysis and reporting is therefore important.
  • Intuitive visualization to analyze logon slowdown: There are different steps involved in the simulation – the time taken to open a browser, authenticate the user, access the StoreFront/NetScaler web page, find the application/desktop to be launched in that page and finally, log in and launch the application/desktop. Look for a logon simulator that captures the time taken for each of these stages, to get key insights that help you narrow down where the slowdowns during logon originate (e.g., during authentication, application enumeration, or application launch). Visual representation of the breakdown of processing time for each step in the logon process makes troubleshooting simple and fast.

eG Enterprise Logon Simulator for Citrix XenApp & XenDesktop

  • Support simulation of multiple users: Many times, you may want to simulate logons for different groups of users (each group may have different group policies, different sets of applications, etc.), and so it is impractical to install an instance of logon simulator for each distinct user. Your logon simulator should be able to support logon simulation for multiple users sequentially.
  • Support for selecting required applications for simulation: This is a key requirement. A Citrix farm may have hundreds of applications and you may want to pick the key applications alone. Your logon simulator should be able to execute for a selected subset of applications or desktops.
  • Ability to capture a broad range of logon issues: Besides common issues like authentication failures and enumeration failures, you should make sure that the logon simulator verifies the logon process all the way to application launch. It should capture situations such as failed application launches due to a corrupt DLL, for example.
  • Simple configuration and secure architecture: The logon simulator should be simple to configure and not require the administrator to spend time recording a script for playback. Furthermore, the logon simulator architecture should be secure. It should not require any administrator credentials that could compromise the security of the Citrix farm. The logon simulator should take a truly external view of the Citrix farm, in much the same way that a real user does.
  • Multi-modal alerting: When logon performance problems are detected, you need to be alerted to such issues in a timely manner. Ideally, besides alerting over email or SMS, the logon simulator should integrate with your ticketing tool (ServiceNow, Remedy, PagerDuty, etc.) to automatically create trouble tickets for logon issues. This streamlines the helpdesk process and enables faster resolution.

The eG Enterprise Logon Simulator for Citrix

The eG Enterprise Logon Simulator for Citrix XenApp & XenDesktop is a purpose-built tool that enables administrators to proactively detect, diagnose and resolve Citrix logon issues. It is fully integrated with the eG Enterprise Citrix monitoring solution and provides web-based dashboards, intuitive diagnosis and visualization capabilities, historical reports and correlated performance insights. New in eG Enterprise version 6.2, this capability is available for on premises deployment or in a SaaS model. Learn more »

The post Citrix Logon Simulator: A Must-Have for Citrix Administrators appeared first on eG Innovations.

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Vinod Mohan

Vinod Mohan is a Senior Product Marketing Manager for eG Innovations, a global provider of unified performance monitoring and root-cause diagnosis solutions for virtual, physical and cloud IT infrastructures. He has 10 years of experience in product, technology and solution marketing of IT software and services spanning application performance management, network, systems, virtualization, storage, IT security and IT service management (ITSM).

Previously, he was a Senior Product Marketing Manager at SolarWinds for server and application monitoring software. Now a key team member for eG Innovations, he is a contributing author for the eG Innovations blog, "Application & Virtualization Performance Insights", along with other trade publications including APMdigest, DABCC, Cyber Defense Magazine, IT Briefcase, Insfosec Island, The Hacker News, IT Pro Portal, and SolarWinds THWACK community.

Latest Stories
Mobile device usage has increased exponentially during the past several years, as consumers rely on handhelds for everything from news and weather to banking and purchases. What can we expect in the next few years? The way in which we interact with our devices will fundamentally change, as businesses leverage Artificial Intelligence. We already see this taking shape as businesses leverage AI for cost savings and customer responsiveness. This trend will continue, as AI is used for more sophistica...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
Most technology leaders, contemporary and from the hardware era, are reshaping their businesses to do software. They hope to capture value from emerging technologies such as IoT, SDN, and AI. Ultimately, irrespective of the vertical, it is about deriving value from independent software applications participating in an ecosystem as one comprehensive solution. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kausik Sridhar, founder and CTO of Pulzze Systems, discussed how given the magnitude of today's application ...
Recently, REAN Cloud built a digital concierge for a North Carolina hospital that had observed that most patient call button questions were repetitive. In addition, the paper-based process used to measure patient health metrics was laborious, not in real-time and sometimes error-prone. In their session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sean Finnerty, Executive Director, Practice Lead, Health Care & Life Science at REAN Cloud, and Dr. S.P.T. Krishnan, Principal Architect at REAN Cloud, discussed how they built...
The “Digital Era” is forcing us to engage with new methods to build, operate and maintain applications. This transformation also implies an evolution to more and more intelligent applications to better engage with the customers, while creating significant market differentiators. In both cases, the cloud has become a key enabler to embrace this digital revolution. So, moving to the cloud is no longer the question; the new questions are HOW and WHEN. To make this equation even more complex, most ...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
As you move to the cloud, your network should be efficient, secure, and easy to manage. An enterprise adopting a hybrid or public cloud needs systems and tools that provide: Agility: ability to deliver applications and services faster, even in complex hybrid environments Easier manageability: enable reliable connectivity with complete oversight as the data center network evolves Greater efficiency: eliminate wasted effort while reducing errors and optimize asset utilization Security: imple...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, examined the regulations and provided insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence arou...
The past few years have brought a sea change in the way applications are architected, developed, and consumed—increasing both the complexity of testing and the business impact of software failures. How can software testing professionals keep pace with modern application delivery, given the trends that impact both architectures (cloud, microservices, and APIs) and processes (DevOps, agile, and continuous delivery)? This is where continuous testing comes in. D
Modern software design has fundamentally changed how we manage applications, causing many to turn to containers as the new virtual machine for resource management. As container adoption grows beyond stateless applications to stateful workloads, the need for persistent storage is foundational - something customers routinely cite as a top pain point. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 21st Cloud Expo, Bill Borsari, Head of Systems Engineering at Datera, explored how organizations can reap the bene...
Digital transformation is about embracing digital technologies into a company's culture to better connect with its customers, automate processes, create better tools, enter new markets, etc. Such a transformation requires continuous orchestration across teams and an environment based on open collaboration and daily experiments. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Alex Casalboni, Technical (Cloud) Evangelist at Cloud Academy, explored and discussed the most urgent unsolved challenges to achieve f...
The dynamic nature of the cloud means that change is a constant when it comes to modern cloud-based infrastructure. Delivering modern applications to end users, therefore, is a constantly shifting challenge. Delivery automation helps IT Ops teams ensure that apps are providing an optimal end user experience over hybrid-cloud and multi-cloud environments, no matter what the current state of the infrastructure is. To employ a delivery automation strategy that reflects your business rules, making r...
The 22nd International Cloud Expo | 1st DXWorld Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, to be held June 5-7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York, NY, brings together Cloud Computing, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding busin...
In a recent survey, Sumo Logic surveyed 1,500 customers who employ cloud services such as Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform (GCP). According to the survey, a quarter of the respondents have already deployed Docker containers and nearly as many (23 percent) are employing the AWS Lambda serverless computing framework. It’s clear: serverless is here to stay. The adoption does come with some needed changes, within both application development and operations. Tha...